MOM puts 38 “double weak” firms under scrutiny

by Miklos Bolza14 Aug 2015
The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has identified 38 firms that have neglected to provide the proper level of support to Singaporean professionals, managers and executives (PMEs).
In a blog post on Thursday, Minister for Manpower, Lim Swee Say, wrote of the ministry’s attempts to detect and improve “double weak” firms. These organisations fail on two fronts, he wrote, having a weak Singaporean core and showing poor commitment to fair consideration in both hiring and developing local talent.
Lim spoke of MOM’s recent moves to support local workers. “Last month, I announced several measures to give stronger employment support to our local PMEs. Our purpose is to build a stronger core of Singaporean PMEs in all major sectors of the economy,” he wrote.
“One key measure is to enhance the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF). It was introduced last year to ensure that Singaporeans are considered fairly for job openings before firms apply to employ foreign PMEs.”
He stated that MOM had engaged 150 firms in the past year and had placed 38 of these on their watchlist. This means the Ministry will scrutinise Employment Pass (EP) applications of these businesses more closely. Additional details, such as the number of Singaporeans who applied and were interviewed, would have to be provided. The firms would have to consider existing employees for any vacant positions that arise as well.
Businesses on MOM’s watchlist would also have to increase their efforts to train and develop their local PMEs. If there is a shortage of local talent, expertise will be transferred from foreign specialists to boost Singaporean knowledge and allow locals to take on new opportunities and challenges, the Minister wrote.
Any “double weak” firms which were uncooperative or unresponsive would have their EP privileges curtailed, Lim warned.
 Lim wrote of his belief that these businesses would work in cooperation with MOM in strengthening their Singaporean core and helping local PMEs upskill and reskill for new jobs and careers.
“Working together, we can help companies to grow their businesses and Singaporeans to grow their careers, in a win-win partnership.”
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