New and Sustained Achievements Lauded at Work-Life Excellence Award Event 2014
Tripartite Advisory on Flexible Work Arrangements Launched to Guide Employers
7 November 2014
- The Tripartite Committee (TriCom) on Work-Life Strategy honoured 43 organisations and four individuals for their achievements in championing work-life harmony at the biennial Work-Life Excellence Award (WLEA) event this evening. Minister for Manpower Tan Chuan-Jin graced the event and presented the awards to the winners of the Work-Life Sustained Excellence Award, Work-Life Excellence Award and Work-Life Leadership Award.
- Speaking to the guests at the event, Minister Tan announced that the Tripartite Advisory on Flexible Work Arrangements (FWAs), which seeks to promote FWAs as a progressive employment practice in Singapore, would be issued this evening. He also emphasised in his speech that employers should implement FWAs to offer greater flexibility at the workplace to better attract and retain talent, in light of an ageing workforce and a tight labour market.
Recognising Consistently Exemplary Employers and Outstanding Middle Managers
- Now in its fifth edition, the WLEA1 introduced two new award categories: the Work-Life Sustained Excellence Award and Work-Life Star Award:
i) The Work-Life Sustained Excellence Award celebrates exemplary organisations which have consistently demonstrated outstanding success in work-life strategies.
ii) The Work-Life Star Award recognises middle managers and supervisors who enable and encourage successful work-life practices and adoption.
More information about the new awards is in Annex A.
- This year, four organisations, namely, Focus on the Family Singapore Limited, IBM Singapore Pte Ltd, Republic Polytechnic, and Sheraton Towers Singapore, were conferred the Work-Life Sustained Excellence Award for achieving the excellence standard over three consecutive award periods of two years each. The Work-Life Star Award went to Mr Muhamad Hamim Bin Abdul Rahim, a Senior Teacher in Boon Lay Secondary School. He spearheaded a variety of work-life initiatives such as the Health Charter which formalises the school’s commitment to creating a health and fitness culture, and the Recognition and Reward system where employees are awarded points and incentivised for their involvement in staff welfare activities. A full list of WLEA winners is in Annex B.
- Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Manpower and Education and TriCom Chairman Hawazi Daipi lauded the winners for their achievements. He said, "Many employers find it difficult to enhance work-life harmony in Singapore for reasons ranging from unfavourable perceptions to structural rigidity. Today’s winners, especially the Work-Life Sustained Excellence Award recipients, have shown that it is possible to overcome these challenges in the long run without compromising business success or the quality of employee performance. The TriCom recognises that more employers can initiate effective work-life solutions, and the Tripartite Alliance for Fair and Progressive Employment Practices can help by offering practical tools and tips."
Building Capability through the Tripartite Advisory on FWAs
- The TriCom also developed a Tripartite Advisory on FWAs, which Minister announced at the event. The new advisory embodies the efforts of the tripartite partners to support employers in the implementation of FWAs, and raise awareness of how FWAs could help organisations and individuals meet their work-life needs. It also provides useful information to employees and supervisors about broaching the subject of FWAs and managing FWA requests. The advisory can be found online at www.mom.gov.sg/fwa-advisory.
- NTUC Assistant Secretary-General Cham Hui Fong said, "We continue to see a growing demand for workplace flexibility. This advisory will serve as a useful guide for employers and employees to make flexibility a regular feature at the workplace. We see this as a positive step forward in creating a sustainable workforce where employees’ work-life needs can be taken care of if they have access to alternative work arrangements. We have been working closely with the tripartite partners to ensure that the advisory takes into consideration the needs of both employers and employees. NTUC will be engaging employers, supervisors and employees on the FWA advisory".
- SNEF Executive Director Koh Juan Kiat said, "FWAs are progressive employment practices that can help employers to be more flexible in manpower deployment, as well as to retain some workers. Due to the tight labour market, employers could also implement FWAs to attract those who wish to work part-time or from home. The Tripartite Advisory on FWAs provides employers with comprehensive information on work-life strategies. It also comes with a step-by-step approach to implement FWAs. We hope the advisory will give FWAs a further push."
Raising Awareness through the Work-Life Week
- In conjunction with the WLEA and to complement the issuance of the Tripartite Advisory on FWAs, the TriCom will be initiating a Work-Life Week (WLW) from 10 to 14 November 2014. The WLW comprises activities centred on flexibility and brings together the collective efforts of partners and stakeholders in the ecosystem to champion work-life harmony. Winners of this year’s awards will be sharing their stories and best practices at WLW events such as the CEOs’ Breakfast and Dialogue on "Culture Transformation: Build a High-Performing Workplace" and the Forum for HR Practitioners on "Culture Transformation". More information on the WLW can be found in Annex C.
The existing award categories in the WLEA are:
• Work-Life Excellence Award – top-tier award recognising employers for their effective and innovative work-life strategies;
• Work-Life Achiever Award – second-tier award meant to encourage employers for their good efforts in implementing work-life strategies; and
• Work-Life Leadership Award – introduced in 2008 to recognise individuals with outstanding contributions in enhancing work-life harmony in their organisations