The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) was established as a small bureau in 1908 under the Department of Commerce and Police. It had, for its principal functions, the registration of laborers, the compilation and analysis of statistics pertaining to labor market situation, the organization of employment agencies, and the settlement of disputes.
On December 8, 1933, the Bureau of Labor was constituted as a Department by virtue of Republic Act 4121. Since then, it has continuously evolved its thrusts and strategies to respond to emerging socio-political and economic challenges while keeping as primary concern the protection and promotion of the welfare of local and overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).
Today, the DOLE is the national government agency mandated to formulate policies, implement programs and serve as the policy-coordinating arm of the Executive Branch in the field of labor and employment.
It serves more than 36 million workers comprising the country's labor force, covering those in the formal and informal economies, private and public. On top of this, the DOLE clients also include workers' organizations, employers and/or employers' groups, non-government organizations (NGOs), and other government agencies, the academe, other stakeholders, international organizations (e.g., ILO, IOM, UNDP, UNICEF), and the international community including the host countries of our OFWs.
To carry out its mandate, the DOLE has 16 regional offices, 83 Field Offices with four (4) Satellite Offices, 38 overseas posts, 7 bureaus, 7 staff services and 12 agencies attached to it for policy and program supervision and/or coordination. It has a total manpower complement of 8,518.
To promote gainful employment opportunities,
develop human resources,
protect workers and promote their welfare,
and maintain industrial peace.
Every Filipino worker attains full, decent and productive employment.