COVID-19 Hiring Trends: Sales & Marketing Jobs in Philippines

woman planning how to manage her staff remotely

While the coronavirus situation has struck businesses hard in the Philippines, we are beginning to see a steady recovery in hiring activities for sales and marketing roles. Businesses have started resuming their interview processes and new roles are steadily coming in.

We expect more headcounts to be approved, as businesses resume hiring for key roles across various areas to prepare themselves for a ‘new normal’ once the community quarantine gets lifted. Clients have also started embracing more creative ways of attracting talent, doing online recruitment and onboarding new starters. More than anything else, businesses and candidates are coming up with Plan Bs for current and future crises.

For the Sales and Marketing sector in particular, the world did not stop; it just evolved.  


How would you describe the recruitment market for your sector during the COVID-19 crisis? Have there been any changes? 

The recruitment market for FMCG has indeed slowed down during the first phase of the COVID-19 outbreak. FMCG companies, from local conglomerates to MNCs, have put on hold most of their available roles, except for those deemed crucial for the business. However, from around May, companies have started to reopen available roles. Some start-up companies even bravely entered the Philippine market during May.

Similarly, for the digital platform market, recruitment was slow during the first two months into the pandemic. 2020 was supposed to be an aggressive year for digitalisation, as the market continues to get more comfortable in doing e-commerce. Despite the slow overall business and hiring sentiment, the sector remains an exciting one. Professionals would require creativity and agility to quickly adapt to market needs. Consumers are now obligated to have apps on their phones, and must learn about online food deliveries, e-payments, and virtual meetings, as they adapt to living in this ‘new normal’.  

With most clients generally being afraid of the unknown, and tired of the negative information clutter on the news and their social media, broadcasting any positive information now can go a long way. Take for example the new trend of companies hosting donation portals, from digital drives, concerts, podcast type of content, to straightforward relief programmes. Business partnerships will also play a big role as we move towards a new “normal”. Think back to when advertising agencies collaborated in order to save the industry from the rise of digital marketing. Most, if not all, retail brands will now need a third-party logistics company to manage their deliveries. This is followed by a payment gateway, and an e-wallet to handle fees. 

Who is hiring and what roles are they hiring for? 

  • Companies in the FMCG industry, both food and non-food sectors, are hiring for Senior Sales and Business Development roles, and are looking for mid to senior management marketing professionals
  • Pharmaceuticals are hiring for Sales and Product Management professionals
  • We are now in an era of ‘essential services’. Most companies will be shifting to e-commerce in terms of content, products, services, and these will be procured and produced on-demand
  • Other industries with roles that are in demand include Fintech, E-Logistics, E-Commerce, E-Health, and E-Education

Why should companies hire now?

Companies should take this opportunity to hire suitable talent for their vacant senior management roles, as these roles are key for the business, especially in the current situation. It is also important to strengthen client engagements. Creative and effective strategic marketing campaigns should be properly implemented, therefore a strong and well-performing Marketing team is crucial for companies.  

Recruitment Advice

  • Candidates should expect all recruitment processes and even onboarding to be done online
  • Candidates should choose their roles and applications wisely. It does not look good for a candidate’s profile to deviate too far from the norm - this will pose a challenge to recruiters in terms of determining candidates’ career direction and motivations
  • Online interviews tools, such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Skype, etc. have become the norm in hiring, and companies are adjusting well to remote onboarding of new hires, especially for the roles hired pre-COVID-19 and onboarded during the crisis
  • If hired, candidates should expect to be multi-hatting or doing dual roles, as the pandemic has resulted in a more practical and efficient talent landscape.

View/download full PDF version here.

Robert Walters offers expert hiring advice to our clients looking to attract and retain top professionals. Contact us today at for your latest recruitment needs.  

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