Tuesday 20 October 2015

More than 70 mature job seekers on board Private Provider Placement Programme so far

This comes just three weeks after the scheme, a collaboration between the Workforce Development Agency and private search and placement firms - was launched.
By Imelda Saad, Channel NewsAsia, 17 Oct 2015

Out of work, mature Professionals, Managers and Executives (PMEs) have more avenues for help under a new programme which kicked off on Oct 1. In just under three weeks, more than 70 are being helped under the Private Provider Placement Programme, a collaboration between the Workforce Development Agency (WDA) and private search and placement firms.

For a start, two private companies have come on board the scheme. One of them is Meyer Consulting, a recruitment firm that is changing the way it operates, due to the scheme. The firm now offers career coaching services to mature PMEs.

"Usually in a recruitment field, we try to find the best fit candidates for our clients, without looking at the PME profile," said Ms Angela Kuek, director of The Meyer Consulting Group. "So this is coming from the PME angle and assisting them to increase their chances of landing a role.

Ms Kuek added: "The enhanced service is definitely on career guidance, coaching and advisory because PMEs, some of them do lack an understanding of their own career positioning, their strengths and skills sets and what employers are looking for in a candidate."

Under the new programme, private placement firms are roped in to offer structured assistance to older PMEs who face difficulties finding a job. The target group is Singaporean PMEs, who are above the age of 40 and out of work for at least six months.

The other company on the programme is Asia Gold Bell Group, an employability training provider, which said the scheme has helped to consolidate the services it offers.

Job seekers go through four stages of help. First, consultation, which covers things like career history and qualifications. Stage two is coaching, to determine career options and develop an action plan to reach their target. Stage three, the placement stage, is when job opportunities are identified and candidates are prepared for an interview. The final stage is retention support.

"A lot of them may have different issues that they may face and we provide the avenue for them to sound out some of those issues," said Mr Adrian Ang, CEO of Asia Gold Bell Group.

"If there is a need, because we are the one who had placed them in the company, we actually work with the companies to see how we can solve some of these issues that they may be facing in order to sustain the retention of these candidates," he added.

Since the programme is fully supported by the WDA, the service is free for mature job seekers. Those interested can either approach the two private companies on board the programme or the five WDA Career Centres located across the island.

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