New scheme launched to train 3,000 PMEs over the next three years

SINGAPORE - Professionals who are looking for a new job after being laid off, or just looking to switch careers, will get more help under a scheme that provides training and matches them to jobs with small and medium-sized firms.

Called P-Max, the heavily subsidised scheme by the Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA) was launched by Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin on Wednesday. It builds on WDA's Max Talent programme, which has placed 1,000 workers in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) since 2012. P-Max aims to benefit 3,000 professionals, managers and executives (PMEs) by the end of 2017.

Similar to Max Talent, P-Max will be run by the Association of Small and Medium Enterprises and the Singapore National Employers Federation. PMEs will go for a two to three-day workshop to learn skills to work better in a small and medium firm.

There will be new modules such as workplace ethics and performance reviews, as well as a new one-day workshop for SME supervisors to learn communication skills.

Highlighting the tight labour market and the importance of SMEs in Singapore's economy, Mr Tan said: "The intent really is to help support our PMEs in their effort to continue to improve themselves. To those who need help seeking employment, we help place them and equip them with skills."