National Wages Council recommends structured training to spur productivity

Real total wages rose by 4.2 per cent on average last year, up from 3.2 per cent in 2017, according to the Manpower Ministry on May 29, 2019.
Real total wages rose by 4.2 per cent on average last year, up from 3.2 per cent in 2017, according to the Manpower Ministry on May 29, 2019.PHOTO: ST FILE

The National Wages Council (NWC) has urged employers to offer their staff structured training, saying this would encourage productivity growth to support and sustain wage hikes.

The council also said yesterday that it expects companies that improved their productivity last year to give their workers a one-off payment. It also urged companies to raise the monthly salaries of low-wage workers by between $50 and $70.

The council's recommendations, which took into account economic growth prospects, productivity and workforce training trends, were accepted by the Government, Singapore's biggest employer.

It was highlighted by the council that in 2018, wages had grown faster than the productivity growth of 2.4 per cent. The proportion of employees receiving structured training, including classroom training and workshops, has not improved over the past decade.

"Wage growth must be supported by productivity growth," said the council. It added: "All employers should develop a training plan that meets their current and future requirements."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 31, 2019, with the headline 'NWC recommends structured training to spur productivity'. Print Edition | Subscribe