Agency owner/director Ura Tangaroa confirms that although she has acted as an agent for many businesses and individuals in the past, having this licence now means she can without limitations have easier access to the right candidates direct from the main recruitment agency in Manila, as opposed to being restricted only to referrals from current employers.
Part of the licence allows access to an official recruitment database through Riseman Power Agency in the Philippines, listing all potential candidates for positions, ensuring the employer quality foreign workers who are ready and able to pursue advertised positions.
However, at the same time, they implement a screening process for potential employers here in the Cook Islands quality contributions.
These cover the process of finding a foreign worker, getting all the relevant documentation together, ensuring that the person has good character references and keeping in constant communication with them before they arrive.
However, Tangaroa says that because of her tight association with many members of the Rarotonga based Filipino community, her genuine interest for people helps make the process easier.
The agency currently operates from the Shekinah Office in Tupapa, however Tangaroa says she also provides a ‘mobile’ service for those who are unable to come to her.
RMS Ltd is set up and approved to recruit and distribute foreign workers to businesses here in the Cook Islands.
“My goal is to help make it easier for the employer to find foreign help” says Tangaroa.
“This licence allows me to recruit straight from the Philippines but does not restrict me from employing from other countries, either on behalf of the employer, or alternatively identifying specialised workers to assist businesses or individuals on a case by case basis under the RMS Ltd umbrella,” says Tangaroa.
In April 2015, a notice was distributed in the Phillipines that the option of direct hire was no longer possible and that the only way to achieve overseas employment was through an agency.
Tangaroa says that a big part of this new process was to eliminate the problems both foreign workers and foreign employers have had when they receive people who do not meet their expectations.
When asked where her inspiration came from, Tangaroa said that a big part of it was due to her late husband, Metuatini Tangaroa’s ‘big heart to help people regardless of their circumstances as he felt there was no place for people who fell in this category to get help.”
Due to the many inquiries Tangaroa has received over the last four years from people seeking help, she feels that the need for a business like this has escalated and says she is in a much better place now to actively pursue it than she was before.
Coming from a strong Christian background, Tangaroa believes ‘people matter’ and irrespective of colour, race, shape or size and being a resident in a Christian nation, it should be our duty to help those who need it.
“I could see how some foreign workers, mainly Filipino’s were treated by their employers, and to some extent vice versa. However, I always seemed to find myself in the middle of disputes or conflicts mediating situations and on a few occasions advocating for the employee or the employer.”
Tangaroa found that by working closely with both employers and the employees it helped resolve if not all, then many issues that would arise and avoided the worse case scenarios which was to have matters settled via a lawyer or through the court system, both of which were expenses they could unlikely afford.
Tangaroa told CINews that the majority of foreign workers arriving on our shores have come from countries where an ‘open door’ policy to supporting government agencies was not a familiar act for them, as help was not easily accessible. This is one of the reasons why foreigners do not explore this option and either accept whatever situation they are in, or knock on the door of a friendly face hoping help will be offered.
Tangaroa says that having received her licence, the next step is to work collaboratively with relevant departments to establish and implement a sound process with regards to the importation of foreign workers and design a system that supports both employees and employers.
A ‘one stop shop’ is the business model Tangaroa has based her agency on.
“Having everything you need under one umbrella is a goal of my agency. Gone are the days where you have to go here there andeverywhere just to gather what was required to make an application. I want my clients to be able to come to me, tell me what they want, and then leave with the satisfaction of not having the hassle of doing all the running around and know that the next time we meet, I should have answers.”
Tangaroa says her doors are always open for all current and future foreign employees and employers if they are in need of mediation or assistance . She can be contactedon 28034 or 50137. - SM