SINGAPORE - The Tripartite Committee on the Employability of Older Workers, which consists of representatives from employers, unions and the Government, has updated guidelines on the re-employment of these workers, in line with the raising of the re-employment age ceiling from 65 to 67 from July 1, 2017. These are some highlights.
1. Employers should aim to re-employ the majority of their older employees. Re-employment contracts should be offered to all employees who are medically fit to continue working and whose performance are assessed satisfactory or better.
2. To provide greater certainty, employers should offer workers five-year re-employment contracts, up to the age of 67. Alternatively, employers could re-employ workers on a term contract of at least one year, renewable up to the age of 67, so long as the employee continues to meet the eligibility criteria.
3. Employers and employees are encouraged to be flexible in negotiating re-employment terms and benefits. Reasonable adjustments to employment terms, including wages and benefits, may be made - but employers should consider the impact on the income of re-employed staff, particularly low-wage workers.
4. Employers should consider all available re-employment options to identify suitable jobs for eligible staff. If employers are unable to offer re-employment, as a last resort, they are required to offer an Employment Assistance Payment (EAP). Revised EAP amounts - that could be 3.5 months of salary, at a minimum of $5,500 and capped at $13,000 - take into account rising wages and the fact that employers' re-employment obligations will be extended by two years.
5. Employers can consider leveraging on Medishield Life, for example, by providing additional Medisave contributions for re-employed staff. This would make medical benefits more portable.