All banks under the Association of Banks in Singapore (ABS), amounting to around 160, have agreed to new HR practises from ABS’ HR Advisory.
These are set to include more “inclusive” hiring choices and re-skilling staff to allow them to move into new jobs “in the face of technology disruption”.
The HR Advisory, launched by ABS on Wednesday, says banks need to conduct retrenchment “responsible” and “work with tripartite partners to support affected employees”.
The aim of these new commitments is to build a “strong Singapore core” of financial talent.
By “inclusive hiring”, ABS means hiring based on skills relevant to the job rather than necessary years of experience or specific “on-paper” qualifications.
ABS is “a non-profit organisation that represents the interests of the commercial and investment banking community”. It has been around for over 40 years and some well-known members include the Bank of Singapore, Barclays PLC, the Bank of India and HSBC.
At the launch on Wednesday, Senior Minister of State for Law and Finance, Indranee Rajah said: “Difficult as it may be, business as usual is not an option. As things stand, we are seeing two very contrasting phenomena – in ‘hot’ areas such as IT, there is a shortage of skilled talent, for instance, in data analytics and cybersecurity. On the other hand, we also know that firms could end up with surplus staff as they look to digitise and automate various aspects of their business.”
The HR Advisory was developed by ABS in conjunction with the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the Ministry of Manpower, the National Trades Union Congress, and the Singapore National Employers Federation.