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Business, Singapore

Janice Heng
Friday, May 30, 2014

Business, Singapore

Parliament: Guidelines on flexible work arrangements coming up, says Hawazi

The Straits Times | Janice Heng | Friday, May 30, 2014

SINGAPORE - This will be in conjunction with a week-long work-life campaign. "What we want to do is to enlighten employers and employees on the benefits of work life," he said. Work-life harmony will not just improve employees' quality of life, but can benefit firms as it helps them attract and retain workers.


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Here is a transcript of the speech delivered today by Mr Hawazi Daipi, Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Education and Manpower:

Speech by Mr Hawazi Daipi, Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Education and Manpower at the Debate on the President's Address 2014, 30 May 2014, 3:00 PM, Parliament

Dear Madam Speaker, I just would like to make some clarifications about some of the points raised yesterday on the promotion of work-life strategies. Ms Lee Li Lian said yesterday that work-life harmony has been tackled exclusively in the domain of manpower policies and she said this clearly has not worked. Contrary to her views, I would like to state that firstly, it is not purely a manpower matter. We involve different parties and government agencies. We try to promote different aspects of working, work-life, and enhancement of productivity in the tripartite network that I chair1.

Secondly, the take-up rate by companies has improved. Over the years, more companies have offered at least one form of flexibility for their workers. In 2007, for example, only 25 per cent of companies offered at least one form of flexibility work arrangement, and it had increased to 38 per cent in 2011, and up again to 41 per cent in 2012. Does more need to be done to promote work-life? Yes, indeed. However, all the tripartite partners are working very hard together to promote it not just among companies but also among workers.

Madam Speaker, I am very pleased to inform Members that the Tripartite Committee (TriCom) on Work-Life Strategy will be organising a week-long Work-Life Campaign in November 2014 to raise awareness of the benefits of work-life strategies, and encourage both employers and employees to adopt flexible work arrangements. Quick point, in conjunction with the Work-life Campaign, the Tricom will issue a Tripartite Advisory to set out guidelines on flexible work arrangement implementation and provide useful resources for organisations looking to implement such arrangements. Essentially, what we want to do is to enlighten employers and employees about the benefits of work-life. It is not just to improve the quality of life or workers, but also to improve the companies and organisations. Because if they are able to attract and retain the workers that they want, I am sure that their productivity will also improve.

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