Manpower Ministry helps firms cope with labour law changes with free guidebook

A free 13-page guidebook has been launched by the Manpower Ministry (MOM) to help firms cope with the labour law changes taking effect today.

The book, which summarises the Employment Act changes, can be downloaded from the ministry's website. MOM is also introducing measures such as talks by the employer groups such as the Singapore National Employers Federation and Singapore Business Federation, as well as one-to-one help at various centres for small and medium-sized enterprises.

The changes that take effect from today include an increase in the basic monthly salary ceiling of the Employment Act from $2,000 to $2,500, which puts 150,000 more rank-and-file workers under its protection.

A further 300,000 professionals, managers and executives earning up to $4,500 a month can now claim sick-leave benefits and be protected against unfair dismissal.

Firms will also have to pay overtime to non-manual workers earning up to $2,500 a month, although the monthly salary used to calculate their overtime pay is capped at $2,250 to keep labour costs down.

For now, firms do not have to issue compulsory pay slips to their staff. This will be made compulsory in 2016, said MOM.

Meanwhile, MOM has worked with Singapore Polytechnic students to develop a free payroll software that can be downloaded from its website from April 20, 2014. The ministry said it welcomes feedback on how it can help firms issue payslips to workers.