SMRT Corporation Ltd.

SMRT Introduces New Bus Captain Progressive Career Scheme

Press Release   •   Nov 07, 2013 09:51 +08

As part of SMRT Corporation’s on-going strategy to improve workforce health, SMRT today introduces a new progressive career scheme for all bus captains. The new scheme, called the ‘SMRT Bus Captain (BC) Scheme’, is developed as a result of on-going collaboration between SMRT’s management and the National Transport Workers’ Union.

This new scheme aims to arm SMRT’s Bus Captains with the training and skills to provide better service to commuters, increase productivity level, and deliver an enhanced travel experience focused on the service standards of Safety, Reliability, Care and Comfort.

The SMRT BC Scheme includes the restructuring of salary ranges, productivity and performance incentives; as well as a refreshed training plan targeted to enable career progression. This newly launched Scheme, which adopts the Labour Movement’s Progressive Wage Model[1] concept, will match training and job re-design for each Bus Captain – thus helping to ensure more targeted career progression plans and enhanced wages for the BCs.

Under this scheme, the average Singaporean SMRT Bus Captain can earn up to $3,500 a month after overtime and performance incentives, which consist of factors that reward Safety, Punctuality, and Customer Service.

Mr. Desmond Kuek, President and CEO of SMRT Corporation said, “The ability to retain talent and maintain our staff’s workforce health is key in ensuring that SMRT continues to deliver an excellent travel experience to commuters. The new BC scheme takes a progressive approach to training our bus captains beyond basic driving skills to include service and supervisory skills. In doing so, they can also progress in their careers to drive more complex routes, provide better service, and even move into supervisory and trainer/mentor roles. ”

The new career progression framework will underline a clear route of advancement, with opportunities to progress into supervisory positions such as Master Bus Captain, which includes group supervisor and instructor responsibilities. Promotion and upgrading criteria are set to each of the six bus captain (BC) ranks leading to Master BC. This is coupled with tailored training at each stage, and a structured remuneration and salary upgrade scheme in line with their increased skill levels and job responsibilities.

Mr Ong Chin Ang, Executive Secretary of National Transport Workers’ Union said, “Previously, competent drivers hit their career ceiling after three promotions when they become Chief Service Leaders. We also recognised that there is still room for current wages to move up. By adopting the Labour Movement’s Progressive Wage Model concept, the union worked together with SMRT management to relook and restructure the scheme to help bus captains achieve better career progression and wages, and ensure its sustainability. With the new model in place, traditional front-line roles are transformed and bus captains can look forward to training and advancement opportunities to supervisory positions with higher wages.”

Mr. Kuek added, “This new career scheme is a fine illustration of the strong relationship and constant dialogue between the company, employees and the union. With this scheme, which is in line with the Labour Movement’s Progressive Wage Model,  we hope a better trained, energised and engaged workforce will ultimately create a more reliable and service-oriented bus service that our passengers can enjoy.”

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[1] Launched by the Labour Movement in 2012, the Progressive Wage Model centres around helping workers earn better wages through skills upgrading and productivity. The four key components of the model are: salary progression; skills upgrading; career advancement; and productivity improvement.

SMRT Corporation Ltd (SMRT) is the leading multi-modal public transport operator in Singapore. SMRT serves millions of passengers daily by offering a safe, reliable and comprehensive transport network that consists of an extensive MRT and light rail system which connects seamlessly with its island-wide bus and taxi operations. SMRT also markets and leases the commercial and media spaces within its transport network, and offers engineering consultancy and project management as well as operations and maintenance services, locally and internationally.