National Trades Union Congress (NTUC)
Features | Organisation

A Heart for Workers

Driven by a passion to serve and positively impact workers’ lives, NTUC’s team of highly-motivated individuals are at the heart of a strong, responsible and caring Labour Movement.

As a fresh graduate, you’re probably familiar with the feeling of trepidation and anxiety as you contemplate your future career prospects. At NTUC, you’ll find opportunities to apply your skills and knowledge in a relevant field and contribute to the community. There’s nothing more fulfilling than working towards a greater cause, and NTUC offers you boundless opportunities to grow alongside the community you serve.

As an Industrial Relations Officer (IRO), you will look after the well-being of workers under your care. You will be their voice and strongest advocate as you negotiate with employers on their behalf and push for good employment practices. At the industry level, you will work with government agencies, employers and union leaders to find solutions to boost productivity and ensure the long-term viability of wage increases, bonuses and other benefits for workers.

As an Employability Coach, you will work with employers and partners in the assigned industry sectors to identify and develop solutions for better productivity, professional development and placement, which will lead to better jobs and wages for workers. You will be exposed to a good mix of industry engagement and programme creation, allowing you to enjoy both frontline exposure and a hand in strategic thinking.

And as a Senior Consultant in the various NTUC departments, you will play a vital role in NTUC’s outreach efforts and render assistance to different groups of workers in the working population. This includes vulnerable groups such as low-wage workers, migrant workers and mature workers, and you will have the opportunity to touch their lives and impact them positively. This allows you to hone your skills in a variety of areas, ranging from events planning and the development of new initiatives to the engagement of management partners and the workers.

NTUC's culture is characterised by resilience, innovation, inclusivity and enterprise, and we seek to impart these values to the people we serve.

At NTUC, we invest heavily in creating opportunities for our employees and building up the necessary competencies for them to do well. Our culture is characterised by resilience, innovation, inclusivity and enterprise, and we seek to impart these values to the people we serve.

Chandraseharan Ramesh
(Second from the left)

Designation: Senior Industrial Relations Officer

Studied: Bachelor of Social Science,
Singapore Management University

Nurafidah binte Abdul Rahman
(In the middle)

Designation: Senior Industrial Relations Officer

Studied: Bachelor of Arts (Merit),
National University of Singapore

A Strong Advocate for Workers

Senior IRO Nurafidah binte Abdul Rahman knows all about taking care of those under her charge. As a Senior IRO in the Education Services Union (ESU), her main portfolio is to handle the early childhood sector. She recalls, “I handled a case of an early childhood educator who had been unfairly terminated by her employer. Her employer claimed that she was constantly absent from work, but she was actually on official hospitalisation and medical leave for a back injury.

“It was a great blow to her when she received news that she had been terminated without notice. I assisted to file her case to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) for unfair termination. As she did not want a reinstatement, I negotiated with the company to allow her to tender her resignation instead so that it would not affect her future employment prospects. I also helped negotiate for the company to compensate her for the days that she was on official medical and hospitalisation leave. The company eventually agreed to allow her to resign and offered due compensation, and I felt a great sense of achievement in having secured a fair and just outcome for her!”

Amos Tan, Head, Industrial Relations, recalls how a concerned union member working in a non-unionised company approached NTUC for help when his company was undergoing a major restructuring exercise. He shares, “The restructuring was causing a lot of anxiety among workers. Through the recruitment of many new members, the union managed to garner strong ground support and was accorded direct recognition by the company. With the formation of the union, it was heartwarming to know that the workers’ interests are better safeguarded now!”

Chen Weiting (Far left)

Designation: Senior Consultant

Studied: Bachelor of Arts in Economics (Honours), Nanyang Technological University

Amos Tan Zhong Min (Second from the left)

Designation: Head, Industrial Relations

Studied: Bachelor of Engineering (Materials Engineering) (Honours), Nanyang Technological University

Clarissa Hor Mun San (Far right)

Designation: Senior Employability Coach

Studied: Bachelor of Business Management (Merit), Singapore Management University

Speaking Up for the Vulnerable

Senior Consultant Chen Weiting is familiar with the fulfilment that comes from redressing the grievances of vulnerable groups in the workforce. She recounts, “We helped a worker file a complaint to MOM and the CPF Board in a case of non-payment of CPF contributions by the company. We stood by the worker until she recovered her CPF, which has enabled her to be self-sufficient. Through this worker, we also helped to recover the CPF for 113 other workers. I am really glad for the opportunity to make such a significant difference in the lives of others!”

Weiting educates low-wage workers on their employment entitlements to empower them to stand up for themselves. She shares, “I also shared useful knowledge on the Employment Act and the CPF Act with this worker. It is heartening to know that she is spreading this knowledge to her friends and colleagues as well!”

Partnering with Companies

But NTUC is more than a representative of workers – it partners with companies to understand their manpower needs and works with them to find solutions that will benefit both employers and workers. For Senior Employability Coach Clarissa Hor, she recently had the chance to assist a company with applying for one of NTUC’s schemes. She tells us, “This company had a concept which would allow a group of rank-and-file workers to eliminate their night and weekend shifts and work only from 8am to 6pm on weekdays.

“As an officer who has been engaged in this particular industry for two years, I fully understand the manpower difficulties faced by the companies. Hence, when the company approached us for assistance on this particular project, I felt a sense of great excitement as I knew that this project would positively impact and benefit workers in significant ways.”

Robust Developmental Opportunities

NTUC employees possess a tireless conviction to better the lives of workers in Singapore. They are not alone in this mission, and NTUC makes every effort to provide them with the resources and opportunities to sharpen their skills and pick up new ones. Senior IRO Chandraseharan Ramesh has been at the receiving end of a plethora of enriching opportunities in his time at NTUC.

He enthuses, “As an IRO, you can expect to be rotated between Unions every few years and be exposed to different industries. I am now in my second posting and there is always something new to learn!

A vibrant and dynamic organisation with a heart for the workers it serves, NTUC is constantly on the lookout for talented and dedicated individuals who believe in its mission. Join us to make a difference!

“In my first year as an IRO, I also went through an Industrial Relations (IR) Mentoring Programme where experienced IR practitioners guide newcomers through full-day courses and networking sessions. And just last year, I returned to school to complete a Professional Diploma in Employment Relations via the Ong Teng Cheong Labour Leadership Institute, NTUC’s training institute for labour education in Singapore. All new IROs are enrolled into this course!”

Ramesh continues, smiling, “Apart from the IR training, there are a number of other courses for IROs to attend. We have control over our own development as the Human Resource Department also has a list of courses for us to choose from. Personally, I have attended courses on finance, events planning, time management and proposal writing.”

For these passionate individuals, every day at NTUC presents a new challenge and learning opportunity. A vibrant and dynamic organisation with a heart for the workers it serves, NTUC is constantly on the lookout for talented and dedicated individuals who believe in its mission. Join us to make a difference!