Workers In Singapore Prioritize Four-Day Workweeks Over Financial Benefits

DigitalCFO Newsroom | 29 June 2022

Reeracoen Singapore found that local workers prioritize flexible and positive work cultures over increased salaries and bonuses when it comes to leaving or staying at a job.

As the UK starts its pilot for four-day work weeks, a recent survey by Reeracoen found that three-quarters of respondents wished for a four-day workweek of 10 hours daily as a preferred mode for flexibility.

As a top recruitment firm dealing first-hand with companies and jobseekers, Reeracoen recognizes this paradigm shift of attitudes in the global and local labor markets, noting how increasingly difficult it is for companies to attract and retain talent.

An overwhelming majority of employees hope that flexible hours and remote and hybrid work stays. However, a global Microsoft study this year found that 50% of leaders want their staff back in the office. Reeracoen’s Regional General Manager, Mr. Kosuke Soejima, said: “Our surveys and recent hiring trends show us that offering an attractive salary or title is no longer enough to attract or retain employees, especially amidst the backdrop of the “Great Resignation” worldwide.”

Reeracoen also found that jobseekers here echo these trends. Leading by example, the company revisited its working model and found that the local team adapted quickly. Hiring part or full-timers and offering remote, hybrid, and flexible working options for staff has been the norm since the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Its new model empowered existing staff work to juggle work, and personal commitments as Reeracoen found that staff increasingly want to be trusted to manage their days and time. “Our results show that flexible working hours are a win-win solution for both employers and employees,” says Reeracoen’s Regional General Manager, Mr. Kosuke Soejima, “We were able to hire those who have been stay-at-home mums for many years or parents who require flexible working arrangements. These seasoned professionals gave up their career because they felt they had to choose between work and family.”

“The Flexi hours have empowered me to manage my family and work,” says Ms. Chen Weilian, a full-time Career Adviser with Reeracoen. “It reduces the stress and guilt often associated with preceding time spent with my children for work,” says Ms. Weilian, “and grants me the autonomy from the rigid work in office model.” 

“Offering workers flexible working arrangements may be a good acquisition and retention strategy for companies in this global war for talent,” added Reeracoen’s Group CEO, Mr. Kenji Naito. “By shaping our Singapore business model around the needs of our staff, we were able to hire permanent part-time with specialized skills, without negatively impacting our operating costs.”

Despite the island nation’s shift back to pre-pandemic working arrangements, Reeracoen Singapore plans to continue its current work arrangements in the interest of work-life harmony for all staff.