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7 Rights Every Singaporean Employee Should Know By Heart

by Deana Zafir

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Not all Singaporean employees are aware of their employee rights. We believe it’s important to educate both first-time job seekers and our younger employees on their rights, to help clarify any possible misconceptions out there.

Here are some of the most common employment rights that every Singaporean employee and BGC Group hire should take note of:


1. Break Times


It seems like a no brainer but some employers fail to provide employees with a short break during their long working hours. Keep in mind that if you’ve worked:

A. For 6 hours straight, you’re legally obligated to have a short break.
B. More than 8 hours, your employer must be able to provide you with a lunch break. According to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) website, the break must be at least 45 minutes long.

*Side note: Employees covered by the Employment Act should not work for more than 44 hours a week.
 

2. Rest Days

Since we’re still on the topic of rest and work, did you know that legally you’re entitled to 1 rest day per week? However, whether or not your rest day falls on a weekend is up to your employer to choose (i.e. your rest day can fall on either a Wednesday, Thursday, or a Sunday).

There is a misconception amongst jobseekers both young and old that a weekend rest day must be provided. But MOM has proved that to be wrong. Your employer should, however, inform you of the rest days before the start of each month, if your rest days do not fall on a Sunday.
 

3. All Employees Have a Right to CPF

Did you know that as of July 2015, all employees (including part-time and casual workers) earning more than S$50 a month are entitled to CPF?

What is CPF?

CPF, also known as Central Provident Fund is a social security system that allows both Singaporean Citizens and Permanent Residents to set aside money for retirement, healthcare, home ownership, and family protection to name a few.

More information on your CPF breakdown below:

 

5. You Must Be Paid On Time

All employees must be paid on time. According to the Employment Act, you must be paid your salary at least once a month. Keep in mind that your salary must also be paid within 7 days, after the salary period has ended.

At times, bank and GIRO transfers might take some time as they’ll have to be done manually. In cases like this,

However, employees hired through BGC Group must remember:

  • If you’re hired through BGC Group, your salary will be paid directly to your bank account.

  • Contract employees are responsible for their own timesheet. They will receive their salary late if the timesheet has been submitted after the deadline. This is because we will need time to calculate and process the timesheet payment.

  • Please refer to your contract, if commission is involved.

  • Your final salary payment will depend according to your circumstances. More information on final salary payment is available on MOM’s website here.

  • Keep in mind that whilst most employers provide employees with additional allowance (i.e. to cover transport expenses if travelling is required), it is not mandatory.

 

7.  Employees Hired Through BGC Have Extra Help

As a reputable job agency, BGC Group aims to protect its employees. Although disputes are very rare, it’s important to remember, that you should make your workplace concerns known to your BGC representative. We will try to resolve your issues as best as we can.


Best Practices for Employees: 5 Things to Remember

 

Sure, all employees have various rights. However, as employees, this doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t be performing our very best - in order to keep our jobs and progress further in our career.

How to Succeed as An Employee with BGC Group:

  1. Open to learning: We may be done with school but learning is a process that never stops! As employees, when we’re open to learning, we’re also opening ourselves up to new experiences and opportunities.
     

  2. Be punctual: It goes without saying that punctuality is the key to surviving any job in life. Punctuality is also beneficial as it  improves your co-worker’s perception of you and also shows respect for the other party.
     

  3. Communication is key: It’s always important to communicate with your co-workers, supervisors and managers. Let them know if you’re planning to take a sick day off (mc), or if you’re heading out for a short holiday getaway.

    The best way to communicate your desire to take a day off is by:

  • Informing your direct supervisor or boss instead of your friends and co-workers. Schedule your holidays and days off in advance, if possible

  • Whenever possible, make your request in writing

  • Kindly remind your reporting officer the day before your planned holiday
     

  1. Be responsible: Personal responsibility is a skill employers constantly look out for. For instance, contract employees hired through BGC Group should remember to clock in daily, as well as complete their timesheets on time, in a legible handwriting.


It’s important for employees (both future and current), as well as employers, to acknowledge the employee rights MOM has put in place. These rules are put in place to protect employees from both prejudice and unfair treatment in the workplace. The rights listed in this article are also endorsed by Singapore recruitment agency, BGC Group. 


For more information on employee rights in Singapore, visit the Ministry of Manpower (MOM)’s website here. Alternatively, for those job hunting, please visit our BGC Group job portal here.

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