Latest Posts

Job Matching Made Easier

Jobs Portal

For Singaporeans seeking to find employment, and employers seeking to hire, WDA’s newly-launched Jobs Bank may go some way to resolve their job matching woes.

In line with the Fair Consideration Framework which seeks to change mindsets and workplaces to ensure a level-playing field for Singaporeans, the Jobs Bank was launched on 14 July, and is a free online portal to match Singaporeans to prospective employers, and contribute towards good jobs and opportunities for Singaporeans. Something to check out, considering the growing buzz — more than 4,300 employers and 12,900 individuals already registered during the beta version launched in May, and the number of available vacancies has more than doubled to 37,000 in the two weeks since the official launch!

Harnessing Positivity to Change for the Better

Boy in front of Esplanade, Singapore

In Prof David Chan’s article “Democracy of deeds and voices” (295kb .pdf; Straits Times, 7 Jun 2014), he advocates that “voices and actions solve problems” and that “positivity opens hearts and minds”. In our evolving democracy, it is a combination of deeds and voices that will lead to real improvement in society and people’s quality of life – not just for the people who are helped but also for those who step forward to give voice and take action.

Megatrends such as shifts in the global economy and the rise of disruptive technologies are changing the way people around the world live, work and play. These trends also feed into the complexity of our demographic challenge, impacting how we strengthen our citizen workforce, balance the pros and cons of immigration, and support active and meaningful aging. Public expressions of negative emotions have loomed large. Prof David Chan makes a distinction between public expressions of negative emotions – which is not always a bad thing, and a “negativity mindset” which he describes as “a self-reinforcing confirmatory bias” and “the tendency to seek out, interpret and remember information that confirms existing beliefs, positions or actions which highlight negative attributes of the target.” Such a mindset hinders reflective thinking, locks in negative conclusions, and prevents constructive discussion which is key towards finding solutions to problems.

Keeping pace with change will determine our success as a people and a country. This will involve efforts from everyone including the government, the community and the individual. Prof Chan proposes that people-centric involvement in deeds and voices will help foster a “positivity mindset” over time, and is a resource for Singaporeans to deal with the change challenge, and to adapt to and harness change. Indeed, our society will continue to mature and be a stronger society as our people get involved in the community, contribute with both constructive words and actions, and make a positive impact on the lives of people around them. Equipped with positivity, our citizens will be confident to pursue their aspirations regardless of the circumstances, and empowered to be the change-makers themselves.

Small Stitches, Big Difference

Great video on a former seamstress working at Edwards Lifesciences, an American MNC in Singapore producing replacement heart valves (likewise, careful stitching required). Good to see foreign MNCs taking innovative steps to engage our older workers, creating win-win situations. The jobs created are the kinds Singaporeans look for – good career progression, work benefits, and meaningful!

PM Lee on population issues at the Debate on President’s Address

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong spoke about development in population issues during his speech at the Debate on President’s Address on 28 May 2014. Recapping the changes so far, PM Lee said that the inflow of foreign workers per year has almost halved since 2011. This fall in growth is even more significant when excluding construction workers.

But these changes have to be carefully managed. Companies especially SMEs are feeling the pain. If firms cannot survive, many Singaporean jobs will be at risk. To help firms adapt to the new environment, the government has introduced various schemes including the Productivity and Innovation Credit.

Closer attention is also being paid to manage the inflow of two groups of foreign workers – foreign Professionals, Managers and Executives (PMEs) and foreign construction workers.

For foreign PMEs, “the issue here is less about the numbers, but about the quality of foreign PMEs and also about fair treatment for Singaporean PMEs”, he said. To ensure a level playing field for Singaporeans, the government will be implementing the Fair Consideration Framework from August this year.

On foreign construction workers, their social impact will be much felt given their larger numbers. While the government has tightened their inflow and pushed for productivity improvements, there are still many construction projects in need of workers. It will be a necessary trade-off to defer some of these projects such as the extensions for Gardens by the Bay and a new Science Centre at Marina East to reduce the number of workers required.

NPTD’s Addendum to the President’s Address

The President’s Address delivered in Parliament on 19 May 2014 had set out the Government’s plans for a better Singapore over the next few years.

Singapore is our home and we are committed to seeing our country flourish as a liveable city and an endearing home. The National Population and Talent Division will continue to work towards our vision of a sustainable population where Singaporeans are the heart of our nation, where we have opportunities to pursue our aspirations, and which we are proud to call our home.

Pre-school children posing at a playground

Our focus is on the following three key areas:

  • Sustaining our citizen population through a supportive environment for marriage and parenthood, engagement of overseas Singaporeans, and the integration of new immigrants;
  • Providing more opportunities as well as quality care for our rapidly increasing number of seniors, so that they remain active in society; and
  • Taking a balanced approach to slow the growth of our foreign workforce, while maintaining a vibrant economy with opportunities and jobs of the future for Singaporeans.
  • For more details, please refer to NPTD’s Addendum to the President’s Address (103kb .pdf).