Dear The Real Singapore,

I want to share with you and your readers life as a Screening Officer with Certis Cisco Aviation Security Pte Ltd in Changi Airport Terminal 3.

For a reputable company which proudly boasts about its good work ethics, its 3M Model (Man, Method, Machine) and good working conditions for its employees. It is quite hypocritical.

A standard over view for a full time Screening Officer:

  • Morning shift 10am – 10 pm (2 days)
  • Night Shift 10pm – 10 am (2 days)
  • One and a half days off.
  • Basic salary $992.00 per month
  • General Screener Skill Allowance $100
  • $5,000.00 joining bonus fully paid after 2 years. Bonus paid in instalments every 6 months
  • Monthly Performance Incentive $185.00
  • QRI $300.00 (Paid $150.00 every 3 months)

Sound pretty alluring and good. In reality we are treated and paid like robots.

  • 8 – 9 flights are assigned per shift. Where no proper breaks are given to eat a meal. Yet the breaks are cut from the pay.
  • A regular team should consist of 5 people. 1 X-ray Operator male or female, 2 male & 2 female general screeners. However most teams only consist of 1 male screener which is required to go check over 1000 passengers.
  • Regular Intrusion exercises are conducted by the Airport police. Failure of any procedure is issued with a cut in your pay and a Letter of Warning or a Letter of Advice. This can result in redoing the course. This can take up to 2 weeks or a month in waiting. This results in salary shortage every month for many.
  • Even if annual leave is applied through the correct procedures. You can still be marked as AWOL (absent without leave). This results in your pay being deducted at no fault of the employee.
  • Favouritism is extremely common. If you are in a relationship with a PIER Supervisor or are good friends, you are given special treatment and avoid being penalised for any misconduct unlike the other employees who are constantly victimised and blamed for.
  • Officer Commanding (OC) and Senior Supervisors (SS) will spend their time smoking and socialising together  and often report late to work yet clocking in the same time as regular employees. Yet if an employee is 10mins late their pay is deducted.
  • For night shift workers proper resting areas are not provided resulting in employees bringing their own mats and sleeping on the floor in the office. There can be up to over 50 employees sleeping in 1 office.  Most times due to too many flights there is no rest period given to employees.
  • Incident reports are given out like napkins for any ridiculous reasons. To the point if an employee does not fold their hands while standing.  This goes against their name in their file which affects their pay.
  • Due to not earning enough pay, employees resort to doing 12 hours of overnight overtime during their 2nd morning shift. This is against the rules and regulations of MOM. The company allows them to continue doing it regardless.

All the constant pressure of over the top regulations and procedures and lack of breaks to eat and sleep and constant pay being cut result in many employees physical and mental health to suffer. Many employees have been hospitalised due to strokes while on duty. Yet management choose to do nothing about it, regardless of employees voicing their opinions and concerns. 

How are employees meant to work at their best when they are treated at the worst like robots.

How are passengers meant to feel safe and protected when the staffs checking them are mentally and physically drained due to the working conditions. Do we need to wait for something drastic to happen for things to change?


Anonymous Changi Airport Screening Officer


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