6 August 2021
Singapore is a meritocratic society with a diverse workforce. Implementing a fair and merit-based recruitment practices is not only the right thing to do, but demonstrates professionalism on your part.
Employers are required to refer to the Tripartite Guidelines on Fair Employment Practices in promoting fair and responsible employment practices. The Fair Consideration Framework (FCF) watchlist was introduced in 2016 to identify employers suspected of having discriminatory hiring practices. Once identified by MOM, TAFEP will engage the employers to review their hiring practices. More information on the FCF and TripartiteGuidelines can be found in:
It can be very costly to employers if they do not follow fair recruitment practices. Employers found to have breached fair hiring requirements will be barred from hiring or renewing foreign workers for up to two years and may face prosecution if they make false declaration on fair consideration. So exactly what does it mean to be a fair employer? A fair employer provides equal opportunity for all, regardless of race, age, gender, religion, martial status, family responsibilities, or disability. Employers needs to be committed to ensure adequate and appropriate training are provided to all interviewers. Interviewers need to know what are the do’s and don’ts of interview and what pitfalls to avoid. Some quick tips for fair recruitment and selection practices include:
• Having a detailed workflow on recruitment to assist managers/supervisors to understand the process.
• A clear and detailed job description, including key responsibilities, core duties and corresponding competencies, experience, and qualifications. This will allow the employer to make informed hiring decision.
• Having a shorting listing selection criteria to identify suitable candidates for interviews.
• Ensure a merit-based and non-discriminatory job advertisement based on the job description of the role.
• For internal posting, post all job openings for all employees to see, instead of verbally telling an employee about an opening. This will ensure employees have an equal opportunity to apply for open positions.
• During interview, ask only job-related questions. Steer clear of personal, private and discriminatory questions.
• To prevent biasness and subjectivity, it is important to have at least 2 interviewers during the interview process.
• Having a consistent set of interview evaluation assessment to select the most suitable candidate for the role.
It’s never too late to start enacting change that will help ensure candidates are being treated both equally and fairly. Having an open, ongoing dialogue on how to improve company policies and how leadership can deliver said policies appropriately can help businesses stay committed to being a welcoming, equal, and fair place for everyone. It is of utmost importance that everyone is treated with respect and dignity which forms the basis of equal opportunity for all.