Both lift and escalator technicians will see their wages increase under the Progressive Wage Model from 2022. They will also receive a mandatory annual bonus of at least one month of basic wages from January 2023.
This will ensure that a worker on the lowest job level will earn at least $2,075 a month in basic wages in 2023 – up 12 per cent or $225 from the previous wages for 2022.
By Jul 1, 2022, the basic monthly pay of an assistant specialist is set to rise to S$1,850 from the current level of S$1,480. It will increase to S$2,075 in 2023 and by July 2028, an assistant specialist is set to earn S$3,080.
At the top end, a principal specialist will draw a basic salary of S$4,150 by July 2028.
Attracting and retaining young talent for the sector
With the boost in wages for technicians, it is hoped that younger people may be attracted to this sector. Senior Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamad hopes the PWM will attract more graduates from the polytechnics and the Institute of Technical Education to join the industry. The mandatory bonus is also a means to retain talent for the sector.
Ensuring that the increasing demand for lift and escalator maintenance is met
In his Facebook post, NTUC deputy secretary-general Chee Hong Tat said,
“The demand for lifts and escalators is expected to increase as we develop our infrastructure and I’m glad that the industry is looking towards leveraging technology and training our workers to upgrade their skills sets to increase productivity. The latest Tripartite Cluster for Lift & Escalator (TCLE) Progressive Wage Model (PWM) recommendations for the industry will now include escalator maintenance workers, map out a six-year basic wage increase across all job levels, and introduce a mandatory PWM bonus for eligible workers.”
Indeed, the PWM seeks to plug a gap in the sector by meeting the increasing demands for lift and escalator maintenance. Currently, there are about 3000 technicians servicing 70,000 lifts and 7,000 escalators in Singapore. Of which, about half of the current local lift and escalator maintenance workforce are expected to retire within the next decade. Therefore, it is important to attract younger workers and overcome a potential labour shortage in future.