Pro-Singaporean hiring policy requires mindset shift: Tan Chuan-Jin

October 1, 201311:00 am301 views
Pro-Singaporean hiring policy requires mindset shift: Tan Chuan-Jin
Pro-Singaporean hiring policy requires mindset shift: Tan Chuan-Jin

Helping skilled Singaporeans find and keep jobs requires a mindset shift that cannot be done through legislation, said Acting Minister for Manpower Tan Chuan-Jin on Monday.

Speaking before participants of a pilot programme to place and train Singaporean professionals, managers and executives (PMEs), Tan noted that the older local talents were becoming more vulnerable to being laid off and to not getting a job soon after.

“Ultimately, to achieve a change, it requires a mindset shift. That is something we cannot legislate, but we have to encourage, cajole and provide various incentives,” Tan said.

He pointed out that the elder PMEs faced challenges not only from employment pass holders but the increasing number of Singaporean graduates entering the workforce ever year as well.

Some people want the government to cut overall foreign worker numbers drastically, he noted, but he questioned whether that was the correct solution.

The best way to address the challenges was to develop a “basket of solutions”, and, in this regard, the ministry has recently taken concrete steps towards this, he said.

The ministry last week announced tighter rules on the hiring of skilled foreigners. It will require employers to prove they first tried to hire Singaporean professionals before foreign counterparts from August 2014, and it will also raise the salary threshold for employment pass holder to $3,300 from $3,000 effective next January.

Review of training programmes

To also meet future challenges, Tan said the government will conduct a major review of the masterplan for Continuing Education and Training (CET) programmes, which are aimed at helping PMEs upgrade their skills and remain relevant.

A review of the current CET masterplan, which was launched in 2008, was timely as the government seeks to transform the economy and help Singaporeans fulfil their aspirations at the same time, he added.

Tan said that the manpower ministry will carry out further consultation on the masterplan in the months ahead.

Meanwhile, a recent report showed that nine out of 10 employees in Singapore feel that employer’s demands on skills and competencies are higher now than five years ago.

Increased emphasis is now being placed on education, experience and social and digital skills, according to the Randstad Workmonitor Report for the third quarter of this year released Monday.

Eight out of ten Singaporean employees anticipate their jobs will become even more demanding in the next five years, and almost half (47 per cent) of them are concerned they will not be able to meet the requirements in the future, the job search and recruitment agency said.

source: sg.finance.yahoo.com/news

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