Singapore shifts to more flexible way of working amid COVID-19

Singapore announced on Wednesday (Mar 24) a shift towards a more “flexible and hybrid” way of working. More employees will be permitted to return to the workplace from Apr 5. Split team arrangements are no longer mandatory.
There will also be no limit on the proportion of an employee’s working time that can be spent at the workplace.

Here are the updated requirements for safe management measures at the workplace issued by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM):

1. STAGGERED START TIMES, FLEXIBLE WORK HOURS

Employers must ensure staggered start times to ensure that staff members are dispersed. They are to reduce possible congregation of personnel at office entrances or lobbies, as well as public transport.

2. WORKING FROM HOME STILL ENCOURAGED

Employers must ensure that no more than 75% of employees - up from 50% currently - who are able to work from home are at the workplace at any point in time. As far as possible, companies should continue to conduct virtual meetings

3. MAINTAIN “WORK-LIFE HARMONY”

While continuing to meet business needs, work from home measures should enable employees to maintain "work-life harmony".

4. SPECIAL ATTENTION FOR VULNERABLE EMPLOYEES

Special attention should be paid to vulnerable employees, such as those aged 60 and above, and patients who are immunocompromised or have concurrent medical conditions.

5. UP TO 50 PEOPLE AT WORK EVENTS

Work-related events must adhere to a 50-person limit to minimise the risk of exposure to COVID-19 infection. Meals should not be the main feature of the event.

6. SOCIAL GATHERINGS REMAIN LIMITED TO 8

While up to 50 people are allowed at work-related events, an eight-person party is the limit, as per prevailing guidelines.

7. EMPLOYERS TO ENSURE SUFFICIENT FACE MASKS, DISINFECTANTS

Employer must ensure it has enough masks for all employees and provide cleaning agents such as liquid soap and toilet paper, as well as hand sanitisers, sprays, paper towels or wipes.