We operate in a fast-paced and ever-changing environment driven by the rapid advances of technology. As such, organisations and people will need to be adaptable and resilient in order to succeed in the modern economy.
As a statutory board, JTC’s mandate is much larger – it has to work closely with industrialists and enterprises to address their pressing needs and enable them to stay ahead of the curve. At the same time, the organisation takes the lead in leveraging innovation and technology across the whole value chain of infrastructure development to prepare Singapore for the future economy.
JTC Scholars Tan Yang En and Geoffrey Shankuan Lim give us insights into how it is like working in such a visionary organisation.
A Desire for Change
At JTC, you can trust that the work you do will make a difference. Its landmark projects span across Singapore and include Jurong Island, one-north, Seletar Aerospace Park and revolutionary next-generation estates like Jurong Innovation District and Punggol Digital District. JTC’s contribution to Singapore’s growth aligns perfectly with Yang En’s personal goals. He explains, “I have always wanted to be able to shape Singapore’s economic landscape in a tangible manner by helping industrialists directly. JTC takes on the whole value-chain of industrial infrastructure development – from masterplanning, development, project management, marketing and leasing to facilities management. This allows me to play an important role in supporting the growth of new industries and existing enterprises.” As for Geoffrey, he was initially drawn to JTC because of its reputation as a leading provider of industrial infrastructure solutions both locally and regionally. He tells us, “The nurturing ‘family-like’ and can-do culture made me feel that JTC could be a place that I would feel comfortable, yet challenged in. That was what tipped the scales and got me to take the first step towards joining the organisation.”
Tan Yang En
JTC Full Term Undergraduate Scholar
Econometrics and Mathematical Economics
(London School of Economics)
Masters in International and Development Economics (Yale University)
Assistant Manager, Startup Department
Today, Yang En works as a Cluster Officer in the Startup Department where he plays an active part in aiding the growth of home-grown startups. He elaborates, “This involves curating the tenant mix within JTC LaunchPad @ one-north – home to an ecosystem of budding entrepreneurs, fast-growing startups, and investors. Apart from maintaining relations with existing customers such as Shopback and Glints, I also actively market LaunchPad as Singapore’s ‘Silicon Valley’ to prospective startups, incubators, and venture capitalists. More than a mere landlord managing tenancies, my role in JTC requires me to be constantly plugged into the ecosystem, interacting with startup founders to gain deeper understanding of their businesses and learning about industry trends. I can play a substantial role in shaping policies, and even enhancing our facilities to suit their evolving needs. Knowing that every decision I make has the potential to impact the future of Singapore’s startup scene, I feel immensely proud to be contributing to this mission.”
On the other hand, we have Geoffrey who is part of the Corporate Planning Department. He explains, “I assist with setting, monitoring and reporting on corporate objectives. This enables us to break our overarching long-term mission down into manageable short-term projects based on medium-term needs. We then list and carry out the steps comprising them, and evaluate their execution and outcomes systematically.”
“I also contribute to JTC’s strategic planning processes by looking out for upcoming trends and technologies that we could harness to enhance and improve work processes. Besides identifying the trends, I work with my team and the relevant divisions across JTC to ensure that they can be operationalised into projects or policies. By doing so, I get the opportunity to be exposed to various aspects of the organisation’s operations.”
Geoffrey Shankuan Lim
JTC Full Term Undergraduate Scholar
Economics (University of Warwick) - Undergrad
Masters in Political Science (Columbia University)
Assistant Manager, Corporate Planning
An Ongoing Learning Experience
Yang En and Geoffrey’s roles in helping develop Singapore’s industrial growth is no easy task. They are kept on their toes with new and different challenges every day.
Yang En tells us that he has gained the skills necessary for his job today from his internships and learning on the job. He says, “I have been exposed to diverse job functions across the organisation over the course of two internships. My first internship was in the policy and research department which gave me a deeper understanding of policy formation and market research. The second one, which is the department I am currently at, gave me experience in a more operational and customer-facing role. In my current job, I am required to work with fellow Government agencies like MTI and SPRING to shape policies and influence decisions that will support the growth of the startup ecosystem. On a personal level, this has helped me to hone my communication skills.”
For Geoffrey, he believes his career has been enriched by the exposure to a wide span of professional functions and specialisations provided by JTC. He states, “As a statutory board, JTC allows you to work closely with both private and public sector partners. As a young officer, it is a great learning opportunity as you are exposed to a myriad of subject experts in their respective fields ranging from engineering, architecture, urban planning, statistics, facilities management, policy, marketing and more. Working here, I have frequently been given chances to pursue interest-based projects, participate in cross-disciplinary teams, and rotate between different portfolios. Additionally, there are multiple routes for advancement, including the leadership and specialised tracks like engineering, architecture, depending on one’s personal preference and abilities. JTC also offers opportunities for continuous learning such as personal development courses, overseas study trips and Study Awards that allow you to pursue further studies while working.”
Notes to Future Leaders
As our interview came to a close, Yang En and Geoffrey left a few words of wisdom for aspiring JTC scholars. Geoffrey advised, “JTC is the place for those who are looking for a challenging career and want to play a role in supporting the growth and transformation of Singapore’s economy.”
Yang En added, “With JTC’s open culture that welcomes different ideas and approaches, you are bound to be involved in unique ground-breaking projects on a national level. If you are looking for a job that stretches your creativity and pushes your boundaries, search no further. JTC is the place for you.”