MOM to hire 200 temp staff from hotels and other sectors hit by Covid-19

Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamed meets the new hires on April 3, 2020. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

SINGAPORE - The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) is taking the lead in helping hotel employees affected by the Covid-19 situation by offering them temporary positions, as more jobs become available through the SGUnited Jobs initiative.

The MOM has hired 20 hotel employees as survey interviewers and is looking to fill another 180 positions, said Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamed on Friday (April 3) during a small-group engagement session with the new hires.

He added that the MOM will reach out to other affected industries such as the aviation sector to fill these survey interviewer roles for the ministry's upcoming Comprehensive Labour Force Survey 2020.

"The lack of tourism arrivals has impacted many hotel's customer service officers, so if you look at the match, it's quite logical and natural where these (employees) are given the chance to work on the survey," said Mr Zaqy.

"Many of them were just doing customer service, but now they're learning data analysis, engaging the public and learning about new industries. Beyond giving them a part-time position, it's about giving them the opportunity to train and learn new skills too."

The temporary interviewers will start conducting surveys next week as part of their four-month stint. They will be paid $2,500 a month by the MOM but their respective employers have the option to top up their salaries separately.

The MOM worked with Singapore Hotel Association and recruitment agency Kelly Services to match affected employees to the roles.

There are currently around 3,000 jobs under the SGUnited Jobs initiative listed as part of a virtual career fair (VCF) at SGUnitedJobs.gov.sg.

A total of 10,000 jobs in industries such as infocomm technology, cleaning and logistics as well as the public sector, will be created under the initiative.

Available jobs include customer service assistants, social service officers, relief teachers and ambulance drivers.

The VCF is available till April 12.

Marketing communication executive Jerrald Ng was among the first batch of hotel employees to be temporarily hired by the MOM. He will be drawing the same salary working with the ministry as he did at Hilton Singapore, where he is employed, as the hotel will top up his pay.

"For the next three to four months, I'll have a regular income and learn something outside of my usual job scope. It'll also help the hotel deal with excess manpower now that occupancy rate is quite low," said the 26-year-old.

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