HELP’S AT HAND: FOR WORKERS

Singapore Budget 2020: He made the switch from pharmaceuticals to logistics

Mr Kenneth Lee packing cartons of medical products into special boxes for cold chain delivery. The former senior production technician went for a professional conversion programme when he was hired as an assistant manager at ST Logistics. ST PHOTO: M
Mr Kenneth Lee packing cartons of medical products into special boxes for cold chain delivery. The former senior production technician went for a professional conversion programme when he was hired as an assistant manager at ST Logistics. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

Mr Kenneth Lee, 56, used to be a senior production technician in the pharmaceutical sector, operating and maintaining equipment and doing line clearance. Last year, he decided to look for new opportunities in logistics, but had to pick up new skills to make the switch.

ST Logistics, which hired him as an assistant manager for healthcare at significantly higher pay, put him on a nine-month training programme. Through the professional conversion programme (PCP), he learnt to collaborate with customers to understand service quality and analyse how to improve inventory management and cost savings, among other things.

"It's not easy for a middle-aged person like myself to switch industries. Fortunately, my supervisor is willing to guide and listen," he said.

ST Logistics has hired close to 50 mid-career workers like Mr Lee through logistics and supply chain PCPs.

Senior vice-president for human resources Tan Wong Tong said the employees hired through the scheme "bring with them very important people management skills, and command respect because of the years of experience they have".

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 19, 2020, with the headline He made the switch from pharmaceuticals to logistics. Subscribe