Jobs Growth Incentive scheme prods firms to boost hires via wage savings: Josephine Teo

The scheme helps stretch budgets for manpower growth to create more good jobs. ST PHOTO: KELVIN CHNG

The Jobs Growth Incentive will help companies get very substantial savings on their wage bill, allowing them to be bolder in manpower expansion and bring forward hiring, Manpower Minister Josephine Teo said in a Facebook post yesterday.

She added: "As Singapore gradually reopens our economy and borders, some sectors will recover faster than others, some may be completely transformed. Companies will therefore have to pivot, to position themselves better for the post-Covid-19 world.

"This means new jobs opening up in some areas even as others see job losses. In the growing areas, we want to nudge employers to hire and also train Singaporeans."

The scheme helps stretch budgets for manpower growth to create more good jobs, she said.

Take a company with 10 local staff on average from January to August, which then has two new hires in September. These two new local hires can attract salary support of 25 per cent for the next 12 months for the first $5,000 of their salary.

If one of them is 45 years old, the salary support for the worker will double to 50 per cent, which means up to $45,000 in total for both of them. This is on top of the Jobs Support Scheme help for all 12 staff.

The firm must maintain a local workforce of more than 10 to receive the incentive for the full 12 months. The total payout is reduced proportionally any time someone from the original team leaves.

This means if one of the original 10 workers leaves the firm in October and a third local is hired as replacement, the firm will get the incentive for all three new local hires, but at a 90 per cent rate, as the original workforce shrank by 10 per cent. "That is fair, so companies don't just benefit from a replacement spree," Mrs Teo said.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 19, 2020, with the headline Jobs Growth Incentive scheme prods firms to boost hires via wage savings: Josephine Teo. Subscribe