GMT : Tue, 06 Dec 2016, 02:51

The Hard Truths – from a true born & bred minority Singaporean Recruiter

I have been looking for time to write an article to TREmeritus and have finally been able to do so. Recently, an article on TREmeritus caught my attention regarding the effectiveness of JobsBank and subsequently a show on Channel 5 featuring Dr. Puthucherry about race in Singapore. I will discuss about the article on TREmeritus first.

The article was titled ‘How effective is the national Jobs Bank?’ and it was about Osman Bin Sulaiman, a former HR Practitioner, who said in a Facebook post that the portal was ineffective since “employers were able to include their emails [details]” and foreign candidates can directly email their profiles to employers.

I work in a recruitment company and I use JobsBank on a daily basis and I can tell you that is not the primary reason why the portal is so ineffective. I do get applications from foreigners but it is just one or two applications. I feel it is ineffective because the way the portal has been designed to search for candidates. The job portal is rigid and limited.

At the time of writing this article though, there have been changes to the job portal and things look much more improved though it still does not address the main issue. The main issue is that there is no way to monitor/track interviews conducted for Singaporean applicants, reasons for rejections and so on. I strongly encourage interviews to be conducted to companies on why they need to hire a foreigner for the job. This needs to be looked at seriously otherwise JobsBank will just continue to be a routine thing for employers/agencies to just post an advertisement and wait 14 days before they apply for the foreigner’s work pass.

I would like to relate race in the equation now. Getting EP is relatively easy especially if you are Malaysian Chinese in particular. There is no doubt there is a hidden agenda behind this and most of you should know why. There is an agenda to ensure that majority of Singapore population remains Chinese, whether the Chinese come from Malaysia, China or wherever without even giving any consideration for social and cultural impact (especially for China nationals).

For Malaysian Chinese on EP, it will be rather easy for them to get Singapore PR status within a couple of years. More importantly, I can tell you that most of the job openings (well-paying jobs) that I work for my clients; 70% of the jobs go to foreigners and I would say 90% if you include Singapore PRs. I do not consider PRs to be citizens of the country. They are foreigners in my opinion. Essentially, the worrying concern is that we are looking at just 10-20% of these good jobs going to true born Singaporeans. Now why do most of these jobs go to foreigners?

Most of the Hiring Managers themselves are foreigners/PRs. It becomes an issue of Indian nationals hiring Indian national/PR, Filipino nationals hiring Filipino/PR, China national hiring Chinese national/PR and so on. It turns into a ‘my kind can work with your kind’ or a skin colour thing. I’ve noticed a tremendous amount of noise being generated online about this issue.

There have been instances whereby my clients (huge MNCs) have specifically informed me that they want someone who is Chinese even though I may have qualified Singaporean minority candidates who speak fluent Mandarin and other dialects for the job. Is this not discrimination against Singaporean minorities?

Even in my case, I was employed by Singaporean Chinese but suffered racial abuse in my first job. Subsequently, I was hired by Indian nationals (PR) in my second and third jobs and hired by a Filipino national (PR) in my current job (after a job offer was made to a Filipino candidate but she accepted another offer). PM Lee says we need foreigners here to create jobs for Singaporeans. It seems like it has worked well for me in my case.

As a Recruiter, I don’t profile CVs to my client based on the colour of someone’s skin or the way they look. What is important for me is that the candidate must qualify for the job and must be Singaporean because I believe in ‘Singaporean First’ so don’t treat us minorities differently. Dr. Puthucherry, if you read this article, I’m not afraid to talk about race. I can be really blunt about it because I believe a lot of minorities like me have had enough of this already.

Thanks and Regards,

Singaporean Minority Fighter


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24 Responses to “The Hard Truths – from a true born & bred minority Singaporean Recruiter”

  • Hhh:

    You write so long winded to tell us you love working under FT and FT creates jobs for Sinkies is true?

    From what you said, We locals are going to be managed by foreigners and you are happy.

    You want to be meritocratic but the whole country hires 90% foreigners.

    You are supposed to hire locals and save Sinkies from extinct never mind Chinese Indian Malay etc.

    Don’t be a brainwashed bodo to believe in that bs FT evil scheme!

    GD Star Rating

    “Educated people in 21st century cannot speak English, an international language?”:

    This is one of the biggest issues confronting this multi-racial country. There is absolutely NO cause or excuse for all Singaporeans, whatever race, NOT to speak or understand English. The language of instruction in the schools has been English for a long, long time now. I can understand the older PGP crowd for not being able to speak English (they never had that chance to pick up the language in schools). But the majority of Chinese Singaporeans? Where have you been living all this time? Whom have been they doing business or associating with?

    Unless, unless, unless Chinese-speaking households have been intentionally sabotaging the English language under some misguided belief that (a) they will lose their cultural identity if they give way to English (a myth propagated by Harry himself) (b) China will be so dominant say around this period that the whole world – 700 million Western countries, 300 million South Americans, 120 million Russians, 120 million Japanese, 1.2 billion Indians, 100 Pakistanis, 80 million Iranians, and so on – will be speaking Chinese.

    Not all. English is still THE international language and will be around for a long time. No progress is possible if you can’t speak or write in the language. This is NOT an anti-Mandarin statement. This is being practical and progressive, and being smart. And please don’t start all this nonsense about being banana-skinned or having a colonial hangup. I am as Asian as I have been since I was born.

    GD Star Rating
  • N.Jungne:

    Aiyoh Wayang lah, notice nowadays, the schools even kindergartens are places where propaganda and all the what-nots are issued. One just have to imagine, how to expect students from kindergartens to secondary schools questioning an MP or Minister? Not in their interest at all, give them chocolates or ice-screams maybe.

    GD Star Rating
  • Never a PAP voter:

    Sad to say we need laws to prevent employment based on racial lines, be it only employing India Indians, Pinoy, PRC, Mysia PR, etc, etc.

    I am not saying people are racist. But in tight situation where everyone is fighting for a job across the world, this concept of meri-tok-cock-cracy need to have some laws to proof of it. Even it means to slight the weigh to favor Singaporean first. PAP was smart enough to fool everyone about this meri-tok-cock-cracy for 50 years and more, but have no proof to say if it works and ensure it is followed. Truthfully thinking, if we have true meri-tok-cock-cracy at work, then they won’t build Indian Villages, Pinoy Villages, PRC Villages, Mysia Chinese Villages, appearing across many departments in Singapore.

    We need laws that educated Singaporeans come first. With some quota system, to take Singaporean first. Then quota to take Singaporean races. Lastly to take quota based on age. If all failed, then quota based on PR and Foreigners. No one in PAP will do this. Even if WP do this, they don’t have deep knowledge on how the system work and have no access to free information on how to go about doing this. So what we have left is 70% voters to fix things. But if they are well employed, they won’t shake the ground to change things that favor their own.

    GD Star Rating
  • Jobs foreigners; NS for sinkie:

    Singapore belongs to everyone including foreigners ..PeeM
    NS is a privilege for sinkies ..Dr KNN

    No where else in developed countries or even 3rd world countries do you find such IRRESPONSIBLE chenghu opening doors for the whole world to come here seeking jobs.

    A joke that QS world ranked No. 12 NUS (best in Asia, btw) or NTU (ranked 13th QS) graduates bypassed for job and given to foreigner with degree not even ranked top 100 or top 500.

    Yet, 70% of citizens voted for such chenghu .. astounding!!!!!!!

    GD Star Rating
  • Birds of a feather:

    The foreigners are in another country, so hiring their own kind makes the workplace not foreign to them. Fear of the unknown and of a strange land propels them to do this. Of course, it is perfectly natural to hire your own friends, people you are familiar with etc.

    I Sporean leh, all the companies I have worked for had staff of all races. I never thought that race was ever an issue. Until the local vs foreign divide came along.

    GD Star Rating
  • why liddat one:

    Dear Emperor LHL,

    Why oh why are jobs given to 3rd world foreigners when our PMETs cannot get a job? Why, oh why, Emperor Lee must you treat us like 3rd class citizens?

    Emperor Lee, why are you not protecting our jobs? Aren’t you aware that all other countries in the world, first world or third world, jealously guard the well-being of their citizens and protect their rice bowls?

    Your royal Higness, we peasants are suffering such injustices when we go for job interview and confronted with insults such as “why must I give you the job when I can employ a foreigner at lower cost?”

    GD Star Rating
  • hidden agenda:

    the article is full of holes. it come across as someone stirring sinkies to fight among themselves.

    GD Star Rating
  • Put it this way:

    If Singapore chinese population is reduced substantially, would the economy be affected. The work ethnic of Chinese is much desired as they are really very hard working and are doers.

    In Asia, and I suppose the entire world, the Chinese, Japanese and Korean are probably the most hard working people. Incidentally, they have highest IQ in the world. If these people can speak English and our government have massive investments in these regions, I ok for opening job malarket to them in exchange for investment incentives provided Singaporean first policy is in place.

    I remember in the 90s, Singapore productivity was top in the world thanks to Malaysian, Thai (construction) and PRC. However, in recent years we are suffering productivity problem year and year (especially in construction, IT and finance/banking as pointed by department of statistics few years ago) as the foreign workers lanscape has changed substantially over the past 10 years.

    Singapore actually treating minorities much better than other countries such as Malaysia and India.

    I am not trying to be racist but stating facts here.

    GD Star Rating
  • Knn:

    Jiffy u wanted Dr puki to contact you, why are you not using your real name if you believe that what you wrote can be defended?

    GD Star Rating
  • Rats can't vomit:

    If a politician found he had cannibals among his constituents, he would promise them missionaries for dinner. – H. L. Mencken

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  • One side of the Story:

    Mainstream media can’t be trusted with their one side of the story.
    All rosy pictures only, deserved to be closed down.

    GD Star Rating
  • SinkiesAreBrainless:

    Unfortunately the truth is that the tiny city country like Singapore does not have much of practicing diversity in hiring.

    Even among the local Chinese, there is much discrimination hiring based on paper qualifications (local universities first) and background (scholars, army officers, etc).

    GD Star Rating
  • kf:

    Great article. I learnt a lot from the writer.

    GD Star Rating
  • opposition dude:

    This is how the Jobs Portal works, we are very familiar with it because it’s the same pattern every single time with regards to policies and everything else.

    After PAP loses more seats is when they will “tweak” the Portal. For example, they could increase the duration for the jobs from 2 to 3 weeks. Or they could “tweak” some small rule, for example, that aliens who earn above 15k (from 12k now) are to be exempted. Or perhaps organisations with 50 people (from 25 now) are exempted from the Portal.

    This is PAP people, 2011 lose a GRC faster cut pay. Not much lah as we know they are still way overpaid but “tweak” is tweak mah.

    Same goes for the PGP. They conveniently forgot that the number of pioneers gets fewer as time goes on so you know they won’t be spending that much money on the pioneers anyway. And furthermore there is the rule on pioneers born before 1949 so this group will only shrink.

    GD Star Rating
  • RDB:

    Dr. Puthucherry is under the PEE AND POO umbrella. Otherwise he would have been PUTUS long ago liao!

    GD Star Rating
  • Stop the globalization BS:

    I salute the writer for this article. We need to accumulate all these articles and pass it to every opposition party to distribute in the 4 languages of our forefathers to rally for an end to PAP dominance. PAP should become the minority in the next elections to know how it feels to become the minority.

    GD Star Rating
  • Trump three million salary:

    Why we hired foreign workers
    To cut cost lah

    Why we introduce technology
    Used technology to cut down foreign workers, to cut cost lah

    Everyone want to cut corners

    Singapore is a developed country with 0.6% GDP
    Singapore cost of living is going up, up, up again
    We call this normal, we had a name for it, inflation, hyper inflation

    The Experts said:”the external environment the manufacturing is WEAK
    Well, Singapore “Industrialize India” with upgrading of skills,
    The external market will be EVEN WEAKER, as INDIA now join in the party
    Opps Singapore did it again
    What will the India Singapore Joint. Industrial Park called?

    The Experts should know OPEC cannot control the supply of oil, increase the oil prices, because IRAN had join the party.
    Now that INDIA is coming to be the Next World Factory, there will be a huge flood of cheap products

    I met this couple at Dubai,
    The husband cannot stop attack Forigen Talents

    But can our Companies suvive without Foriegn Talents
    Singapore had HIGH COST OF LIVING, we need to COMPETE with regionally & globally
    Our company had to cut corners to do that, otherwise we cannot compete

    Everything else remain EQUAL
    But others country is very cost competitive

    Without Foreigner Talents = Cheap Labor, how to compete, how to survive?
    Please do your Math

    One Malay Delivery Driver
    1) Salary = 1,800
    2) Lorry = 1,600 vehicle loan monthly
    3) Petrol = 700 per month
    4) Season parking, Monlthy medical check up = 200

    Every month you need to find SGD 4,000 per month to upkeep a delivery guy

    We had not mention by 10 years you need to find 70,000 COE
    After 7 years that lorry start to cough, it cost min 1,000 to repair

    1 years you need to find 70,000 to enjoy a delivery driver
    You need to put aside 10K for COE
    Your expenses is 80,000 a year for a driver to send goods from point A to point B

    Today upmark is less than 25%

    I met many many Towkays

    Trust me, next year……PAP will had thousands of laid off workers from SME.
    All the Towkay is having High Cost Of Doing Business

    Towkays are seriously consider RELOCATING TO THAILAND
    What choice had you got
    Better wave Thailand Flag

    GD Star Rating
  • Change We Must:

    I went to interview at an Indian company. They did not hire me. So is it a discrimination?

    GD Star Rating
  • Sexy Ministar Of Sex:

    The writer, Singaporean Minority Fighter seems to be thanking the foreigners for hiring him while (sort of) laughing at the local majority as many sg Chinese now face job discriminated like he once had.

    C’mon, if minority races do not share, how is the majority to know the minority’s plight and misfortunes especially when they’re not the employers or hirers?

    We should all thank the social media. If not for the internet, we’d ALL, whether minority or majority, have to suffer in silence. I remember there’re incidents when minority race sgreans who faced job discrimination posted on their Facebook and the next moments, fellow citizens ( many were Chinese ) spoke up for them which resulted in the employers apologizing.

    This is our country. This is SG. Jobs in sg should be given to SINGAPOREANS FIRST regardless of race, language or religion.

    If any government does not take care of its citizens first, it is the first sign that it’s not a caring and good government at all. People should thus not remain stupid. For the sake of our future generations, everyone should unite and vote them out as soon as our next chance comes.

    GD Star Rating
  • Neo:


    GD Star Rating
  • worms crawling out of the can?:

    I suspect the writer have an atitude problem. The problematic type of employee that we sometimes see in the workplace. If you read between the lines, the writer also have a problem in keeping down a job. He is a “job hopper”.This could likely be due to his attitude problem or he simply have a performance issue ie he cannot deliver the goods. He seems to have a problem with people, someone who does not want to play ball. The misguided character who think he is a fighter and have a mind of his own.

    Even though he claimed was hired by some indian pr in his 2nd and 3rd he left. What does that tell you?

    In his 4th job he was second choice because the pinoy who was selected took up another job offer. Sure we all know that there are foreigners who will put the locals as reserves when it comes to the job selection process but the writer’s qualification are probably only second choice not good enough.

    Recently in Singapore we see a lot of Sporeans who will quote the PAP or say they are some grassroots leaders or members, affiliated to the PAP to argue their point. Quoting Dr Putu or PAP does not mean the chap is right in his claim about been discrimated.

    Sporeans know that the PAP will never acknowledge that it was a mistake to have use the race card in their effort to stay in power. Isnt this like playing with fire. Recently we see people like the writer who cannot see that they are the cause of their own problem are influenced by the PAP to wave the race card and simply put the blame on the Singaporean chinese.

    GD Star Rating
  • Discrimination?:

    If you go indian (local and foreign) hiring manager, what are the chances for a Singaporean chinese candidate? Likewise, if the hiring manager is Singaporean chinese and candidate is Singaporean indian. You will be surprised the percentage of chances is higher when hiring manager is singaporean chinese.

    GD Star Rating
  • Sesame Street:

    read this chap’s article few times before on TRE…same old same old
    blabbering about discrimination of minorities in SIN.
    to set record straight,there are discrimination in SIN,just like everywhere in the world,just a matter of how bad or serious,unavoidable.
    Majority of citizen are Chinese,minorities are bound to feel sidelined or discriminated.

    *Didn’t get job after job interview…wa,me discriminated
    *Didn’t get into good school…wa,me discrminated
    *Didn’t get good pay job…wa me discriminated
    and the list goes on…

    for a moment,why not turnaround and take a look at yourself?
    there are many very successful minorities,what are their attributes?
    In my opinion,people who only know how to KPKB (Rant) have “Blame the whole world but yourself” mentality.

    i joined NPCC in sec sch and Chinese were the minorities,I also suffered discrimination but I don’t make a hooha out of it because I know as minority back then,its unavoidable.

    GD Star Rating

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