After much anticipation, the Workforce Advancement Federation (WAF) was officially launched through an insightful Summit on Thursday, 16 July 2015. The half-day summit was graced by Minister of State (MOS) for Ministry of Trade and Industry, Mr Teo Ser Luck.
With the support of SPRING Singapore, Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA), Strategic and Preferred Partners, the event was a resounding success and drew participation from more than 250 SME Owners and Senior Management representatives from local enterprises. The guest speakers who are industry veterans and established business leaders with human resource related award recognitions shared their key workforce strategies applicable for adoption by enterprises. Participants gained much insights and perspectives through the practical solutions approach of the Summit.
ADVANCING A COMPETITIVE WORKFORCE
Built around two main ideas – Workforce Productivity and Building A Strong Community of Workforce Champions, the launch revolved around the concept of a “Honeycomb” which is analogous to the solidarity of bees; bees that not only work hard and fast, but also towards a common goal in unison. With the same ideology, WAF is the platform of influence that brings enterprises together in a community that forges towards building a well-rounded, adaptable and forward-looking workforce within the local business community.
In commemoration of SG50 and a tribute to Singapore’s founding father Mr Lee Kuan Yew who has been advocating the importance of productivity as early as 1967 in his speech, the Federation has showcased 50 companies that pledged to workforce excellence through endorsement of the Workforce Advancement Pledge at its launch.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between WAF and the Singapore Workforce Development Agency (WDA) was signed and witnessed by Mr Teo at this Summit. This signifies the collaborative efforts from employers who are encouraged to develop the potential of their local workforce through lifelong learning and adoption of HR practices. This partnership will help the business community to develop effective HR strategies to attract, retain and groom the best talents.
“The tight labour market will continue to be a key concern for SMEs in the current economic climate. To compete successfully, SMEs will have to develop strong HR capabilities within the company as a way of attracting and retaining talent. This entails rethinking their HR strategies and upgrading their employees’ skills. We are pleased that the WAF is actively engaging the SME community to help SMEs strengthen their HR capabilities to build up a competitive workforce.”
- Mr Darshan Singh, Director of Human Capital Division at SPRING Singapore
"Human capital development is a key enabling factor to the success of the SkillsFuture movement; employers will need to embrace progressive HR practices, value and develop their employees, so as to help their businesses transform to be more competitive and future ready."
- Ms Julia Ng, Senior Director of the Enterprise Development Group at WDA
“The timely formation of WAF will greatly assist SMEs in trying to make use of HR as a strategic advantage. We hope to benefit from the knowledge-sharing of key workforce strategies and government funding support available as significant enablers of business growth.”
- Mr Jonathan Phoon, Executive Director of Freshening Industries Pte Ltd
“It is a great privilege to listen and learn from the open sharing by very seasoned and successful entrepreneurs in their respective fields. Joining the Federation is a way of me showing my 101% support to such a noble cause; providing the SME owners a platform to mingle, to exchange ideas in a smaller group, in an informal & more personal way. I was especially uplifted by the success story shared by Mr Neo Kah Kiat of Neo Group. Through his sharing, I had picked up many great ideas from him and hope to implement them for my company."
- Mr Lee Seng Shoy, Managing Director of Hong Guan (Tackle) Pte Ltd
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