What it does: Meralco is an electric distribution utility company that provides power to around 36 cities including Metro Manila and 75 municipalities in the Philippines.
Best known for: In the Philippines, electricity is almost synonymous with Meralco. It is the largest private-sector electric power distribution company in the country, with a franchise area of around 9,685 km2 and covers most of the Philippines’ major commercial, population, and industrial centers. The company has been around for more than 11 decades, serving 6.6 million customers.
Staff stats: 5,500+ employees, with headquarters located in Ortigas Avenue, Pasig, Metro Manila.
The good bits: Meralco has been voted as one of the top 10 companies Filipinos aspire to work for, for its work-life balance, benefits, and job security. The company offers several employee engagement activities and a campus-like main office that puts a premium on overall wellness.
The not-so-good bits: Office politics is a recurring issues on major job sites that may hinder career growth, especially for entry-level roles.
Hiring grads with top marks in: Engineering, Maths, IT & Computer Sciences; Finance, Accounting, Economics & Business Administration; Humanities, Arts & Social Sciences; Law & Legal Studies; Sciences; Teaching, Education & Human Welfare
Meralco’s story began in 1894. Then called La Electricista, it was the first-ever electric company to provide Manila's electricity during the end of the Spanish era. On March 24 1903, Detroit entrepreneur Charles M. Swift won the bid to operate Manila’s electric tramway and provide electricity to the city and its surrounding suburbs, thus setting the date as the company's anniversary.
Another franchise was awarded to Swift in 1906: an assignment to operate a 9.8 kilometre extension line from Paco to Fort McKinley and Pasig. To operate the franchise, Swift founded the Manila Suburban Railway, which was merged with the Manila Electric Company in 1919.
During the Second World War, the Japanese transferred all of the company’s holdings and assets to Taiwan Power Company, a Japanese-controlled entity. It was only in 1962 that Meralco was entirely Filipino-owned when Don Eugenio Lopez, Sr. acquired the company. Seven years later Meralco became the first billion-peso company in the Philippines – a feat that was achieved without recourse to government guarantees.
Meralco sold all its generating plants to state-run National Power Corporation as mandated by the government, switching its core business to electric distribution. State control of the company ended in 1986 when then-President Corazon Aquino toppled the Marcos dictatorship, bringing back company ownership to the Lopez Group.
In 2009, Meralco was able to improve cost reductions and business opportunities by partnering up with two prominent Philippine conglomerates: PLDT and San Miguel. Today, The company has been showing continuous improvement in terms of sales, financial, and operating results as of 2018. Records show a growing customer base, a record-high volume of consolidated energy sales, and improving operating performance and capital expenditure.
Meralco’s recruitment process varies from case to case, but the standard application process begins with an online submission of resumes. The company uses an online hiring portal that aggregates open jobs, stores your resume, notifies you of your application status and allows you to apply anytime using your mobile device.
HR will review your application to validate eligibility. Candidates deemed suitable will be requested to undergo HR assessment (an online exam and interview). Two timed tests were noted by employees on major job sites: a standard IQ test and an aptitude test.
The best applicants are then selected to undergo a panel interview with the hiring manager. Should you make the shortlist, you’ll be required to take a medical exam. Job offers are based on the overall results of your application.
Meralco's offers above-average salary offerings and benefits that may include health insurance, pension plan, rice allocation, Christmas bonuses, vacation leaves, a sizeable merit bonus, a guaranteed annual increase, and more.
Employees on major job sites praise Meralco’s work-life balance. The company achieves this through several employee engagement activities that include yoga, aero boxing, Zumba, sports clinics, tournaments, religious events, festivals, fairs, parties, and others. Employees may use any of the company’s amenities which includes sports facilities, a zen room, game room, hospital, and a chapel, among others.
A PULSE Employee Engagement Survey, which measures the degree to which employees feel valued in a company, was conducted in 2017 with 99% of employees responding. The results showed a 91% total engagement score.
Meralco seeks to serve the society through its corporate foundation and social development arm, the One Meralco Foundation (OMF). The foundation rallies Meralco employees, business and government partners, and its subsidiaries and affiliates to engage in sustainable and long-term programs that focus on grassroots partnerships, youth and sports advocacy, energy education, community electrification, and employee volunteerism.
One would expect a company like Meralco in the utility industry to have a rigid and bureaucratic work environment where there’s no time for play. This isn’t quite the case, according to reviews. Meralco’s engagement activities and various fringe benefits promote a work-life balance where the hardest workers are often rewarded.