Support Site for The Unemployed & Underemployed
Monday September 2nd 2019

Young ex-regular transitional story into being a chauffeur

I have a Higher Nitec in Mechanical Engineering and  was an ex regular in the Armed Forces for 6 years. My contract was however not extended and I later  joined the jobless rung.

In the middle of the last decade, quite a number of specialists never got their contracts extended due to changes in career advancement policies.

It has shaken our belief that regular jobs¬†are considered ¬†the ‚Äúiron rice bowl‚ÄĚ as the previous generations often preached.

Tried a few technical posts like Shipyard Foreman, Service Advisor for Automotive Workshops as well as Sales Administrator for Automotive Parts. All these posts were flooded with foreigners and the low salary is  also an issue.

But being the lone local worker in a sea of foreign workers means you suffer from the painful office politics of being elbowed out by the united foreign staff Рbe it from the  PRs or Work Permit Holders.

During the Lehman Brother crisis, I returned to the uniformed groups ¬†working in Certis Cisco as an Auxiliary Police Officer. Despite¬† the high gross pay advertised in the job recruit ads, after breaking down the sub components such as assignment allowance, ¬†etc ¬†my basic was only $1,100, slightly better than some of my colleagues’ ¬†basic of $900 due to my ex- regular experience.

This spells low overtime rates but  the major turn off is the liability of the 44 hours work week, with a deductible one hour per shift regardless of whether a break is  given and  the 44-hour  work week can be averaged off for the first  3 weeks of the month.

Every single clause of the employment act was fully scrutinised to squeeze every single ounce of juice out of us. That was the first and  last job experience with a semi-government corp. I can understand how the bus drivers at SMRT felt.

Now, I’m happily working as a chauffeur, finding my niche market in a highly competitive job market.

I was often rebuked for not finding a proper job, competing with retirees.

The alarming trend is that I find more and  more young people like me, late 20s to early 30s entering this trade, be it a Chauffeur or Taxi Driver.

Something must be wrong in my prosperous ¬†country…

Howard

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