FastJobs kiosks to connect older workers with temporary and part-time jobs

(From left) SPH's chief of digital business Julian Tan, Radin Mas MP Sam Tan and FastJobs' regional business development director Joelle Pang checking out the first FastJobs kiosk at Radin Mas Community Club, on Aug 9. ST PHOTO: SONG TAO

SINGAPORE - Radin Mas residents seeking temporary, part-time, contract and full-time jobs can now apply for them in their neighbourhood via SMS.

Mobile job portal FastJobs launched its first kiosk at Radin Mas Community Club on Thursday (Aug 9) as part of efforts to connect older workers with job opportunities near their homes. Another 15 to 20 kiosks will be launched at other community centres by the end of the year.

To use the kiosk, residents select a job they are interested in, SMS its job code to the mobile number provided and answer questions from employers sent by an SMS bot. Employers can then contact the applicants directly.

There are plans to expand FastKiosks, built with a simple user interface to cater to older residents, to more community clubs, as well as vocational schools, malls and residents' corners, the firm's regional business development director Joelle Pang told The Straits Times.

It will also be made available in more languages over time, she said.

But for a start, the pilot kiosk will offer job opportunities such as retail assistant and customer service associate positions from 10 employers in and around the Radin Mas township, including Cheers, KFC and Sasa. A larger pool of jobs, curated for older workers, will be added in the future, said Ms Pang.

FastJobs, a Singapore Press Holdings start-up, focuses on blue collar workforce recruitment and sees an average of 5,000 jobs posted a month in Singapore, with over a million downloads of its mobile app since its launch in 2015.

The FastKiosk was launched at a National Day observance event attended by about 500 residents.

Radin Mas MP Sam Tan joining residents in singing the national anthem at the National Day observance event at Radin Mas Community Club. ST PHOTO: SONG TAO

Radin Mas MP Sam Tan said that the community club's partnership with FastJobs is part of a move to "enable the community, especially the older workers, with digital literacy skills", in line with Singapore's Smart Nation initiative.

Mr Tan, who is Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Social and Family Development, said that Radin Mas is a good area to launch the kiosk as it is a mature estate with about a third of its residents aged 50 and above, many of whom seek transitional or part-time jobs.

"Hopefully this platform can provide flexible working arrangements for the elderly who only need to work on a part-time basis, while helping local companies to fill manpower needs," he said.

Mr Tan Kheng Hoe, who was at the event on Thursday, said that he would consider using the kiosk to look for part-time employment in customer service, where he can put his language skills in English, Mandarin, dialect and Malay to good use.

The 72-year-old, who has worked as a security supervisor, shipyard worker and taxi driver, said that it has been difficult to find employment due to his age and secondary school qualifications.

"I want to keep working because it is boring to retire and stay at home. But when I apply or leave my number with the person in charge, they never call me back," said Mr Tan.

"This platform is more convenient to use, but it would be better to have a Chinese language option or someone to assist as some of the elderly may not know how to use it," he added.

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