Ways to solve manpower crunch
IT IS ironic that we may have to hire foreign workers to clean foreign workers' dormitories ("Foreign labour crunch results in shortage of cleaners"; Monday).
The solution to the manpower crunch remains elusive and the tripartite bodies should examine the manpower situation and offer tenable, sustainable options.
My suggestions are:
>>Conduct a comprehensive study to determine the manpower requirements by sector, and develop a plan for sourcing for manpower that matches sector growth.
>>Analyse local sources of manpower (for example, fresh graduates, seniors, housewives and so on), and determine where each would be most suitably employed.
>>Localise professional, managerial and executive (PME) positions by granting foreigners employment passes only for positions that are unique or specific to their skill or competency requirements.
>>Cap the duration of engagement for foreign workers in the low-skilled categories.
>>Offer grants or incentives for building designs and structures that are productivity-friendly.
>>Set suitable productivity indicators for the respective sectors that would be the criteria for determining foreign worker quotas.
>>Create a multi-tiered foreign worker levy, with the levy amount ranging from high (for PME positions) to low (for jobs that are unattractive to locals).
>>Eliminate the S Pass and refine the criteria for granting Employment Passes and Work Permits to prevent employers from getting around the foreign worker restrictions.
>>Promote and support training institutions that provide a steady supply of local and foreign interns and graduates.
>>Open up the sources of labour to avoid having one nationality dominate a particular occupation or trade.