(Metro Manila, Philippines) To help boost the compliance of micro-establishments in Metro Manila to labor standards, the Department of Labor and Employment – National Capital Region (DOLE-NCR) offers its help by inviting the small business owners and employees to attend orientations on advisory and technical services.

DOLE initiated a program called Technical and Advisory Visit (TAV) which refers to the conduct of orientation seminars and authorized assistance and follow-up visits by trained DOLE Inspectors to Micro Enterprises (MEs) with an employment size of less than ten (10) workers.

So far, the regional office has been tirelessly inviting and orienting micro-establishments for four months now, but there is still a long way to go as the orientation is still ongoing.

With this, DOLE-NCR Regional Director, Atty. Sarah Buena S. Mirasol encourages the micro-establishments in Metro Manila to participate in the program.

“Para sa ating maliliit na negosyo, sana kapag kami ay nag-imbita sa inyo, tayo po ay dumalo. Marami po kayong matututuhan dito at kayo po ay matutulungan namin, lahat ng serbisyo ng Department of Labor and Employment and its attached agencies ay nasa inyo,” said Atty. Mirasol.

TAV is conducted by Labor Inspectors (LIs) and Assistant Labor Inspectors (ALIs) through online, hybrid, or onsite. Invited micro-establishments can attend TAV orientation in which they will learn various labor-related matters including Occupational Safety and Health Standards (OSHS), General Labor Standards (GLS), Productivity Toolbox, and Child and Family Welfare Program.

Unlike labor inspection, TAV mainly focuses on the community based micro-establishments.

“Ang labor inspection, ito ‘yung regulatory function ng Department of Labor and Employment wherein tayo ay bumibisita at nagko-conduct ng inspection para tingnan ang compliance ng mga establishments. Pero ngayon sa TAV, iniimbitahan natin ang mga maliliit na negosyo upang tulungan at bigyan ng assistance for technical and advisory services,” she emphasized.

The main purpose of the program is to provide guidance and assistance to establishments in complying with labor laws, labor standards, and other employment regulations.

In the event, visit checklists are provided to micro-establishments wherein they will identify any compliance gaps. If there are such, they will be assisted by LIs and ALIs in the production of action plans which they have to carry out in the next three months.

Signifying its commitment to the TAV program, as of August 23, 2023, the regional office accumulated 88.53% of compliance rate.

Beyond ensuring compliance, the Department extends its services by facilitating referrals to Safety Officer 1 training (4,463 individuals), First Aid training (4,416), DOLE Integrated Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (47), SSS (1,635), PhilHealth (621), and Pag-IBIG (656).

Further, the TAV program is part of DOLE’s effort to promote decent work and protect the rights of workers. If the micro-establishments cooperate with DOLE’s authorized personnel, they will be able to appreciate the following benefits:

Compliance: Employers can receive guidance on how to ensure they are in compliance with labor laws, regulations, and safety standards.

Enhancement: Recommendations from the TAV can lead to improvements in workplace practices, health and safety measures, and overall working conditions.

Avoiding Penalties: By addressing any potential violations or issues identified during the TAV, employers can mitigate the risk of facing penalties or employee complaints related to labor violations.

Employee Welfare: The visit may lead to improvements that enhance the well-being of employees, such as better working conditions, fair wages, and proper benefits.

The emergence of TAV was under the Department Order No. 238, Series of 2023, or the “Rules on the Administration and Enforcement of Labor Standards under Article 128 of the Labor Code of the Philippines, as Renumbered, and Republic Act No. 11058.”

END / Mark Louie Conde and Esteban Chua Jr.

(For more information and appreciation about TAV, watch the video below)