Ideal for HR managers to be Singaporean

WHILE foreign talent can bring in new ideas and skills and keep our economy competitive, certain jobs should be within the domain of Singaporeans (“MPs want more protection, support for local PMEs”; Tuesday).

Human resource managers, for instance, should preferably be Singaporean. Besides being more conversant with local labour laws and industrial relations, Singaporean HR managers can relate better to our multiracial workforce.

I recall an expatriate HR manager getting embroiled in an industrial dispute when he dismissed a worker for being late for work twice, only to reinstate the worker after the union intervened.

In his home country, hire-and-fire methods were prevalent and effective, and it was common for employees to be sacked even for minor shortcomings.

Seemingly, this expatriate failed to realise that the work culture in Singapore is different.

Hence, in certain aspects of management, it pays to engage local executives and managers.

Organisations that want to remain viable in the current business environment should hire Singaporeans instead of foreigners when everything else is equal.

Jeffrey Law Lee Beng

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