SINGAPORE – The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) is taking the lead in helping hotel employees affected by the Covid-19 situation by offering them temporary positions, as more jobs become available through the SGUnited Jobs initiative.
The MOM has hired 20 hotel employees as survey interviewers and is looking to fill another 180 positions, said Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamed on Friday (April 3) during a small-group engagement session with the new hires.
He added that the MOM will reach out to other affected industries such as the aviation sector to fill these survey interviewer roles for the ministry’s upcoming Comprehensive Labour Force Survey 2020.
“The lack of tourism arrivals has impacted many hotel’s customer service officers, so if you look at the match, it’s quite logical and natural where these (employees) are given the chance to work on the survey,” said Mr Zaqy.
“Many of them were just doing customer service, but now they’re learning data analysis, engaging the public and learning about new industries. Beyond giving them a part-time position, it’s about giving them the opportunity to train and learn new skills too.”
The temporary interviewers will start conducting surveys next week as part of their four-month stint. They will be paid $2,500 a month by the MOM but their respective employers have the option to top up their salaries separately.
The MOM worked with Singapore Hotel Association and recruitment agency Kelly Services to match affected employees to the roles.
There are currently around 3,000 jobs under the SGUnited Jobs initiative listed as part of a virtual career fair (VCF) at SGUnitedJobs.gov.sg.
A total of 10,000 jobs in industries such as infocomm technology, cleaning and logistics as well as the public sector, will be created under the initiative.
Available jobs include customer service assistants, social service officers, relief teachers and ambulance drivers.
The VCF is available till April 12.
Marketing communication executive Jerrald Ng was among the first batch of hotel employees to be temporarily hired by the MOM. He will be drawing the same salary working with the ministry as he did at Hilton Singapore, where he is employed, as the hotel will top up his pay.
“For the next three to four months, I’ll have a regular income and learn something outside of my usual job scope. It’ll also help the hotel deal with excess manpower now that occupancy rate is quite low,” said the 26-year-old.
In a previous update on May 31, Mrs Teo said that over 1,000 organisations had offered more than 11,000 traineeships for graduating students.
Mrs Teo spoke with fresh graduates from the Institute of Technical Education, polytechnics and universities in a virtual conference on Wednesday. She noted in her post that while the students acknowledged that the job market has become less favourable, they were not despondent.
Rather, they were curious about the programme, whether host companies would take trainees seriously and how they could best position themselves for sought-after jobs, she said.
The Ministry of Manpower is working with host organisations on two key aspects: exposing trainees to different companies and their networks and offering a variety of roles for selection, Mrs Teo said.
Both large and small firms were approached by Workforce Singapore to get onboard the traineeship programme.
A variety of roles, ranging from familiar ones in infocommunications, engineering and marketing to more niche positions, such as a funeral director assistant and food technologist, have been curated, she added.
“Such opportunities will allow our graduates to experience working in different industries and gain clarity on what they may want to pursue later in life,” Mrs Teo said.
In her post, she encouraged graduates and those thinking of switching career paths to stay “open-minded and resilient” and to tap the traineeship programme to achieve their longer-term or new career goals.
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