As announced on 4 March, Singapore's government is enhancing the Work-Life Grant in a bid to help women juggle career and childcare responsibilities. The Work-Life Grant, which started in 2013 and is due to expire at the end of this month, will be extended and enhanced from 1 July.
Some of the key enhancements include: simplified application criteria; increasing the coverage of the employer payments; and higher grant per employee. [full story]
Human Resources analysed the development further by speaking to local employers on their work-life balance priorities for employees this year, here are the results.
Dr. Christopher Fong, organisational health and wellbeing psychologist
Top of Dr Fong's agenda would be to optimise the grant for personal coaching, in context of how values are affected in career transition.
As for work-life balance, the initiative that would be top priority is flexi-hours for those who are married. "Time in the context of family is a precious commodity and if we are to retain our best talent, organisations would do well in reviewing their WLB policies for such employees with new and young families," affirms Dr Fong.
The employees who are single should not be forgotten either. He adds: "Time for them to attend to their personal admin matters should also be reviewed and considered."
Beatrice Liu, founder and COO, Kairos Ygeia
Kairos Ygeia is looking to utilise the government's developmental grant to take steps towards implementing work-life strategies, particularly flexible working arrangements (FWAs).
"Our number one work-life priority is to allow employees to work from home for one day per week, so they have flexibility to work on their projects on their own time," Beatrice explains.
To summarise, the key enhancements to the grant include:
- Simplified application criteria - Employers no longer require at least 20% of all employees to be on flexible work arrangements to qualify for the grant.
- Increasing the coverage of the employer payments - Employers will receive S$2,000 per year over two years for each employee on flexible work arrangement – up to 35 employees.
- Higher grant per employee - Employers that provide job sharing for PMETs can receive S$3,500 per employee, up from a maximum of $2,000 per employee under the current scheme.
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