Flexible Work Becoming More Ubiquitous In Singapore
SINGAPORE – Even though the city-state is shifting to living alongside COVID-19, flexible work arrangements have become more prevalent among companies here, reported The Straits Times on Monday noon (1 August, SGT).
Many employers have decided to continue adopting work-from-home (WFH), which permits employees to perform their jobs remotely for a part of their work week, even though 100 percent of staff have been allowed to return to the office since 26 April 2022.
Besides major firms, government agencies have also embraced flexible workplace arrangements. For example, the Government Technology Agency and the Auditor-General’s Office allow their staff to work from home during some days of their work week.
Although flexible work most pertains to working from home, it includes other flexible arrangements, like job sharing and staggered work hours.
Apart from working from home, government agencies also permit some employees to stagger their work hours, like beginning earlier or later than the usual time.
The greater adoption of hybrid work arrangements in Singapore reflects the changes seen elsewhere in the globe. For instance, banks like UBS, HSBC, and Citigroup have implemented flexible work arrangements.
In particular, Citi Singapore will permit most of its employees to work remotely for up to two days per week come Q3 2022, with some teams already adopting such set-up. The US-based bank has around 8,500 full-time and contractual staff here.
During an event last week, Manpower Minister Tan See Leng stated that the authorities would like more firms to adopt the Tripartite Standard on Flexible Work Arrangements, which includes having a clear policy on how employees can request for such arrangements to be implemented at their work.
The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) said this will set the standards to ask for flexible work arrangements, while maintaining employers’ prerogative to decide on it, considering their business requirements.
However, consultations are expected to be conducted before the standards are finalised.