Here are Reasons Why FWA Can Work

Flexible work arrangements

According to the Manpower Ministry’s Conditions of Employment 2018 Report released on 16 January 2019, more firms offered flexi-work arrangements (FWA) on both formal and ad-hoc bases in 2018, as compared to 2017.

The report covered responses from 3,700 businesses which employed over 1.3 million individuals between June and September 2018.

The proportion of companies that provided at least one formal form of FWA in 2018 stood at 53 per cent – a 3 per cent increase from 2017.

Meanwhile, firms that offered at least one form of ad-hoc FWA increased by 9 per cent – from 75 per cent in 2017 to 84 per cent in 2018.

“Employees, likewise, when offered flexible work arrangements, see it as a sign that they are valued by the company and that the company is willing to accommodate employees’ responsibilities outside of work.

“It is also about trust. Employees feel ‘you trust me to get the work done even though I’m not sitting at my desk’,” said Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamad.

Read the full article here: More Companies Now Offer Flexi-Work Arrangements

Here are some of the obvious benefits of flexible work arrangements.

Child, Work and Myself

Thanks to the flexible work arrangements initiative at National University Hospital, Senior Nurse Educator Teh Cheang Leng was able to keep her job and see to her child’s needs.

“It was a win-win situation for my child, my work and myself. The part-time arrangement was very helpful as my son was able to tide over the period and adjust better to the childcare environment. Instead of quitting my job, my boss said ‘why don’t you try this’, and it helped.

“We have to play many roles in the family, among them mother and caregiver of our parents. With a flexible work arrangement, we fulfil our career requirements as well as our role at home. That is very important.”

Read the full article here: How One Mother and Son Benefited

Facetime Overrated?

Ministry of Manpower and Ministry of Education Senior Parliamentary Secretary Low Yen Ling had this to say about the issue as part of a panel at NTUC’s U Family event in October last year.

“In Asian context, we tend to value face time. The bosses say, ‘I want to see my staff’. As a subordinate, you say, ‘I need to make sure my boss sees me’.

“That says something about our insecurity as a boss and subordinate to perform in our roles. Perhaps, in outlining our workplans, we are not clear about what we are supposed to be achieving. What are the key performance indicators? Do we really need face time to justify our relevance to organisations?”

Read the full article here: Tackling the Gender Diversity Issue at the Workplace

Companies to Change Mindset

LinkedIn’s Talent and Learning Solutions Vice President Feon Ang, who is in her 40s, has been helping companies in Asia Pacific build their workforce, engage and upskill top talent.

“Increasingly, we are seeing that success is not defined by six-figure salaries and promotions. At the end of the day, health, happiness and a good work-life balance are the most important measures of success for Singaporeans. Together with the rise of independent work and the gig economy, there is definitely a higher proportion of the workforce who opt for or have the desire for flexible work arrangements.

“Thus, companies should start embracing this trend or lose out on a significant proportion of the workforce, especially the younger professionals. Ultimately, companies need to think about how the workplace is enabling talent to get closer to achieving their own definition of success. This will help them retain their best talent.”

Read the full article here: What is the Future of Work?

Creating a Supportive Work Environment

An effective flexible work arrangement has to take into consideration the nature of the job, needs of the worker and business, support from co-workers and quality driven outcomes as a measure of productivity, says Chair of NTUC Women’s Committee K. Thanaletchimi.

The employer, supervisor and worker will each have their role to play. If either party is not supportive of the arrangement, the implementation of FWAs will be counter-productive.

“It is important for both supervisors and employees to establish and tailor mutually agreeable work arrangements based on clear deliverables and performance-based targets rather than hours clocked and physical presence.

“Supervisors also play an important role in the dynamics between workers on FWAs and their co-workers. Work-life programmes can only thrive in an environment of mutual co-operation and trust, where our working caregivers will feel truly at ease only in a supportive work environment.

Read the full article here: Supporting our Working Caregivers

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