Would you consider this a safe job?

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If you need a change of job, why not consider the role of a workplace safety officer?

The Singapore Institution of Safety Officers (SISO) just launched the first professional standard for workplace safety and health professionals in Singapore on 30 November 2016.

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Much like the Labour Movement’s Progressive Wage Model for low-wage workers, the professional standards has a career progression component – from officer to director, specifying the number of years of experience and skillsets needed for each level.

Besides that, the standard also spells out the code of conduct and ethics for WSH officers.

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The standard was as a result of a call by the NTUC’s Secretary-General Chan Chun Sing to industry leaders to professionalise the industry during a closed-door dialogue with SISO, which is also one of NTUC’s 41 U Associate partners.

SISO mobilised the extensive network of unions and enterprises through the Labour Movement to raise WSH standards across all sectors and enhance and deepen the skillsets of WSH professionals.

SISO’s honorary President Seet Choh San said the standard mitigates the mismatch between an employee’s skills and an employer’s needs.

“This new standard helps align expectations, so if companies want a regional safety director in future, they can just signal that they’re looking for a level-four professional… All the requirements – experience, skills – are set out in the standard.”

Patrick Tay

Talking about mismatches, NTUC’s Assistant Secretary General Patrick Tay also raised a similar point about mismatches this year during a media interview:

“Through our interaction with PMEs, we see many facing mismatches in the areas of skills, jobs and job expectation…”

While we’re seeing some slowdown in the economy, it is rather heartening to see how individual sectors are stepping up to professionalise and up their ante to tackle the winds of change and disruption. Perhaps workers need to also set realistic job and skills expectations to be matched to these available jobs.

Hopefully more industries can do more to improve their outlook so that Singaporeans can look forward to more quality jobs as we progress forward.

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Arthur Lee

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