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#MOMchats Townhall Session between Acting Minister for Manpower Tan Chuan-Jin and Tertiary Students

This inaugural #MOMchats Townhall Session opened with Acting Minister for Manpower Tan Chuan-Jin discussing about "Making Career Decisions by Understanding Singapore's Employment Situation" with SMU students. Held on 11 October 2012, 7pm - 8pm, at the Singapore Management University.

What is #MOMchats about?

"Making career decisions by understanding Singapore’s employment situation"

The inaugural #MOMchats Townhall session was held on 11 October 2011 at the Singapore Management University (SMU). This event was held as part of the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) efforts to engage our stakeholders and to encourage our young Singaporeans to be involved in shaping our manpower policies and the Singapore we want to live in.

About 80 tertiary students from local polytechnics and universities had attended the first run of #MOMchats to ask Acting Minister (MOM) Tan Chuan-Jin about employment-related questions and seek his advice on career and work-life matters.

What was unique about #MOMchats? It was MOM’s first townhall session for which we have pre-sourced the topic and questions from tertiary students and youths prior to the event. Doing so gave us the opportunity to really understand the issues pertinent to them. We had also tapped on the platforms which are in sync with the lifestyle and behaviour of our youth today. Recognising that most of them have active social presences, social networks such as Facebook and Twitter were the main platforms used to publicise #MOMchats and garner questions from the crowd before the event.

During the session, we had used real-time Q&A application, Pigeonhole, to enable the townhall participants to post and vote for the questions, in real-time, which they would like to ask Acting Minister (MOM), using their mobile devices, tablets, and laptops.

For participants who were not able to join us at #MOMchats at SMU, we had also made prior arrangements to stream the entire townhall session live on this page previously to reach out to as many people as possible. They were also encouraged to tap on Pigeonhole to post and vote for the questions as well as take part in our quick polls.

If you had missed the session, or would like to re-visit the discussions we had on #MOMchats, you can view the encore video snippets of the interactive polls and most popular questions of the townhall session below.

Do continue to stay tuned to MOM’s digital platforms such as the MOM Facebook Page, our Twitter Page, and the Manpower Blog, for the latest updates on manpower matters!

Acting Minister started off the #MOMchats Townhall Session by sharing his views on youths’ aspirations

When asked during a poll on "What is the biggest challenge that our working population is facing today?", 35.8% felt that "employers going for the cheapest labour" was the most common sentiment. Acting Minister shares the perspective of both employees and employers on this issue.

Poll results for 'What is the biggest challenge that our working population is facing today?'

Another question which Acting Minister strongly felt about was – "Can we survive on passion today?"

"Continue to follow my heart despite lower pay" (30.4%), followed by "switch to other industry and further studies" (both 21.7%) were top answers to the second poll question – "How would you navigate your career path during uncertain economic times?"

Poll results for 'How would you navigate your career path during uncertain economic times?'

"High prestige and pay" (39.0%) seemed to be the most important factor to youths when choosing their career. Is there more to that? Find out what Acting Minister felt about this.

Poll results for 'What is the most important factor when choosing your career?'

We closed the session with an issue that affects everyone in the workforce – "Is work-life balance achievable in Singapore?" Acting Minister gave his interesting perspective on this issue.