Singapore focuses on skills to improve employability of workforce

Employees will receive more training opportunities to advance their careers or find new employment in the event of retrenchment.
By: | April 20, 2023

Singapore will push ahead with more initiatives to upskill the workforce and help displaced employees find re-employment, said Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Lawrence Wong.

The SkillsFuture programme, which allows Singaporeans aged 25 and above to take skills-related courses using credits given by the government, will be further streamlined through lower costs that will allow more individuals to participate in training.

The programme will work with industry partners to come up with more effective training programmes, such as work-based learning options, to achieve more meaningful employment outcomes. The government is also looking to hold a dialogue with tripartite partners such as employers and unions on how it can support workers looking to train and learn new skills, said DPM Wong.

He also revealed that measures are being considered to reduce the wage gap between professions, including professionalising skilled trades such as the work done by electricians and plumbers. This may include enabling them to attain accreditation for their skills and set a clearer progression ladder as they take on greater responsibilities.

READ: Employees in Singapore seek higher pay despite fears over job security

More support for displaced employees can also be expected, with a “targeted re-employment scheme” expected to provide benefits for those who have lost their jobs, while encouraging them to continue with their upskilling and job search, reported Today.

Highlighting the importance of creating a learning society based on skills, DPM Wong added, “Businesses must shift their emphasis from hiring (based on) credentials to hiring (based on) skills and invest in the growth of their employees. And Singaporeans themselves must be open to change.”