Sales executives of Borneo Motors, who have chosen to remain anonymous reported that the company was planning to cut commissions by $100 to $350 per car from last month. According to the sales executives, their monthly income could have fallen by $2,000.
Union Intervened To Help
They are glad that there is still light at the end of the tunnel as their Union, Singapore Manual & Mercantile Workers’ Union (SMMWU) had intervened.
SMMWU submitted a request to Ministry of Manpower (MOM) to request for conciliation involving its sales consultant members and Borneo Motors (Singapore) Pte Ltd over the proposed cut in commission and an increase in sales quota.
MOM spokesman said that “the conciliation process is ongoing. Both Union and Borneo Motors’ management are engaging actively in the conciliation process. Progress has been made on some issues but more work needs to be done on remaining issues where parties’ positions differ.“
Jasmmine Wong, managing director of Borneo Motors, said, “We are in the midst of discussions which we have every two years. We have up to the end of the year to reach a conclusion. Nothing has been decided.” Several veterans have been laid off two years ago and a new management team has taken over, which Ms Wong is part of.
She mentioned that the sales staff wanted “higher commissions and lower targets”, but she does not believe that is practical in a market that is expected to decline over the next two years due to the decrease in certificate of entitlement (COE) quotas.
Nissan agent, Tan Chong Motor has decided to close its Bukit Timah showroom due to a dip in number of walk-in customers on May 6, Monday. On the other hand, Ms Wong commented that her priority is to keep jobs. She further explained that the company is operating on a system to generate leads for its sales staff, and a car delivery division has been added to relieve sales staff from non-sales duties.
From the point of view of a sales veteran, he thought the cut in commissions would only be acceptable if the company is losing money. This is not the case, yet the sales staff were the only ones being targeted and that is unjust. Borneo is ranked as one of the top profit generators under the UK-listed Inchcape. It has also earned Toyota’s Triple Crown award for industry-leading sales in passenger vehicle, commercial vehicle and taxi sales.
This is the first time in history that Borneo has introduced a sales commission cut, and I guess it is unnecessary to say their sales staff are not happy about this. But not to worry, for now they can rest assured that with the Union intervention, the company will not be able to implement any cut in commission before the year ends and hope that the Union would be able to fight successfully for a smaller commission cut, as well as prevent possible job losses in the weakening car market.