Post Date 06 Apr 10 JobsDB Ref. JSG400003000055042
Employment Pass or S pass application
At least 10 years working experiences
At least 5 years managing experiences
Good skill in computer – Excel, words….
Be able to work under pressure
Working date and hours:
Saturday – Thursday: 2-10PM
5 working days, Pick one day off between Monday to Thursday.
Interested applicants, please email a detailed resume with the following information as
well as a recent photograph to email@example.com:
Please refer to the attached job advertisement above for the vacancy of Administration manager1.
The investment company in question with operations in Singapore is apparently not interested in hiring Singaporeans for the job. This is disturbing because an open door policy of any country to foreign investments should be ideally a win-win scenario, benefiting the investment as well as the country and its citizens as a whole.
However, it appeared that the governmental policies in Singapore have failed to orientate the benefits of many investments in Singapore, including local firms, towards the progress and development of ordinary citizens as a whole.
In his speech, Finance Minister highlighted that “at the lower levels, foreigners are taking up the jobs that Singaporeans shun. Meanwhile at the upper levels, those foreigners coming in ended up improving job prospects for Singaporeans.2”
But given that so many PMET3 jobs are now hiring only foreigners in the same way they hired lower skilled workers, what is there left for the average Singaporeans?
Singaporean citizens have a few distinct disadvantages in competing with “foreign talents” in their own labour market:
1. National service takes away 2.5 years of college time and potential professional experiences for the males in Singapore. This lead to a unnecessary and tremendous effort on the Singaporean males to catch up with their foreign peers in terms of education and professional experiences.
2. National service call ups are a great disincentive for hiring firms to hire a Singaporean Citizen. As business competition increases, there is little allowances or tolerances for disruption to business operations. A Singaporean on in camp training (or reservist duty) although reimburses the salaries for absences due to reservist cannot reimburse the same for the opportunity cost4 incurred by the company. Hence, it is only natural that companies prefer any candidate without national service liabilities.
3. High cost of living and a rooted family means that a typical Singaporean will have to ask for compensation that way exceeds what a foreign talent would ask for in order to maintain the same standards of living.
4. Employers are constantly mindful about hiring local women as when the women do get pregnant, the employers will not just lose their opportunity cost in the absence during maternity leaves, having to pay the wages for the months of absences, but also risk the backlash of discriminatory complaints shall the company do anything that may suggest to the employee a form or discrimination. This makes the companies hire foreign talents in an unproven assumption that these talents will not one day also become be on maternity leaves.
Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugratnam said, “We must continue to attract top quality people from around the world, while investing further to provide the best opportunities for Singaporean talents to grow and develop, to the highest levels of expertise in a range of fields.5“ However, his statement appeared to be begging the question.6
If Singapore does not have top quality people and thus need to import them, why didn’t the government invest earlier and shape policies to produce local talents? Was it myopia on the government’s part that caused the current need or was it because it is a cheaper solution to government investing in talent building and nurturing?
In view of this we have not seen any real investment in developing local talents for the projected national needs. There are no real road maps, milestones, or even a vision for the future economic demands in line with developing the country’s core competencies7. This makes the following speech by Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports, Dr. Vivian Balakrishnan even more perplexing,
“But this is also why subsidised housing, healthcare, education and other essential services must be slanted in favour of Singaporeans. We cannot shield Singaporeans from competition but we can try to give Singaporeans a headstart. And we must allow our children, native born Singaporeans, to get a headstart by nurturing them to allow them to fufil their potential, and picking up Singaporeans when any of us stumble. I said, “put Singaporeans first”. But do it in an enlightened way.8“
With NS and indiscriminate FT9 policies, Singaporeans will never have a head start in our own economy compared to foreigners. This in addition to the fact that there are no real investments from the government to nurture local talents and the absence of providences to a strong social safety net for the citizenry unemployed, we have strong doubts on the truth and sincerity of the government when they proclaim “Singaporeans First.”
Will the government ever have the integrity to really stick to what it professes in the very own words of Dr. Balakrishnan,
“We have to start off with the perspective that we have to help Singaporeans first. Singaporeans must have jobs and be able to afford the basic things.10”
Written by: Joe Street
References / Glossary:
3 – Professionals, Managers, Executives and Technicians (PMET)
4 – Definition: The value of the use of resources in an alternative way that is not obtained when the resources are used in the current way.
7 – Core competencies are those capabilities that are critical to a business achieving competitive advantage.
9. – Foreign Talent