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Job seekers can turn to career centres in heartland

This article is more than 12 months old

Both white- and blue-collar job seekers can turn to career centres set up in the Housing Board heartland to access the full variety of vacancies that are available in Singapore.

There are at least eight of these satellite career centres in towns such as Jurong West, Sengkang and Woodlands, and they come under the new SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package introduced in May to help Singaporeans find jobs amid the Covid-19 outbreak.

Most of the job matches made via this package have been for non-PMET (professional, managerial, executive and technician) positions, said Manpower Minister Josephine Teo in Parliament yesterday.

She was replying to Workers' Party MP Gerald Giam (Aljunied GRC), who had asked whether unskilled job seekers can get help through other channels besides SGUnited Jobs and Skills Centres. He had said such centres seemed to focus on placing PMETs.

But Mrs Teo said: "Our experience is that matching people to PMET jobs takes longer. It has actually been easier to match people in non-PMET roles."

She added: "Right now, the focus has to be on the companies making these opportunities available to job seekers, letting the job seekers know that they are interested to take in people as trainees or for mid-career attachments."

Besides these satellite career centres, workers hunting for a job can also turn to other "touch points" with a similarly comprehensive list of vacancies available at companies.

These touch points include the five permanent career centres of the National Trades Union Congress' Employment and Employability Institute, and Workforce Singapore.

The SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package was announced by Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat in May when he unveiled the fourth Budget for Singapore to help overcome the upheavals of Covid-19.

The package was aimed at creating job opportunities for workers hit by the economic fallout from the pandemic.

Mrs Teo told the House that her ministry is also working with trade associations and business chambers of commerce as well as the Singapore Business Federation to match people and jobs.

The federation is maintaining the list of approved companies with vacancies.