In the third round of our SME Special series, we will share with you two more programs that you should tap, and this time, to support your employment and training needs.
In light of a tighter labor market and stricter regulations pertaining to hiring foreign workers, finding the right workers and getting them to stay committed to your vision may be difficult. However, these programs could perhaps help you fill the gaps in your organization and win brand loyalty.
Enhanced Training Support for SMEs
This program has been designed to help SMEs like you to send your employees for training, and at little expense on your part. It is only open to companies that are registered or incorporated in Singapore and do not employ more than 200 people.
Another condition that applies is that the course trainee must be a Singapore citizen/PR and an employee hired in accordance to the Employment Act.
Benefits for employers:
- Pay as little as 10% for certifiable courses supported by WDA or Academic CET programs at polytechnics and ITE (available only to citizen employees);
- Absentee payroll funding of 80% of basic hourly salary at a cap of $7.50;
- Low income earners (S$1,700 and under) continue to receive course fee funding at 90% of their basic hourly salary under the Workfare Training Support Scheme.
Special Employment Credit (SEC) for Silver Generation Workers
The SEC was first rolled out in 2011 and has been enhanced in 2012 to further support employers who hire Singaporean workers aged over 50 years old and earn up to S$4,000 monthly. The enhanced program will span for five years, ending December 2016.
Under this program, so long as CPF contributions are made for said workers, employers will automatically be assessed by the CPF Board and be eligible to receive credit worth 8% of an employee’s monthly wage. This amount however, is capped at S$240 per employee per month. The payments will be made twice a year i.e. September (for the period of January to June) and March (for the period of July to December).
Commenting on both programs, Mr. Satish Bakhda, Head of Operations at Rikvin, said, “We stand by the Enhanced Training Support program for SMEs as well as the SEC and are optimistic that they will play a role in improving national productivity from the ground up. By providing said incentives, smaller enterprises are provided not only with funding but the necessary tools and framework to manage manpower challenges. We hope more of our clients and visitors will tap these programs and create a happier and more inclusive work environment for their employees.”