PUTRAJAYA: The process of hiring a foreign maid could take just eight days with the Immigration Department’s new Maid Online system (SMO).
This is provided there are no complications in completing the nine procedures required under SMO, said Immigration director-general Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali.
The first three procedures involve online registration of the employer, login and health examination.
For the health examination,
Mustafar said the employer must upload documents to prove the maid to be hired has undergone screening with the Foreign Workers Medical Examination Monitoring Agency (Fomema).
“Fomema will verify the documents, and this will take about three to five days. However, it will be longer if the employer does not fulfil certain requirements.
“Once the Fomema procedure is completed, the next five steps are uploading documents, document verification, approval, result notification, online payment and printing of visitor’s pass sticker (for temporary employment).
“The process for these five steps will take about five days, so in total, the whole nine procedures could be completed in as quick as eight days,” said Mustafar at a press briefing on SMO at the Immigration Department headquarters here.
To hire a foreign maid via SMO, the potential maid must be in Malaysia on a social visit pass.
The new online application system will cut costs for employers as there are no middlemen involved.
The cost to hire a maid under SMO is around RM1,600 to RM2,500, which includes levy, deposit and processing fee, among others.
This is a huge cut compared to hiring a foreign maid through an agency, which costs RM12,000 and above.
“With SMO, the hiring of a foreign maid becomes faster and affordable. The department’s aim with this system is to make things convenient for the public,” said Mustafar.
The online application system was first announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in his Budget 2018 speech.
If the potential maid has overstayed her social visit pass, she can still be employed but the employer must pay a compound, which could be a maximum of RM900.
Mustafar said only those who overstayed between Jan 1, 2017, and Dec 31, 2017, are allowed to be hired.
The maid must come from nine source countries – Indonesia, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, India, Laos, Nepal, Vietnam and Cambodia.
The SMO kicks off on Jan 1 at maid-online.imi.gov.my.