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Occupational Progressive Wages for administrators & drivers: Requirements for Singapore employers from 1 March

Occupational Progressive Wages for administrators & drivers: Requirements for Singapore employers from 1 March

In order to renew existing work passes or apply for new work passes, employers must meet these requirements for Singapore citizens or PR in these roles.

From 1 March 2023, employers in Singapore will have to meet the Occupational Progressive Wages (OPW) and training requirements for administrators and drivers who are Singapore citizens or permanent residents, in order to renew existing work passes or apply for new work passes.

Developed by the National Wages Council, the OPW for administrators is a three-level career progression model while OPW for drivers is a two-level career progression model. They feature:

  • Training requirements to ensure that administrators and drivers are equipped with the skills needed to carry out their job functions.
    • At least 1 Workforce Skills Qualification (WSQ) Statement of Attainment, with no restriction on which WSQ course can be taken; or
    • An in-house training programme. This programme must be guided by training objectives, training modality, key training tasks and training duration to meet the training requirements. When required, employers are expected to show supporting documentation on their in-house training programme and records of workers who attended the training. On-the-job training can be counted towards the in-house training programme if it fulfils these requirements.
  • Progressive wages set at each level to ensure that administrators and drivers are paid wages that commensurate with their skills and productivity.

For full-time workers who work more than 44 hours a week and are covered by the Employment Act's Part IV, additional OPW wage requirements apply. 

The wage requirements recommended by the Tripartite Workgroup on Lower-Wage Workers, which were accepted by the Government in August 2021, will take effect for these two groups from 1 March. 

To employers time to adjust and comply with the requirements, there will be a six-month run-in period (March-August 2023), and employers will not be penalised for non-compliance during this period.

For training requirements, employers will be given a grace period to comply:

  • For new hires: six months from the new hire’s date of employment.
  • For existing employees: one year from when the OPW takes effect in March 2023; up to 29 February 2024.

More details on this – who is covered under 'administrators' and 'drivers', monthly gross wage requirements effective 1 March, and more.

Who will be covered from 1 March?

Administrators

  • Administrative assistants, with responsibilities such as:
    • Data entry
    • Receiving and registering documents,
    • Sorting and storing of files
    • Running of errands
    • Examples of jobs covered:
      • Data entry clerk, library clerk
      • Office attendant
  • Administrative executives, whose responsibilities include performing administrative tasks such as:
    • Accounting and bookkeeping
    • Customer-facing tasks, e.g. answering and directing phone calls, providing client information and services
    • Management of records, e.g. maintaining and updating filing and inventory
    • Money handling
    • Preparing production schedules
    • Secretarial tasks, e.g. arranging appointments, organising meetings
    • Examples of jobs covered:
      • General office clerk, customer service clerk, stock clerk, transport clerk, statistical clerk, legal clerk, accounting and bookkeeping clerk, production clerk, computer operations clerk, postal service counter clerk, finance and insurance clerk, travel agency clerk, proofreading clerk
      • Office cashier, bank cashier
      • Receptionist
      • Telephone operator
      • Secretary
      • Verbatim reporter
      • Typist and word processing operator
      • Concierge
  • Administrative supervisors, with responsibilities including:
    • Supervising staff performing administrative or clerical roles, e.g. general administration, customer service, records management, and data analysis
    • Managing personnel, resolving work problems, and coordinating work between units within an organisation
    • Examples of jobs covered:
      • Office supervisor

Monthly gross wage requirements (excluding overtime payments) for full-time OPW administrators (35-44 hours per week)

  • Administrative assistant: ≥S$1,500 
  • Administrative executive: ≥S$2,000 
  • Administrative supervisor: ≥S$2,800 

Hourly gross wage requirements for part-time OPW administrators

  • Administrative assistant: ≥ S$9.00
  • Administrative executive: ≥ S$10.49
  • Administrative supervisor: ≥ S$14.69

Drivers

  • General drivers who operate vehicles requiring Class 3 driving licence or below, e.g. motorcycles, cars, vans, and trams.
    • Examples of jobs covered:
      • Motorcycle delivery drivers
      • Van drivers
      • Tram drivers
  • Specialised drivers who operate vehicles requiring Class 4 driving licence and above, e.g. lorries, trailer trucks, and buses, and other specialised driver roles like chauffeurs.
    • Examples of jobs covered:
      • Trailer truck drivers
      • Bus drivers
      • Lorry drivers
      • Chauffeurs
      • Concrete mix truck drivers

Monthly gross wage requirements (excluding overtime payments) for full-time OPW drivers (35-44 hours per week)

  • General driver: ≥S$1,750
  • Specialised driver: ≥S$1,850

Hourly gross wage requirements for part-time OPW drivers

  • General driver: ≥ S$9.18
  • Specialised driver: ≥ S$9.70

Apart from the above, MOM shared that for full-time workers who work more than 44 hours a week and are covered by the Employment Act's Part IV, employers would need to adhere to the additional PWM gross wage requirements for overtime. In addition to meeting the PWM requirements for overtime, employers would need to adhere to the Employment Act's Part IV requirements for overtime, where the overtime rate of pay must be at least 1.5 times of the basic rate of pay.

A total of about 195,000 full-tme and part-time resident administrators and drivers will be covered under the OPW, and about 5,000 full-time drivers and estimated 32,000 full-time administrators will see an increase in their current wages to the applicable progressive wage levels.


Image / Ministry of Manpower, Singapore 

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