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Tripartite Guidelines on Re-employment of Older Employees Revised and WorkPro Schemes Enhanced for Greater Employment Support to Older Workers

  1. The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) announced at the Committee of Supply Debate on 8 April 2016 that the re-employment age will be raised from 65 to 67 on 1 July 2017. 
  2. To prepare employers and employees for this change in the re-employment landscape, the Tripartite Committee on the Employability of Older Workers (Tricom) has issued a set of revised Tripartite Guidelines on the Re-employment of Older Employees. (See Annex A for background information about the Tricom.)
  3. Beyond raising the re-employment age, it is also important to change the nature of jobs and the working environment for older workers through implementing good age management practices and redesigning job processes at the workplace. The WorkPro Age Management Grant and Job Redesign Grant will be enhanced to provide comprehensive support to encourage employers to put in place age-friendly practices to make work easier, safer and smarter for older workers to maximise their potential at work. The enhanced WorkPro schemes will take effect from 1 July 2016.

    WorkPro – Support for Age-Friendly Workplaces and Jobs
  4. Jointly developed by the MOM, Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA), Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF) and National Trades Union Congress (NTUC), the WorkPro Age Management Grant and Job Redesign Grant aims to support the employment and employability of older workers by fostering progressive and age-friendly workplaces and jobs. 
  5. A total of $66 million will be made available to companies over three years under the enhanced WorkPro schemes (refer to Annex C for the Factsheet). The key enhancements to these schemes for older workers are:
    • Increased funding support under Job Redesign Grant. Up to 80% of project costs, capped at $300,000, can be funded under the Job Redesign Grant – twice the level of funding support under the existing grant.
    • Job Redesign Rider (*New). Companies that receive grants under the Capability Development Grant and Inclusive Growth Programme can receive additional funding under the Job Redesign Rider up to an overall 80% cap, nett of other grants, if their project makes jobs easier, safer and smarter for their older workers.
    • Continued support through Age Management Grant. $20,000 in funding to support employers in the adoption of an increased number, from two to four, of good workplace and hiring practices that directly benefit older workers.
  6. Companies can apply or find out more about the enhanced WorkPro by contacting either NTUC/e2i or SNEF.

    Programme Partners NTUC/e2i SNEF
    Hotline 6213 8383 6290 7694
    Email workpro@ntuc.org.sg wdm@snef.org.sg
    Website www.ntuc.org.sg www.sgemployers.com
    Revised Tripartite Guidelines on the Re-employment of Older Employees
  7. There are two key changes in the revised Tripartite Guidelines:
    • Employment Assistance Payment (EAP) amounts. Employers should consider all available re-employment options to identify suitable jobs for eligible employees. If employers are unable to offer re-employment, as a last resort, they are required to offer an EAP. The Tricom reviewed the EAP amounts in line with the new re-employment age. The revised EAP amounts took into consideration rising wages and the fact that employers’ re-employment obligations will be extended by two years.
    • Medical benefits. The Tricom has added leveraging Medishield Life (e.g. by providing additional Medisave contributions) as an option for employers to consider. This would make medical benefits more portable.

    Gazetted Tripartite Guidelines still apply for re-employment disputes
  8. The Tripartite Guidelines dated 11 January 2011, which were published in the Government Gazette to provide a basis for mediation and adjudication of re-employment disputes, will continue to apply in such disputes, up until 1 July 2017.
  9. The tripartite partners encourage employers to voluntarily re-employ their employees beyond age 65 before legislation takes effect. Employers with Singaporean workers aged 65 and above will continue to receive an additional wage offset of up to 3% till 1 July 2017, in addition to the wage offset of up to 8% under the Special Employment Credit1.

FOOTNOTE

  1. The Special Employment Credit provides employers with a wage offset for workers aged 55 and above earning up to $4,000 a month.