Keeping an eye out for better employment? Salarymen (and women) who are used to surfing through the various job portals available in Singapore will be interested to hear about the newly-launched National Jobs Bank at www.jobsbank.gov.sg, which boasts over 16,000 jobs available only to Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents.
The National Jobs Bank launched on 14 July, and is still in its public beta phase, so users can expect to see more fixes and perhaps more functions added in the months to come. The Workforce Development Authority (WDA), which runs the site, is also working with unions, industry associations, employer groups, government and community organisations to encourage more employers and local workers to use the Jobs Bank.
Labour MP and NTUC Legal director Patrick Tay had been lobbying for this, and the rest of the Fair Consideration Framework, since 2011, after seeing how the “no quota” Employment Pass system was already putting the squeeze on local wages. He knew that an unchecked inflow of PMEs from around the world would be detrimental to workers here in Singapore and ultimately put our society on the edge.
The National Jobs Bank is supposed to be exclusively for the use of Singaporeans and Permanent Residents and is a key component of the Fair Consideration Framework – a process that employers have to go through to ensure that local candidates are considered for job vacancies first before they can apply for an EP to fill the role with a foreigner.
It’s a pretty straightforward site, and you can create a job-seeker profile by logging in with your SingPass. You can then flesh out your resume, search for jobs and set up SMS or email alerts for when suitable jobs come up.
Don’t expect anything fancy here. The Jobs Bank touts itself as a “self-help platform and will also support WDA’s career services and allow WDA to reach out a wider pool of local job seekers”. As a result it won’t have the extensive features that commercial sites boast, but nonetheless, there is some concern that it could dent the traffic flowing to other job portals.
Here, at least, you will find employers who are actively looking to hire Singaporeans and PRs. This is also partly in response to the recent concern over foreigners filling up too many vacancies because they were willing to price themselves below our market rate, and that in turn because they were working to bring money back to a home where the cost of living was lower.
The best thing to do now would probably be to sign up at the National Jobs Bank if you are looking for a job. One more fountain of opportunity never hurt anyone, and a Singaporean-first job marketplace will need the participation of both employers and local workers.
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