According to a recent article in The Strait Times, MOM advises unemployment for Singapore citizens and permanent residents crept up in the third quarter of the year amid softer economic conditions, although total employment rose.
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate as of September was 3.1 per cent for citizens and 3 per cent for residents (citizens and PRs), up from 2.9 per cent and 2.8 per cent respectively three months earlier. This is the second consecutive quarter of increases.
Tougher job market for new entrants this year
The job market has not been kind to new entrants to the market according to a recent businessasione website article that shows a tougher job market for new entrants.
The under-30 unemployment rate rose to 4.3 per cent in September last year, from 3.9 per cent in September 2013, data from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) showed.
Since the beginning of the year, companies have been cautious about hiring because of falling oil prices and a slowing economy in China,” said Ms Linda Teo, country manager of Manpower Group Singapore.
The Monetary Authority of Singapore said the economy is facing uncertainty in the short term as the outlook for Singapore’s key trading partners remains gloomy.
Older people looking for work are finding opportunities hard to come by.
Despite all the politically correct words ageism at the work place remains a problem in Asia. This is a real problem as countries in Asia are “greying” very quickly.
This matches our experience and reflects our earlier posts comments that “Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia and Thailand markets are reasonably firm but patchy, especially at the senior end of the market”.
Some believe that “if you are over 40, you are almost always bound to be told you are too old, too expensive, too set in your ways, too overqualified.”
The truth is that “mindsets of older workers have already changed a lot, with mature job seekers more realistic about the positions and salaries they can command”.
Companies need to get smarter about employing these people as; they know how to work, value work not just for money but other social values involved and most importantly work smarter, know how teams work and get the job done.
The onus, however, remains on employers to restructure jobs and overhaul workplace culture to accommodate mature employees.
It is good for firms to be good to older staff. Singapore National Employers Federation vice-president Alexander Melchers said by treating older workers better, companies send a positive signal to younger staff that they will be looked after if they stay on. “They gain a competitive edge, not just in recruiting more elderly workers, but also in retaining younger people.”
A point well made. Many companies have sustainability policies but these seem to be totally missed by CEO’s and HR Directors when it comes to the aging work force.
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