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Written Answer by Mr Lim Swee Say, Minister for Manpower to Parliamentary Question on challenges in applying for assistance under Lean Enterprise Development Scheme

Notice paper 608. of 2017 for the sitting on 03 April 2017

Question No. 1081 for written answer

NMP: Thomas Chua Kee Seng

To ask the Minister for Manpower (a) what are the key challenges encountered by companies in applying for assistance under the Lean Enterprise Development Scheme (LEDS); and (b) how can these issues be addressed.

  1. The three main challenges faced by firms in applying for LEDS assistance are lack of solutions, lack of scale, and lack of impact: 
  2. First, lack of solutions: Some firms can identify their problems, but have not found the solutions. 
  3. We will help such firms by identifying and promoting more pre-qualified, ready-to-go solutions that can be quickly adopted to help companies become more productive. As shared in MOM’s Committee of Supply (COS) debate this year, there are 71 pre-qualified, ready-to-go solutions which can drive productivity improvement, skills development and innovation across various industries. Subsidies are made certain upfront for any firm adopting these ready-to-go solutions. 
  4. The LED Taskforce will spread awareness of the pre-qualified solutions through the SME Centres and industry associations to showcase their solutions to companies. 
  5. Second, lack of scale: Some firms have a solution in mind, but they are unable to implement them as they lack the scale or volume. 
  6. The LED agencies will help bring different firms that face similar issues together and help them find a common solution to transform as a cluster. 
  7. Third, lack of impact: Some firms have solutions, but their solutions lack impact. Their proposed plan only results in marginal improvements in productivity and in strengthening the Singaporean core. 
  8. As these firms are committed to change, the LED agencies will guide and handhold them, to improve their plan to achieve stronger outcomes. The LED taskforce will then help with funding support, and if necessary, transitional manpower support, to implement their plans. Companies can get more information from industry associations, the SME Portal, or from any SME centres.