Channel NewsAsia
Updated: 11/22/2012 00:19 | By Channel NewsAsia

Progressive Wage Model: NTUC to target employment hubs

Progressive Wage Model: NTUC to target employment hubs

Progressive Wage Model: NTUC to target employment hubs

SINGAPORE: The labour movement will target employment hubs in implementing its Progressive Wage Model from next year.

These are places with large concentrations of workers from various levels and sectors.

Some five months after introducing the model, which seeks to increase wages with skills upgrading and higher productivity, more employers have come on board the plan, said the labour movement.

One of those employers targeted is Changi Airport. The labour movement considers Changi Airport as an employment hub, with a large pool of staff doing various tasks.

The labour movement wants to move in with the Progressive Wage Model so as to improve the lot of those who make the air hub among the best, globally.

This is in addition to ongoing work within eight unionised clusters, covering sectors like retail and hospitality, to push forward the progressive wage agenda.

Clusters like infocomm and media, aerospace and aviation, and financial and business services have not launched their Progressive Wage Model but are works—in—progress.

Secretary—General of the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) Lim Swee Say said a key focus is to sustain real wage increases for workers, especially low—wage earners.

The labour chief said: "The workers must adopt a new mindset, that for their wages to continue to go up, they must upgrade their skill, they must improve in their productivity.

"For businesses to continue to grow, they must be able to attract, retain and make better use of every worker."

NTUC Assistant Secretary—General Cham Hui Fong said businesses should not have the mindset that certain jobs have a pre—determined dollar—value.

Ms Cham said: "Every industry will face different set of challenges... We must understand that if you want to keep the right workers, if you want to make sure that you can make best use of them, then you have to look after them."

One thing to look out for in 2013 is getting more small and medium—sized enterprises on the progressive wage journey.

A possible way is to tap on the Employment and Employability Institute to engage these enterprises and share lessons from success stories.

Within the unionised sectors, the labour movement estimated that the Progressive Wage Model can help about 100,000 workers in the next two to three years.

Changi Airport Group (CAG) welcomed the Progressive Wage Model (PWM) initiative by the NTUC.

In a media statement, CAG said it will work with NTUC and its airport partners to explore introducing PWM initiatives at Changi, and improve the productivity, welfare and career prospects of airport workers.

About 28,000 workers are employed by CAG as well as some 200 airport agencies and partners.

The workers are a mix of professional, executive, technical, frontline and operational personnel performing a broad range of functions.

— CNA/lp/de

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