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Redundancy and Re-entry into Employment, 2014

Redundancies rose amid restructuring; Fewer residents laid off and majority found new jobs quickly

  1. Fewer residents were laid off in 2014 compared to the previous year even as overall redundancies rose. The rise in redundancies was from non-residents, resulting in a fall in the resident’s share of redundancies. As the labour market remained tight, re-entry into employment among residents who were laid off improved, of whom half secured employment within a month of their redundancy. These are the key findings from the latest report released by the Manpower Research and Statistics Department, Ministry of Manpower.

    Redundancy1 and Re-entry into Employment2

    More redundancies due to restructuring
  2. Redundancies rose over the year in 2014 (12,930 or 6.3 workers made redundant for every 1,000 employees) compared to 2013 (11,560 or 5.8 per 1,000), as firms cited restructuring and re-organisation as top reasons for the layoffs. Fewer residents (from 7,520 to 7,240) were laid off in 2014.

    Majority of the residents laid off re-entered into jobs quickly
  3. As the job market remained tight3, the rate of re-entry into employment for residents made redundant (within six months of redundancy) rose for the third successive quarter to 59% in December 2014. Over a longer period of within 12 months, 68% of residents made redundant in the first three quarters of 2014 re-entered employment by December 2014, slightly higher than the re-entry rate of the preceding cohort (66%). About half of these individuals took a month or less to secure re-entry into employment.

    Layoffs rose in services and construction
  4. The increase in redundancy was mainly from services. Layoffs in construction also rose amid a decline in private sector construction output. More than two-thirds (68%) of residents laid off in the first nine months who re-entered employment by the end of 2014 secured new jobs in an industry different from which they were laid off, largely similar to cohorts after 2009.

    PMET’s share of total redundancy declined in 2014
  5. PMETs formed a smaller share of layoffs in 2014 (51%) compared to 2013 (56%). Their likelihood of redundancy remained higher than clerical, sales & service workers and production & related workers. All three broad occupational groups recorded higher re-entry rates in 2014, more so for the non-PMETs, whose rate remained higher than that of PMETs.

    For More Information
  6. The report is available online on the Ministry of Manpower’s Statistics and Publications webpage. It goes beyond the quarterly reporting in the Labour Market Reports to provide additional analysis on the incidence of redundancy, reasons for redundancy, profile of establishments with redundancy, time taken to secure re-entry into employment and the shift in industry among those who re-entered employment.


  1. Data pertain to private sector establishments (each with at least 25 employees) and the public sector.
  2. Data are based on CPF records.
  3. The annual average resident unemployment rate was 2.7% in 2014, a slight decline from 2.8% in 2013. Source: “Labour Market, 2014”, Manpower Research & Statistics Department, MOM. Job vacancies also rose over the year to 67,400 in September 2014, from 61,900 a year ago. Source: “Job Vacancies, 2014”, Manpower Research & Statistics Department, MOM.