An extra bonus is headed towards the nation’s cleaners. Those who are citizens or permanent residents of Singapore and who have been working in the same firm for one year or more are to receive a bonus as well as their three percent yearly salary increase.
The Tripartite Cluster for Cleaners (TCC) released details of the mandatory bonus and increase on November 15, Thursday. The bonus and is to take effect in January 2020, and the pay raise in July 2020, to give employers time to adjust to the new scheme. The TCC added these adjustments to their existing Progressive Wage Model (PWM), which was published in 2016.
For relief and part-time cleaners, the guidelines indicate they must be paid a pro-rated bonus based on the contractual hours they worked that year, provided they’ve been working for that company for at least one year.
But, due to changes in service providers, some cleaners may not be able to meet the requirement for minimum service length, noted the TCC. In cases such as these, employers are still obligated to provide cleaners with the bonus on a pro-rated basis.
According to a joint statement from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and the National Environment Agency, “This will help uplift workers’ total income levels and their savings, and motivate them to stay with the same employer. Employers will be better able to attract and retain workers, and to invest in their training when there are better retention rates.”
The Tripartite Cluster said in a statement, “With the strong support of the tripartite partners, the introduction of a mandatory PWM Bonus is indeed a positive change for our resident cleaners as it will uplift their overall wages and add to their savings. Our cleaners will thus be more motivated to stay longer with their employers, and their employers will in turn be more inclined to send them for training which will help to raise productivity. Service Buyers and end users of cleaning services can look forward to better service outcomes and standards. This will bring about a win-win outcome for all stakeholders.”
More than 40,000 cleaners from 1,300 cleaning companies will benefit from the bonus and pay raise. Bonuses will be equivalent to at least two weeks of the cleaners’ monthly pay and is not dependent on performance.
At the moment, cleaners are generally paid between S$1,120 and S$1,320 a month, which means that this will be raised to S$1,312 and S$1,530 by 2022.
National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) Assistant Secretary-General Zainal Sapari welcomed the bonus and pay raise in a Facebook post published on November 15, comparing the PWM Bonus to a ladder that lets cleaners climb to achieve more progress. “It takes into account sectoral differences, looking beyond a one-size-fits-all approach; it raises wages in a sustainable way because it is matched with the necessary productivity growth.”