Women are a leading force in today’s business landscape. Yet while women represent over half the global workforce, less than a third (32%) of leadership positions are held by women.  

Women are also underrepresented in high-growth sectors like technology, information, and media. This creates a double whammy, where women are both less likely to be in these sectors and may face a skills gap if they try to enter.

The People Collective (TPC)—a Slack community for HR professionals across Southeast Asia and beyond—recently hosted an in-person workshop in celebration of International Women’s Day for People leaders to discuss and learn strategies for empowering women to lead in Singapore (and across the region). Inspired by the insightful discussions and drawing on the experiences of our community, this blog explores actionable tips for women and organizations to address skills gaps and promote growth.

Understanding the Skills Gap: Beyond Metrics

skills gap analysis

Bridging the skills gap for female talent requires a deeper understanding of their needs and aspirations. A deeper skills gap analysis is needed to deliver programs and strategies that will have a lasting impact on your organization. Here’s why a one-size-fits-all approach won’t work:

Beyond Promotion Paths

Recognizing the various definitions of success and professional development is crucial for promoting growth within your organization.  Panelist Wei Ching Ong, Founder of SELF, encourages us to question, “is the professional track, which is often the manager track, really what women want?”  

This question highlights a potential disconnect between traditional promotion paths focused on management and the aspirations of some women. Understanding these aspirations through strategies such as self-identification surveys (more on this later) is crucial. These surveys can help reveal whether women seek leadership roles, prefer individual contributor tracks, or have specific skill sets they want to develop.

Questioning the Numbers

Metrics like promotion rates are important, but they don’t tell the whole story when it comes to addressing the skills gap. Wei Ching further emphasized the need to “question the metrics.”  Gathering qualitative information through focus groups or open-ended survey questions can provide valuable insights into the lived experiences of women in the workplace. This can help uncover the reasons behind the skills gaps we see in the data.

By looking beyond surface-level data and understanding the aspirations and challenges women face, organizations can design targeted skills development programs that empower them to reach their full potential.

Women Face Different Skill Development Opportunities

A McKinsey report highlights that women are less likely than men to participate in formal training and development programs, putting them at a disadvantage when it comes to acquiring new skills. This draws an emphasis on understanding the needs, learning styles, and unique challenges of your workforce. By tapping into motivational factors, goals, and needs of your employees, you can better target skills gap analysis.

Strategies to Bridge the Skills Gap

Bridging the skills gap within your organization will require a more tailored approach than simply rolling out learning and development (L&D) benefits. The TPC community dove into specific strategies HR leaders and organizations can take to approach addressing the skills gap. Here, we take a look at various strategies from both the individual and organizational level.

For Women

Organizations and leaders certainly have a responsibility and role to play in addressing the skills gap within their teams, but women also have a stake in the game. It’s essential to have the buy-in and participation of employees to help address and close skills gaps.

Self-awareness and Aspiration Identification

Panelist VJ Posadas, Director of Corporate Partnerships Executive Education at INSEAD aptly pointed out, “The first part of the framework is really understanding oneself and whether you’re a woman or a man, it’s always who am I? Who do I want to be? Do I really want to aspire to be a CEO or a CFO, or am I happy to be an individual contributor providing value to my organization?” 

Identifying individual career goals provides direction to skills gap analysis. Often, this can be supported on the managerial level, with regular 1-on-1 check-ins, routine performance reviews, and goal setting exercises to help guide employees to best understand their goals and key drivers.

Continuous Learning and Development

To bridge the skills gap, it’s crucial for employees to become active participants in their own growth journey. This can be done by researching in-demand skills for their industry and leadership role, exploring online courses, workshops, or certifications offered by professional organizations, and reaching out to managers for additional resources.

Taking the initiative to learn new skills demonstrates an impressive level of commitment and ambition, and helps get the training and resources needed to close skills gaps. 

Further, embracing challenging assignments as opportunities to showcase capabilities, and seeking mentorship and guidance from experienced professionals are great ways for women to advocate for their own continuous development. 

Build a Support Network

The career development path can be lonely without support. Our community agreed that seeking out support from peers and mentors is essential to growth and development. Whether it’s prompting discussions with friends, colleagues, or superiors, taking the time to ponder the challenges, desires, and strategies to skills gap analysis can help answer a lot of unknowns. 

The People Collective offers a supportive network of like-minded individuals, as well as thoughtful events and workshops to help further skills development. 

For Organizations

Leadership has an obligation to their talent to invest in their growth, both because it’s the right thing to do, and also because it helps promote employee engagement, retention, and productivity. The panelists and audience discussed the various ways in which organizations can address skills gap from a strategic level.

Tailored Skills Development Programs

Learning and development is a major factor in career growth and performance coaching, but not all skills development programs are created equal. When considering strategies to specifically champion women leaders, consider skills areas that have historically been pain points. For example, effective communication is essential for leadership success, and is often regarded with double standards for women and men. 

“Women leaders often downplay their accomplishments or hesitate to speak up in meetings. Developing strong communication skills is essential to project confidence and inspire your team.”

Kathy Teoh, Global Strategic DEI & Belonging Director at Arcadis

From strengthening communication and advocacy skills to addressing skill gaps in historically male-dominated industries such as programming and engineering, our panel discussions highlighted the importance of tailored skills development programs that equip women leaders with the confidence and skills to navigate challenging situations and inspire their teams. 

This also means understanding the learning styles that best suit your team. While some employees may benefit from group seminars or in-person workshops, others may best learn from digital training courses or one-on-one mentoring sessions.

Value Individual Contributor Paths

Wei Ching stressed the importance of honoring individual contributors as well as those that want to join the leadership track. “Some employees actually prefer an individual contributor track and that’s fine. But has the organization been designed to support growth as an individual contributor? I think more often than not you hear a narrative that you have to be a manager to show that you are making progress. But that doesn’t necessarily have to be true.” 

Career paths that support learning outside of management roles allow growth across the board, and help address the skills gap beyond leadership skills. Ensure your organization is nurturing all employees, wherever they are and whatever their individual goals may be. 

Data-Driven Decision Making

Like any workplace management decision, gathering data helps leadership make informed decisions that will better serve their workforce. Gather both quantitative and qualitative data on the demographics, goals, skills gap, and current abilities of your organization to best develop targeted programs to support employees.

Using this data to understand the reasons behind a skills gap can unlock a better understanding of where L&D efforts should be focused. Is it that there aren’t enough opportunities for growth? Your policies don’t support the needs of your employees? Engagement is low? 

When we apply data to our decisions, we reduce the opportunity for misalignment, bias, and assumptions that can undermine our efforts to promote a more equitable environment.

Mentorship and Sponsorship Programs

Finally, consider leveraging the skills and experiences of leaders within your organization. Mentorship is valuable, but sponsorship takes championing women a step further. Mentorship focuses on guidance and advice, whereas sponsorship is about advocacy and opportunity. A sponsor is someone who can use their influence to promote you and your work to others. They can recommend you for opportunities, introduce you to important people, and speak on your behalf.

As panelist VJ Posadas stressed, “Women are over-mentored but under-sponsored. One way we can use our male privilege for allyship to make women’s work more visible is by getting men involved in being their sponsors.” 

Of course, women leaders can and should continue to be coached and mentored by fellow women as their experiences are often relatable. Encouraging sponsorship programs can connect women with influential advocates who can champion their advancement.

Join The People Collective

skills gap

HR professionals are setting the standard for championing women, and doing the hard work of navigating the way to successful advancement. At the People Collective, we’re committed to bringing like-minded and skilled HR leaders together to share resources, spark important conversations, and promote collective action to better the world of work. These are just some of the insights shared during a recent People Collective event.

If you haven’t already, join our vibrant community of HR leaders that make up our Slack community

Follow us on LinkedIn to stay up to date on the latest community gatherings and discussions.

As Singapore business continues to gain the spotlight on the worldstage, more opportunities for career development are making their way into the city-state. HR leaders are thinking about how to best support their employees while prioritizing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) efforts within their organization. 

The People Collective (TPC)—a Slack community for HR professionals across Southeast Asia and beyond—recently hosted an in-person workshop in celebration of International Women’s Day for People leaders to discuss and learn strategies for empowering women to lead in Singapore (and across the region). Inspired by the insightful discussions and drawing on the experiences of our community, this blog explores the key strategies that can propel women leaders forward. 

As we heard from panelist Shree Chandramogan, APAC Publishing HRBP at Riot Games,

“It’s not just about gender, it could be about cultural differences, racial, any of these things. It always holds a narrative.”

By fostering an inclusive environment that celebrates diversity, we can unlock the full potential of Singapore’s workforce.

Building a Strong Foundation for Women Leaders

women leaders

The conversation highlighted several key themes and factors to include in HR’s diversity management strategy that can empower women leaders in Singapore:

Put People First

Our discussion emphasized a core value we all share at TPC: prioritizing people. The more a leadership and HR team is supportive of people’s whole life, versus just their work life, the more it will help retention, productivity and morale. This sentiment shows up in several ways, from empathetic leadership to embracing flexibility and equity. Listening to your employees and advocating for their needs is paramount. This means designing working arrangements that consider varied preferences for remote, hybrid, or in-office work, prioritizing fringe benefits that support a balanced workforce such as flexible hours, mental health resources, or wellness stipends, and building a culture of open and continuous feedback.

Championing Sponsorship

Mentorship is valuable, but sponsorship takes championing women leaders a step further. Mentorship focuses on guidance and advice, whereas sponsorship is about advocacy and opportunity. A sponsor is someone who can use their influence to promote you and your work to others. They can recommend you for opportunities, introduce you to important people, and speak on your behalf.

As panelist VJ Posadas, Director of Corporate Partnerships Executive Education at INSEAD stressed,

“Women are over-mentored but under-sponsored. One way we can use our male privilege for allyship to make women’s work more visible is by getting men involved in being their sponsors.”

Of course, women leaders can and should continue to be coached and mentored by fellow women as their experiences are often relatable. Encouraging sponsorship programs can connect women leaders with influential advocates who can champion their advancement.

Tailor Skills Development Initiatives

Learning and development is a major factor in career growth and performance coaching, but not all skills development programs are created equal. When considering strategies to specifically champion women leaders, consider skills areas that have historically been pain points. For example, effective communication is essential for leadership success, and is often regarded with double standards for women and men. 

“Women leaders often downplay their accomplishments or hesitate to speak up in meetings. Developing strong communication skills is essential to project confidence and inspire your team.”

Kathy Teoh, Global Strategic DEI & Belonging Director at Arcadis

From strengthening communication and advocacy skills to addressing skill gaps in historically male-dominated industries such as programming and engineering, our panel discussions highlighted the importance of tailored skills development programs that equip women leaders with the confidence and skills to navigate challenging situations and inspire their teams. 

Supporting Individual Contributors

Leadership isn’t the only path to success, as panelist Wei Ching Ong, Founder of SELF, pointed out,

“Internally how are we promoting women? I’ve started to look at this collectively with other HR professionals, is the manager track really what women leaders want? Some women actually prefer the individual contributor track and that’s also worth nurturing. But has the organization designed programs that support growth as an individual contributor? You often hear the narrative that you have to be a manager to show that you are making progress, but that doesn’t have to be true.” 

Success looks different to everyone, and honoring your employee’s career aspirations is an excellent way to not only nurture them, but retain their talent. Organizations must value and design career paths for individual contributors, providing opportunities for growth and recognition outside of management roles.

Embracing Data-Driven Decisions

Quantitative metrics are important, but they don’t provide the whole picture. The panel emphasized the need for qualitative data, such as employee surveys and focus groups, to understand the lived experiences of women in the workplace.

Wei Ching wisely pointed out the need to, “dig deep into the metrics and get insights from your female workforce as well.” This includes questioning assumptions and having open conversations to understand the lived experiences of your employees.

One of the many examples covered was the assumption that women prefer a remote or hybrid set-up, as it may support them in obtaining a stronger work-life balance. Yet many women desire the opportunity to work in-office, presenting a much-needed separation from domestic work. 

Whereas other women may need additional support in addressing the challenges of balancing work and life, as Kathy Teoh suggests,

 “Many women leaders struggle to find a work-life balance. Organizations need to provide support systems, like flexible work arrangements and childcare options, to help women thrive in their careers.”

Gathering real-time data from your employees allows you to develop policies that will actually positively impact their working experience, whatever it may be.

Continuous Dialogue and Collective Action with TPC

women leaders

HR professionals are setting the standard for championing women, and doing the hard work of navigating the way to successful advancement. Those are just some of the insights shared during a recent People Collective event.

 If you haven’t already, join our vibrant community of HR leaders that make up our Slack community

Follow us on LinkedIn to stay up to date on the latest community gatherings and discussions.

Meet the Omni Team at HR Tech Festival 2024

The 23rd edition of HR Tech Festival Asia is upon us, convening in Singapore from 24 April to the 25th, and we are excited to announce that Omni will be exhibiting at this year’s event! Our team will be at booth D13, where in addition to some fun activities and prizes, we’ll be showcasing Omni’s latest product features—like Slack integrations and OKR goal setting modules, to name a few—and sharing how Omni’s automated workflows and highly customizable solutions are supporting modern, growing businesses to reach new levels of productivity and employee engagement.

Mark your calendars and get ready to supercharge your people strategy with learning, connection, and cutting-edge solutions. Register here to join us!

HR Tech Festival

What is HR Tech Festival?

Happening in Singapore from April 24th to 25th, HR Tech Festival is Asia’s largest HR technology and workforce management event. Returning for its 23rd year, HR Tech Festival brings together the region’s biggest HR community, global influencers, industry experts, and HR technology solution providers to learn, collaborate and inspire. Attendees can expect to learn about modern, innovative HR technology, network with other professionals, and discover new solutions for managing their workforce.

What does HR Tech Festival 2024 have to offer?

This year’s HR Tech Festival will feature the industry’s largest showcase of HR technology and

services in Asia Pacific. The two-day conference will cover the full spectrum of HR practices, from addressing skill gaps, to how technology is reshaping work, and how organizations can harness AI, automation, and data analytics to create more efficiencies.

Here are some of the key features you can expect from HR Tech Festival 2024:

Expert knowledge and learning programs

Dive deep into industry talks and workshops for expert-driven, actionable insights to apply within your own HR practice. From future-proofing your L&D programs (catch Kate Sullivan’s session at the Power Talk Stage) to mastering the art of talent acquisition, HR Tech Festival offers a trove of knowledge to equip you for the challenges of HR and ever-evolving industry trends.

Tech solutions for every HR need

With over 150 exhibitors, the expo halls will be filled with innovative solutions from leading HR tech solution providers (like Omni!). Whether you’re seeking to streamline your recruitment process, personalize employee learning experiences, boost employee engagement, or simply reduce the administrative load on your HR team, you’ll have the opportunity to meet the teams behind proven and innovative tech tools designed to simplify and streamline your HR processes.

Networking opportunities

Year after year, HR Tech Festival attracts a vibrant community of HR enthusiasts. This year’s event is expecting upwards of 8,000 attendees, leaving you plenty of opportunities to network with peers, exchange ideas with industry thought leaders, and spark meaningful connections that can propel your HR initiatives. Mingle at interactive sessions, attend insightful panel discussions, and build a network that extends far beyond the event.

Learn about the future of HR Tech at the Start-up Hub

Discover and experience the innovative HR solutions and upcoming technology in the Start-up Entrepreneurial Hub within HR Tech Festival. Showcasing young companies like Omni, that are changing the way you work and manage HR, this hive of future innovation and new technology will be filled with modern and unique ways of tackling HR’s most pressing and consistent pain points. Come by booth D13 to see how Omni is breaking the mold of rigid, standard HRIS solutions to offer highly customizable, bespoke solutions that grow alongside scaling modern businesses.

HR Tech Festival Asia goes beyond presentations and booths. Expect engaging activities, live demos, and thought-provoking discussions that will leave you energized and full of ideas to implement back at your organization.

Why should I attend HR Tech Festival?

Attending HR Tech Festival Asia will give People Leaders, managers, and CEOs a close look at the latest HR technology trends and best practices as they’re emerging. These insights allow attendees to future-proof their HR tools and strategies, keeping your team ahead of the curve in terms of innovation and regional, as well as global, trends.

HR Tech Festival 2024 will feature expert panel discussions, keynote speakers, and interactive workshops that cover a range of HR topics such as sustainable growth, AI, automation, data analytics, DEI, and talent acquisition, allowing you to tap into the areas that matter most for your organization.

Perhaps the most beneficial element of attending HR Tech Festival Asia is the opportunity to meet with HR tech providers and learn about their products and services. Choosing an HR software, payroll provider, or engagement platform is tricky, and learning about which one best suits your needs is even more challenging. Whether you’re trying to determine which HR tools your growing team needs in 2024, want to learn how AI tools can boost employee engagement, or are looking to grasp what features you should be looking for in your next HR software, exhibitors offer an opportunity for attendees to discover new technologies and solutions that can help streamline HR processes, enhance employee engagement, and improve their overall organizational performance.

Lastly, a great reason to attend HR Tech Festival Asia is the opportunity to network with industry experts and HR pros from across the region and various industries. Not only can you leave with stronger connections, you may unlock new opportunities.

Say hello to the Omni team at booth no. D13

This year’s HR Tech Festival 2024 is sure to present new, exciting ideas, products, and trends within the HR industry, providing attendees with unique perspectives and opportunities to build a strong HR practice for their organization.

Our team is excited to meet fellow HR enthusiasts and share the powerful benefits that the modern growing teams who leverage Omni experience from our customizable, all-in-one platform; like 70% time savings, 83% new actionable insights, and 6x faster onboarding (to name a few).

Stop by for a chat and see why Omni customers rate our platform 5 stars across the board.

Don’t miss an opportunity to learn how Omni can grow your team while shrinking your to-do list.

Not able to make it to HR Tech Festival 2024? Book a demo with our team for a virtual tour of our product, it’s free!

The Benefits of Using Salary Bands

What are salary bands?

Organizations use salary bands, also known as pay ranges or salary banding, to define the minimum and maximum compensation for specific job levels. These ranges play a crucial role in your company’s compensation strategy, helping you make informed decisions during hiring, performance management, and career development processes.

In simpler terms, establishing and openly communicating salary bands can benefit your organization by attracting and retaining top talent, as it brings a level of transparency for employees and prospective hires. Furthermore, salary bands help tackle pay parity and can aid in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) within your organization.

Examples of Salary Bands

salary bands

Salary bands vary by industry, location, and many other factors we will explore later on. Here are a few examples of salary bands as it stands today. Please note these are sample ranges based on general market research and should not be taken as definitive figures. Actual salaries may vary significantly depending on the factors mentioned above.

  • Chief HR Officer (CHRO) in Singapore: SGD 250,000 – SGD 500,000+ (Highly dependent on company size, industry, and experience)
  • HR Generalist in Hong Kong: HKD 350,000 – HKD 500,000 (Experience and qualifications can significantly impact this range)
  • Onboarding Specialist in Kuala Lumpur: MYR 45,000 – MYR 65,000 (May vary based on company size and industry)
  • HRIS Analyst in Bangkok: THB 600,000 – THB 800,000 (Specific skills and experience in HRIS software can influence this range)

Determining Salary Bands

Determining salary bands is dependent on a number of factors, including market rates and job scope. There is no perfect formula for determining salary bands, instead leaders should take a holistic look at the following factors to help determine the appropriate salary bands for roles within their organization. Getting your salary banding strategy right will help attract top performers and remain competitive in the job market.

Market Data

There are 3 key areas to consider when determining your company’s salary bands, the first of which being market data. These are the external elements that will contribute to calculating your salary bands.

Industry standards: Research the average salaries for similar positions within your industry, considering both national and regional variations, seniority level, and any particular niche the role you’re salary banding for might entail.

Job market demand: Analyze the current demand for the specific role you’re determining the salary band for. For roles that are in higher demand, it may justify a wider or higher salary band to remain competitive and attract the top talent for that particular skill set.

Geographic location: In the world of remote work, geography can play a big role in salary banding. Account for the cost of living differences in the regions you are hiring and creating a salary band for. Salaries typically need to be adjusted to reflect varying living expenses.

Internal Factors

Internal factors are the information unique to your organization or particular role you are creating the salary band for. These factors should be taken into consideration along with the market data to help determine your salary band.

Job evaluation: Define the responsibilities, required skills, and experience level for the specific job role within your organization you are salary banding for. A role that has an industry standard of S$6,000 monthly salary but requires a special certification or additional experience in order to fill the need within your organization may warrant an increase in salary band.

Internal equity: Ensure pay bands are fair and consistent across similar positions within the company to maintain employee morale, uphold an inclusive and equitable workplace, and avoid pay parity.

Performance management: Consider your internal compensation strategy and performance management practices. Review how salary adjustments within the band might be linked to performance evaluations. For example, if your policy is to offer a guaranteed salary adjustment after 9 months when linked to high-performance, this should be taken into consideration when building your salary band.

Organization budget: Be realistic about your financial resources, HR budget, and the trajectory of your organization. Ensure salary bands align with your overall compensation and salary budget to avoid overspending.

Learn more: Tools and Tips for Building an HR Budget

Additional Considerations

Company size and growth stage: Smaller companies or startups might offer different salary structures compared to established corporations. Consider your organization’s budget restrictions, compensation strategy, and funding calendar when salary banding.

Benefits: Remember that salary bands and compensation are holistic, meaning employee benefits contribute to compensation. Do you offer a hybrid work structure, mental health days, learning and development programs, or any additional perks? This overall compensation package should be considered, including benefits alongside salary bands.

Additional resource: Employee handbook template

Competitiveness: Aim to offer salaries that are competitive enough to attract and retain talent within the market. You’ll be able to determine what is considered competitive by factoring in all of the above research to help benchmark your salary band.

Difference Between Salary Bands and Pay Scales

Both salary bands and pay scales are used in setting employee compensation, but there are some key differences between them. Salary bands offer a broader range of acceptable salaries for a specific job level or group of similar jobs. This allows for some flexibility in setting individual salaries within that range, and are often used in conjunction with job grades, which group similar jobs based on their level of responsibility and complexity. Each job grade can have its own associated salary band. Whereas a pay scale typically refers to a more specific range of salaries for a single job title or a very narrow group of similar jobs. It often includes defined increments within the range, like steps on a ladder.

Salary Band vs. Payscale Example

Scenario: A company is determining compensation for HR Generalists with 2-4 years of experience.

Salary band

Salary band: $55,000 – $65,000

Justification: This band reflects the average market salary for HR Generalists with similar experience in the region. The company can consider factors like individual performance, specific skills, and certifications when setting salaries within this range.

Pay scale

Step 1: $54,000 (Starting salary)

Step 2: $56,000 (After 1 year of satisfactory performance)

Step 3: $58,000 (After 2 years of satisfactory performance)

Justification: This pay scale offers a more structured approach, with defined salary increases tied to time and performance. It provides clear expectations for career progression and salary growth.

Benefits of Using Salary Bands

salary bands

Transparency and Fairness 

Salary bands provide employees with a clear understanding of the pay range associated with their job level. This transparency fosters a sense of fairness and mitigates the risk of unconscious bias in compensation decisions.


Salary bands allow your organization some flexibility when setting individual salaries within the defined range. This flexibility can be used to consider factors like experience, performance, skills, and certifications, leading to a more customized compensation approach.

Standardized Compensation

Salary banding helps ensure consistency in compensation across similar positions within your organization. This standardization minimizes the risk of internal pay inequity and promotes a structured compensation system.

Attracting and Retaining Employees

Competitive and transparent salary bands can be a useful tool in attracting and retaining top talent. In addition to offering competitive compensation, knowing the potential career progression within their salary band can motivate employees to stay with your company, giving them a clear path to growth and progress.

Budgeting and Cost Control

Salary banding provides a framework for budgeting and cost control related to compensation. By understanding the salary range for each position, you can better predict and manage your personnel expenses.

Learn more: HR’s Guide to Creating, Tracking and Implementing a Salary Budget

Performance-based Compensation

While not inherently linked to salary bands, they can be used to facilitate performance-based compensation. By setting specific criteria for exceeding expectations or falling below them, salary bands can provide a reference point for adjusting salaries within the defined range based on performance.

Additional reading: Pros and Cons of Performance Based Pay

Challenges of Using Salary Bands

Market Alignment

Outdated bands: Salary bands can become outdated if not regularly reviewed and adjusted to reflect changes in the market rate. This can lead to companies offering non competitive salaries, making it difficult to attract and retain top talent. Which is why it’s important to regularly audit your salary bands to remain competitive and relevant to the market.

Limited flexibility: Salary banding may not offer enough flexibility to accommodate exceptional candidates whose skills and experience exceed the typical level for the position. This can lead to losing valuable talent who command a higher salary than the band allows.

Performance Incentives

Limited differentiation: Salary bands may not provide enough range to adequately reward exceptional performance. This can discourage employees from putting in extra effort if the potential salary increase within the band is perceived as minimal.

Focus on seniority: In some cases, salary banding might be primarily linked to seniority rather than individual performance. This can demotivate high performers who are new to the role or lack seniority.

Communication and Transparency

Misunderstanding: If not communicated clearly, salary bands can lead to misunderstandings and dissatisfaction among employees. It is crucial to explain the rationale behind the bands, their limitations, and how individual salaries are determined within the range.

Loss of individual negotiation power: Salary bands can be perceived as reducing the room for individual negotiation during the compensation discussion. This might impact employee morale and the feeling of being valued based on individual merit.

Best Practices for Setting Salary Bands


Market research and internal data is essential in setting equitable and data-driven salary bands. Conduct thorough research on average salaries for similar job titles in your industry and geographic location. Utilize reliable sources like salary surveys, competitor data, and government statistics to build an accurate picture of the market. Analyze internal compensation data to identify trends and ensure internal equity across similar positions. This helps maintain fairness and prevent internal pay discrepancies.

Transparency and Communication

Clearly communicate the purpose and rationale behind salary banding to all employees. Explain how salary bands are used and how they connect to individual compensation decisions. Make salary band information easily accessible to employees, through company intranets, handbooks, or internal communication platforms. This fosters transparency and reduces potential confusion.


Set a clear range for each salary band, allowing for some flexibility within the range to consider factors like individual experience, skills, certifications, and performance. Establish a clear process for handling exceptional candidates whose qualifications exceed the typical level for the position. This might involve seeking special approvals or utilizing alternative compensation strategies beyond the standard salary band.

Regular Reviews

Regularly review and update your salary banding strategy at least annually or more frequently if significant market fluctuations occur. This ensures they remain competitive and reflect any changes in market rates and internal factors. Continuously monitor external market trends and adjust salary bands accordingly to maintain competitiveness and attract top talent.

By adhering to these best practices, organizations can establish and maintain effective salary bands that promote fairness, transparency, and contribute to a strong overall compensation strategy.

Streamline Salary Banding and Compensation Management With Automation

Salary bands are a useful tool for bringing transparency and flexibility to your compensation strategy. Backed by market research, you can create a competitive and attractive compensation package to build high-performing and engaged teams.

Omni powers HR teams with easily accessible, real time data to fuel your salary banding strategy. Pull customized reports in a matter of minutes to review pay scales, compensation calendars, and employment data to inform your salary banding and ensure equitable and competitive compensation for your teams.

With localized payroll solutions, Omni helps streamline your payroll processes with automated payslips, tax calculations, and secure employee data for error-free and punctual payroll processing.

Further reading: Streamlining Payroll Processes with HRIS

Secure and centralized employee records allow HR teams to easily store, update, and communicate employee information across departments and with employees.

Omni makes it easier than ever to calculate accurate employee payments and tax calculations through automation that saves time and reduces errors. And with automated payroll information synchronization, end of month processing becomes a streamlined and seamless effort.

Book a demo with our team, or try out Omni for a free 14-day trial to learn how our HR solution can help you remain compliant and reduce your administrative workload for all of your payroll processes.

HR’s Cheat Sheet to Diversity Management

What is diversity management?

Diversity management has become an essential aspect of effective organizational leadership in today’s globalized world. The practice of diversity management goes beyond simply having a diverse workforce; it’s about actively fostering an inclusive environment where individuals from various backgrounds, identities, races, sexual orientations, faiths and genders feel valued, respected, and empowered to contribute their unique perspectives and talents to your organization. 

Diversity management involves implementing various policies and strategies throughout your entire employee lifecycle, from recruitment and hiring practices to management development programs and ongoing training initiatives.

By embracing diversity management, organizations can unlock various benefits. A diverse and inclusive workplace not only promotes fairness and equality for all employees but also fosters greater creativity, innovation, and problem-solving capabilities. Additionally, it can enhance your organization’s employer brand, attracting and retaining top talent from a wider pool of qualified talent.

Why should HR leaders prioritize diversity management?

diversity management

Aside from it being the right thing to do, diversity leads to stronger, more informed decision making and leads to more profitable outcomes for customers as well as the communities and customers they serve. By bringing a wider array of experiences into your organization, you welcome new perspectives and ways to approach problem solving. In an increasingly globalized world, diversity can help companies be more intune with the varied needs of their customers and thus lead to higher profitability.

The data agrees, research by Boston Consulting Group (BCG) found companies with more diverse management teams have 19% higher revenue due to innovation. And Harvard Business Review reports teams that mirror the diversity of their customers are better able to understand market needs and opportunities, leading to increased sales and customer loyalty.

Whatsmore, diversity management is a must for attracting and retaining talent. As Gen Z takes the workforce by storm, a commitment to DEI is a sure-fire way to pique their interest. In fact, a 2019 survey by Glassdoor found 67% of job seekers care about D&I, and 36% of employees aged 18-44 consider D&I important when determining where to work.

Learn more: The 4 Skills People Leaders Need For the Future of HR and the Gen Z Shift

Benefits of Diversity Management

It’s clear that diversity management is not just about doing the right thing; it’s about doing good business. By fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace, organizations can unlock innovative ideas, attract and retain top talent, better understand their customers, and ultimately, drive increased profitability. Let’s take a closer look at how diversity management in the workplace benefits both employees and organizations.

For employees

Empowerment and belonging

When individuals feel valued and respected for their unique perspectives and experiences, it fosters a sense of empowerment and belonging that benefits and compensation cannot provide. Being a part of a team where your experiences are celebrated and you feel welcome can lead to increased confidence and motivation to contribute their best work. 

Personal growth and development

Centering diversity management helps expose individuals to a wider range of ideas and perspectives, which can spark personal growth and development. This can take form in both big and small ways, from celebrating Lunar New Year at work or prioritizing International Women’s Day to committing to impactful DEI policies and leveraging local policies such as mental well-being programs. Diversity management in the workplace promoted opportunities for employees to learn about different cultures, experiences, and approaches to work.

Career advancement

Diverse workplaces often have more equitable promotion opportunities based on merit and performance, rather than biases or favoritism. When we welcome diversity into our organizations, particularly among leadership, we open up fairer pathways for career advancement for individuals from all backgrounds. In fact, BCG research found in companies with diverse leadership, employees are 45% more likely to report that they’ve had a pay raise or promotion in the past year. And a Women in the Workplace study by Leanin.org reports women are more likely to be promoted to manager when there are other women in senior positions. These numbers further highlight the importance of representation and diversity management.

For organizations

Talent acquisition and retention

A diverse and inclusive workplace is more attractive to top talent, as individuals from diverse backgrounds are more likely to see themselves represented and have a fulfilling career path. Diverse leadership signals that all employees have the potential for advancement. It can break down barriers and inspire individuals from underrepresented groups to pursue ambitious career goals. This leads to a stronger talent pool and reduced attrition rate.

Enhanced employee engagement and motivation

When employees feel valued and respected regardless of their background, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated in their work. According to McKinsey research, employees are three times more likely to be highly engaged when they work in diverse and inclusive teams. Employee engagement is directly linked to productivity, innovation, and creativity, which in turn drives revenue.

Reduced risk of discrimination and litigation

Creating a diverse and inclusive environment also helps to mitigate the risk of discrimination and legal issues related to bias or unfair treatment. Actively investing in diversity management initiatives will help your organization identify any discriminatory or unequal practices, and reduce the likelihood of future bias within your organization. This leads the way for a more equitable, positive, and productive work environment for everyone.

Diversity Management Challenges and Their Solutions

Diversity management in the workplace is a worthy effort to invest in, but it’s not without its challenges. It’s important for HR leaders to understand the potential risks and roadblocks that may arise when implementing diversity and inclusion management so you can overcome any challenges as they come.

Leadership commitment

Like most major initiatives, leadership buy-in is a must. “All the well intentions or great processes that you may have, if you want to implement it, you’ll always need leadership”, says Sara Fisher, Group Head of People & Culture at MoneySmart

But securing leadership buy-in isn’t always that simple. It’s important to know your audience when securing leadership buy-in, and you can do so by appealing to their interests. “It’s not one size fits all. It really depends on how they [leadership] communicate and what’s important to them. But from a practical standpoint, explain to them how an initiative contributes to the company bottom line and especially down to attrition, that resonates with their interests and helps to get their buy-in from there.” Fisher explains. 

Unconscious bias

Unconscious bias can be the enemy of diversity management. As it’s unconscious, many of us are often unaware of the biases we carry. To combat this, it’s important to educate ourselves and our peers and understand our own biases. What stereotypes do you have of people from different groups and how well they may perform on the job? What communication styles do you prefer? Sometimes what we consider to be appropriate or desirable qualities in a candidate may reflect more about our personal preferences than about the skills needed to perform the job.

Implement strategies to safeguard against unfair and biased practices. For example, implementing a panel interview format and ensuring that the committee is diverse, unit affiliation, job classification, length of service, variety of life experiences, etc. to represent different perspectives and to eliminate bias from the selection process can help mitigate bias in your recruitment efforts. 

Resistance to change

Change, even for the better, can be a challenging element to navigate when managing people. When introducing diversity management, employees may feel like they are being forced into something they don’t want to do, managers might feel threatened by changes in their roles or responsibilities as a result of new policies such as hiring quotas, and your organization may even experience resistance from customers who prefer dealing with people who look like them or have shared cultural experiences with them. Dealing with resistance to diversity management will require a tailored approach to each team and customer base, but some key strategies include:

  • Develop clear expectations: Establishing clear expectations for performance evaluations and annual reviews as well as setting up processes for handling complaints about unfair treatment based on identity helps ensure fair and equitable treatment for all employees at every level. These policies should be communicated clearly throughout every level of your organization.
  • Take a zero-tolerance approach: Putting your money where your mouth is, so to speak, is vital to upholding policies for diversity management in the workplace. Make sure employees know about your anti-discrimination policies as well as what constitutes harassment or discrimination. Develop and communicate clear instructions for how to report unfair practices within your organization to boost accountability and reduce instances of unfair practices.
  • Instill accountability: Developing a system of accountability will help ensure that managers and employees are held accountable when they fail to meet diversity management expectations; this includes providing training opportunities to build awareness around bias, and handling situations of discrimination.


A misguided desire for workforce diversity can lead HR leaders down the path of “tokenism,” where hiring and promotions are based primarily on identity rather than merit. This approach undermines the true spirit of diversity management and should be avoided. Some of the key strategies to mitigate tokenism are:

  • Focusing on systemic change: reframe goals away from quotas and targets, consider blind hiring practices, and create standardized promotion and development criteria that are consistently applied across the board. Remember, diversity management without equity and an inclusive culture is merely surface-level change
  • Invest in education and awareness: unconscious bias training, education around tokenism, and DEI training bring awareness and accountability to the diversity management experience.
  • Instill empowerment and accountability: Support the creation of employee resource groups (ERGs) where employees from underrepresented groups can find community, advocate for their needs, and contribute to company-wide DEI initiatives. Actively pair individuals from underrepresented groups with mentors and sponsors in senior leadership positions. And Track and analyze diversity statistics, including leadership demographics, pay equity, and representation across different departments. Hold leaders accountable for creating and maintaining an equitable and inclusive workplace.

Best Practices for Diversity Management

Establish a dedicated team or committee

Diversity management requires intentional action and dedicated programs to achieve true equity. Establishing a dedicated DEI team or committee helps ensure your diversity management goals get the support they need to flourish. Ensure the team itself is diverse in terms of backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives, and select passionate and knowledgeable individuals with a strong commitment to DEI to be involved.

Define clear goals, responsibilities, and accountability measures for the team and equip them with necessary resources, budget, and authority to implement initiatives effectively.

Gather and analyze data

Collect data on employee demographics such as age, gender, race/ethnicity, etc., hiring, promotion rates, compensation, and employee engagement across diverse groups. Ensure this data collection and storage is secure, complying with privacy regulations, and analyze the data by various demographic groups to identify potential disparities requiring attention such as pay parity. 

Data is a powerful tool as it’s not subject to bias, and can provide a clear picture and metric to your diversity management efforts. Regularly share your key findings and data insights with your organization in a clear and actionable format.

Develop clear policies and procedures

Clearly define what constitutes discrimination and harassment, outlining reporting and investigation procedures within your organization. Develop policies ensuring inclusivity and accessibility for individuals with disabilities in communication, physical workspaces, and technology. Establish clear policies promoting equal opportunity in recruitment, hiring, promotions, and career development. When it comes to recruitment practices, focus on the job requirements in your interview and assess experience but also consider transferable skills and demonstrated competencies, such as analytical, organizational, communication, coordination. Prior experience does not necessarily mean effectiveness or success on the job. 

Make these policies clear and known throughout your organization (be sure to add them as a part of your employee handbook.) And lastly, regularly review and update your policies to ensure they remain relevant and effective.

Additional reading: 10 DEI Policies Your Organization Needs and How to Implement Them

Unconscious bias training

Unconscious bias training is a huge first step in addressing and reducing bias, a key factor in diversity management. Utilize interactive and engaging training methods that encourage active participation and reflection. Train participants on practical strategies to identify and mitigate unconscious bias in decision-making and daily interactions.

Depending on your organization, it may be useful to cater training to different target audiences. Consider offering customized training sessions for different levels of employees, from managers to individual contributors.

As always, regularly evaluate the effectiveness of your training programs and update modules as needed based on employee feedback and changing DEI initiatives and trends.

Learning and development opportunities

Learning and development is a great way to keep employees engaged, and can promote a more equitable workforce when designed under diversity management initiatives.

Offer learning and development programs focused on cultural competency, diversity awareness, and inclusive leadership practices. Bring in a more personal element through mentorship; establish programs connecting diverse employees with mentors and sponsors who can offer guidance, support, and career development opportunities to further build a culture of belonging and advancement.

Lastly, provide access to professional development opportunities that cater to the diverse needs and interests of employees from various backgrounds. Ensure learning materials and resources are inclusive and reflect the diverse experiences, abilities, and perspectives of employees.

Open communication and feedback 

Diversity management and a truly equitable workplace hinge upon the ability to receive, digest, and implement employee feedback. This can be achieved by creating the proper channels and methods to collect employee feedback in a way that makes individuals feel safe and open to share their genuine opinions. To do so:

  • Create multiple channels for employees to provide feedback, suggestions, and voice concerns related to diversity and inclusion. 
  • Foster a safe and respectful environment where employees feel comfortable raising concerns about discrimination or bias.
  • Actively listen to employee feedback and demonstrate a sincere commitment to addressing their concerns.
  • Communicate back to employees about actions taken in response to feedback and how they contribute to overall DEI efforts.

Leveraging HR Tools to Champion Equity and Belonging

diversity management

Undoubtedly, DEI policies are crucial for fostering a positive workplace culture and drive organizational success. HR Information Systems (HRIS) play an important role in supporting these policies by automating processes, encouraging transparency, and providing insights to help organizations effectively implement and reinforce their DEI policies. Omni can play a crucial role in tracking diversity management in the workplace by providing tools for tracking various identity metrics, helping shine a spotlight on gaps in your leadership and team make up. Real-time talent data helps identify areas for improvement, and implement policies that promote an equitable workforce. 

With modern HR automation tools like Omni, you gain access to data-driven insights that facilitate informed decision-making, as well as seamless integrations that effortlessly connect with your existing employee favored systems, making your entire engagement process more efficient and modern. 

Our performance management module provides you with instant reports to track diversity and inclusion goals, ensuring these initiatives are prioritized and progress is measurable. Furthermore, our employee self-service portals empower employees to access and understand DEI policies, fostering awareness and inclusivity. 

With a full suite of modules supporting every aspect of your business, Omni’s intuitive and customizable platform integrates with your team’s favorite systems for a seamless and timely adoption, ensuring diversity, equity and inclusion are adopted into your company’s culture.

If you’d like to learn more about how Omni’s all-in-one HR software can bring your DEI initiatives to the next level, book a demo with us today and start building a more diverse and equitable organization!

HR’s Guide to Preparing for Mid-Year Performance Reviews

As we approach the midpoint of the year, it’s crucial to reflect on our progress and set the course for the remainder of the year. Feedback plays an important role in this process where a survey showed that 80% employees who have received meaningful feedback have higher engagement.

While annual and mid-year performance reviews are common tools for communicating feedback, public perception often criticizes them, questioning their accuracy and effectiveness. However, this underscores the importance of approaching performance reviews correctly.

Proper planning of mid-year performance reviews not only empowers your team to grow but also keeps employees engaged, fostering the thriving company culture you desire. Explore the benefits of mid-year performance reviews and tips on how you can prepare for it to maximize its potential.  

What is a mid-year performance review?

Mid-year performance reviews are evaluations conducted every six months, typically near the end of the second quarter. These reviews involve 1-on-1 meetings between a direct manager and an employee.

During this midpoint assessment, the manager reviews the employee’s performance goals and objectives to evaluate progress and ensure alignment with KPI and targets. Additionally, new performance goals and objectives may be suggested for the upcoming six months. 

Read next: A Guide to Mastering Performance Management

Why are mid-year performance reviews important?

Mid-year performance reviews are significant as they provide an opportunity to check in with employees, confirm their progress towards annual goals, make any necessary adjustments, and establish new goals for the next six months. These reviews also offer a chance to recognize employees’ achievements and discuss their development needs.

In essence, these mid-year performance reviews offer actionable steps and useful feedback for employees. They also encourage employees to share recent challenges and their overall work experiences, providing insights to create a more supportive workplace environment.

Benefits of Mid-Year Performance Reviews

Mid-year performance reviews offer several benefits for both employees and employers. These includes: 

  • Higher satisfaction levels: Checking in with your employees consistently and offering them the needed guidance shows that you care about their career growth and well-being. This promotes employee morale and satisfaction.
  • Higher engagement levels: mid-year performance reviews are a perfect chance to recognize and appreciate employees, which can make them feel valued and engaged.
  • Lower attrition rates: When you listen to employee feedback at regular intervals, you resolve issues promptly and enhance their work experience and productivity levels, reducing attrition rates.
  • Better work culture: To enhance your employee’s work experience and create an employee-focused culture, a mid-year performance review enables you to hear their ideas, feedback, and concerns and address them.
  • Balanced work allocation: mid-year performance reviews can help you determine whether an employee’s workload is excessive, adequate, or insufficient. This assessment provides valuable insights that can assist in effectively managing work capacities, reducing employee burnout.
  • Enhanced performance: When you set, track, and adjust goals via constructive feedback, you’ll see a boost in employee productivity and performance levels.
  • Reinforce company values: mid-year performance reviews provide managers with an opportunity to reinforce company values among employees. They can encourage behaviors that are in line with these values and address any misalignments as well.

Tips to Preparing for Mid-Year Performance Reviews

mid-year performance reviews

The success of mid-year performance reviews hinges on how seriously they are taken and how well they are prepared for. Here are some tips for HR leaders, managers, and employees to make the most of them in preparation for upcoming mid-year performance reviews. 

For HR leaders

Develop clear guidelines and templates

As an HR leader, you’ll find that effective mid-year performance reviews are based on clear guidelines and templates that define performance metrics.

Standardizing and structuring the process in this manner transforms these appraisals from subjective, unorganized reviews based on feelings and unconscious biases into objective, organized mid-year performance reviews based on data and facts. This approach also helps managers prepare their written mid-year performance reviews.

A good mid-year review example is when you’re assessing teams such as the social media team, consider investing in software solutions that provide managers with statistics for relevant metrics like engagement, amplification, virality rate and reach. 

Your template should include these metrics so that managers can evaluate employees based on the same criteria.

Train managers on conducting reviews

It is also crucial to train managers on conducting these mid-year performance reviews. You can create an agenda for them and walk them through it. This agenda typically includes:

  • Introduction: Clearly state the employee’s name, role, and job responsibilities, and the purpose of the mid-year performance review. 
  • Current performance and circumstances review: Discuss the employee’s daily processes and goals.
  • Roundup of the last performance review: Managers can start with talking points from the last review and progress from there.
  • Progress evaluation: Discuss the previously set objectives and whether the employee has achieved them. 
  • Actionable feedback: Provide feedback on the employee’s performance over the past six months and ensure they can act on it. 
  • Goal setting: Set new short and long-term goals and adjust old ones. Develop a plan with goals and a timeline, and offer extra support or reviews as needed. 
  • Receiving employee feedback: Encourage the employee to provide feedback on management and their work experience. Use this feedback for appraisals with managers. 

Relevant reads: The Manager’s Guide to Asking for Feedback

Facilitate communication and support

Communication and support are also crucial. Ensure that employees know about their mid-year performance reviews in advance and communicate the time and place, which should be private and quiet. 

This allows them to prepare their questions, suggestions, and input. They should also have a general understanding of the purpose and process of mid-year review in your company. 

Creating a supportive environment is key. Employees should understand that mid-year performance reviews are intended to help them grow. This should be evident in the tone, content, and the manager’s willingness to listen. Managers should have the necessary resources to support employees. 

One of many mid-year review examples for this is to remind managers to schedule and communicate mid-year performance reviews. This way, employees can book their preferred timing for the review and have enough time to prepare their questions. 

For Managers

As a manager, you can prepare for mid-year performance reviews in four ways:

Ensure clear performance expectations

To prepare for mid-year performance reviews as a manager, start by setting clear performance expectations and communicating them effectively to your employees.

Reviewing past mid-year review examples can be a great starting point to help you objectively assess progress and set goals that align with employees’ career vision. For instance, when conducting a review with a teacher, instead of stating she’s behind the curriculum, specify which lessons need completion before the mid-terms. 

Gather regular feedback

Secondly, gather regular feedback to show you value employees’ input and are committed to their satisfaction.

Use tools like employee satisfaction surveys to gather feedback on various aspects such as management and communication styles, task delegation, leadership abilities, workplace culture, and employment practices.

This feedback enables you to identify and address issues early, understand your coaching strengths and weaknesses, and enhance the overall employee experience. 

Calibrate expectations across all departments

Thirdly, calibrate expectations across all departments by referring to each employee’s job description to determine their responsibilities. Quantify your expectations using metrics and statistics that align with these responsibilities.

A great mid-year review example is to communicate specific targets for departments like customer services, such as average call duration, number of calls per day, and ratings expected. 

Communicate the process and timeline

Lastly, communicate the process and timeline clearly to provide employees with actionable steps. This makes feedback constructive and equips employees to handle it effectively.

Define the steps, tools, milestones, and deadlines involved in the process. Consider new responsibilities and skills employees want to learn, and incorporate them into the timeline. By following these tips, you can prepare for mid-year performance reviews in a way that enhances employee engagement and drives performance.

Relevant reads: Performance Review SMART Goals: 18 Examples to Drive Results

For Employees

As an employee, here are four tips to help prepare for your mid-year performance reviews and make the most of them. 

Review past performance reviews

Look back at previous appraisals to track progress and anticipate topics that your manager may discuss. This can provide insight into goals and benchmarks set in the past.

Perform a self evaluation

Conducting a self evaluation can help measure your progress against previously set goals and identify growth opportunities. For example, if you were responsible for testing code, consider whether you met deadlines during previous projects.

Develop talking points

Prepare topics that you want to discuss during the review, such as questions, concerns, suggestions or personal goals for the following year. Request additional resources if needed, especially if you are a new employee struggling with new tools or updates. 

Practice self-awareness

Last but definitely not least, approach your performance review with self-awareness, acknowledging your strengths and weaknesses. Be open to feedback and focus on growth opportunities. 

Take accountability for mistakes and seek guidance when necessary in order to improve. 

Stay Prepared for Mid Year Performance Reviews with Omni

mid-year performance reviews

Mid-year performance reviews don’t have to be a dreaded task, with the right framework and guidance, the exercise can become a useful tool in self-reflection and professional development. 

By embracing mid-year performance reviews and referring to the mid-year review examples provided above, and the conversations around them as a foundational element of performance management, your organization can empower your employees to proactively shape their growth and development. 

Omni’s customizable performance review feature allows managers to design a self-evaluation template to apply to employee performance reviews, track employee submissions, and derive critical insights to drive business decisions all in one centralized platform.

For more resources to improve your mid-year performance review cycle,

Book a demo with our team today to learn more about how Omni can aid your company culture, and help uncover the insights you need to build a highly engaged workforce.

What is an ESG Score and Why Should it be a Part of Your People Strategy?

According to the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) must be limited by 2025 to avoid the irreversible effects of climate change. Asia Pacific has a crucial part to play, as an increasing share of global emissions will come from the region; this has seen an increase from 35% in 2010 to 39% in 2019.

Net zero emissions ensures that business growth not only benefits the bottom line but also ensures a legacy for the people and the planet. To estimate your company’s impact on climate change and other no-less critical issues, you can refer to ESG HR specialists.

But what is an ESG score? In this article, we’ll delve into its definition, how it’s calculated, and why it’s crucial to incorporate it into your people strategy.

What is an Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Score?

what is an ESG score

An ESG Score, or Environmental, Social, and Governance score, is an unbiased, quantitative measure of a company, fund, or security’s adherence to ESG criteria. This score reflects the level of consideration ESG HR leaders give to ESG risks.

However, the answer to “what is an ESG score?” is a challenging one because it lacks standardization. Various providers use different metrics and rating systems, each focusing on one or more ESG categories and then computing an overall ESG score.

Still, what exactly does ESG HR score assess in terms of risks or concerns?

Some rating systems focus on general factors that are relevant across different industries, such as climate change, inclusion, diversity, and human rights. Others are more industry-specific, focusing on issues that are prevalent within those sectors.

For example, the roofing industry faces the risk of slip accidents, which can lead to severe injuries. This necessitates the implementation of fall protection measures.

How are ESG Scores Calculated?

Explaining the calculation process for an ESG score, which addresses the question “what is an ESG score?”, typically involves three main steps, depending on the rating agency.

Firstly, the rating agency collects data to assess your company’s environmental, social (including ESG HR practices), and governance risks. Resources may include:

This data is compiled using reporting frameworks such as:

  • Global Reporting Initiative (GRI)
  • Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI)
  • Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB)

Secondly, the reporting agency determines the weight or value to each data point based on its potential impact within a two-year timeframe. They then evaluate the company’s performance regarding these issues and assign a rating.

Finally, the agency calculates the overall ESG score by multiplying the ratings with their respective weights.

For instance, MSCI uses 37 key issues and assigns scores from zero to 10 based on their impact and timeliness. A higher score indicates better risk mitigation. Companies may receive a classification such as “leader” with a score range of  5.714 to 10.000, and a letter score of AA to AAA.

Omni Tip on ESG HR:
To get a well-rounded evaluation, you can compare your company’s ESG score across different agencies.

How Does ESG Score Impact Your Organization?

what is an ESG score

Now that you have a grasp on “what is an ESG score”, It’s important to understand its importance and give ESG HR the attention it deserves.

Ensure Compliance With Regulations

A strong ESG score can deter regulatory agencies scrutiny, minimizing the risk of investigations, fines, and legal issues. This translates to substantial cost savings and avoids reputational damages that often arise with legal troubles. A high ESG score signifies that your organization is committed to meeting environmental, social, and governance standards, which can help build trust with regulators and stakeholders alike.

Source of Competitive Advantage

A high ESG score can heavily impact your business by creating a competitive advantage. Here’s why:

Investors may incorporate an ESG review into their investment analysis to gauge a company’s long-term potential, risks, and strategic priorities.

For other investors who prioritize ethical and sustainable business models, they may use an ESG rating as a primary screening criterion. Companies with low ESG scores, typically below 50, may be eliminated from consideration by socially responsible investors.

These investors often compare a company’s ESG performance across various providers for a comprehensive assessment. Additionally, they assess a company’s ESG HR practices against that of other companies. This underscores the importance of understanding ‘what is an ESG score’ to gain a competitive advantage.

Attracting and Retaining Workforce

A higher ESG score corresponds to lower ESG risk rates and lower attrition rates. But what is an ESG score to top talent, and why do they care?

Millennials and Gen Z, who form the majority of the workforce, prioritize mitigating ESG risks due to their heightened awareness and access to resources.

According to the Asia Pacific Workforce Hopes and Fears Survey 2022, these generations value transparency regarding health and safety records, economic impact, environmental impact (such as climate change), and diversity and inclusion in the workplace. This demand on transparency indicates that millennials and Gen Z make employment decisions based on these factors, highlighting the importance of employee engagement and attraction.

Gen Z, often called the “change generation,” prioritizes purpose over salary and is highly conscious of its social impact. These generations seek proof of sustainability efforts, making an ESG score a key indicator of effective ESG HR risk management.

As organizations focus more on improving their ESG commitment and scores, HR departments can achieve greater success by retaining and attracting top talent, reducing the cost of recruitment, and enhancing employee performance.

Read next: Is Your Business Prepared to Work With Gen Z and Gen Alpha?

Risk Management of ESG Score

While ESG scores offer various benefits, they also come with risks that organizations need to manage effectively.

Firstly, data management and transparency is important. Organizations need to ensure accurate and reliable data collection, storage, and reporting to provide stakeholders with complete insight into their ESG performance.

Secondly, establishing clear metrics and methodologies for assessing ESG performance is crucial. This includes defining relevant indicators, setting performance targets, and regularly evaluating progress against these benchmarks.

Finally, internal governance plays a critical role in managing risk of ESG scores. Organizations need robust governance structures and processes in place to oversee relevant ESG initiatives, ensure accountability, and drive continuous improvement in ESG performance.

Why is it Important to HR Leaders?

To gain a deeper understanding of “what is an ESG score”, it is important to recognize the increasingly important role of HR leaders in managing the social aspect of ESG. Hence, incorporating ESG HR into your People strategy is pivotal.

Attracting and retaining talent

As mentioned earlier, ESG scores play a huge role in attracting and retaining talent. It is imperative to review and potentially update your HR policies and practices to stay ahead of the game when it comes to employee attraction and retention.

Understanding the concept of an ESG score and aligning with its criteria can further empower you to reshape your existing policies, thus fostering a more attractive environment for both current employees and prospective talents.

Shaping company culture

Company culture plays an important part in shaping employee experiences. With the growing emphasis on ESG HR efforts, HR leaders must adeptly manage employee relationships. Recent events such as the COVID-19 pandemic underscore the need for proactive engagement and support from HR in cultivating a positive company culture.

Read next: Strategies and Tools for Defining Culture in the Workplace

Aligning with stakeholder values

Aligning with stakeholder values is crucial for organizational success. By exploring the question, “what is an ESG score?” and embracing its principles, HR can pave the way to aligning company values with those of stakeholders. This alignment not only benefits the organization’s reputation but also fosters trust and credibility among stakeholders and employees.

Incorporating ESG Into Your People Strategy

Integrating ESG into your People strategy is vital for modern organizations. It aids in attracting and retaining top talent, shape a positive company culture, and ensure alignment with stakeholder values. HR leaders play a key role in managing the social aspects of ESG within this framework.

All-in-one HR software like Omni can be instrumental in this process by providing features such as comprehensive employee records, which allow for the analysis of workforce demographics and employee well-being, key aspects of ESG management.

Furthermore, our performance management module facilitates the integration of sustainability goals in performance evaluations. It also provides real-time analytics for data driven decision making, offering instant reports to monitor and incentivize employees towards achieving ESG objectives.

With a comprehensive suite of modules that cater to all aspects of your business, Omni’s intuitive and customizable platform seamlessly integrates with your team’s well-loved systems, facilitating a smooth and timely adoption of ESG principles into your company’s culture.

If you’d like to learn more about how Omni’s all-in-one HR software can bring your ESG commitment to the next level, book a demo with us today and start building a more sustainable and socially responsible organization!

In a 2023 Ipsos survey conducted in over 31 countries, Singapore had the highest satisfaction rate for its healthcare system (71%). Yet, that didn’t seem to translate to the mental health department. Mental health was found to be the top 2023 health concern, higher than cancer and the coronavirus.

By better understanding workplace mental health Singapore can enhance its economy and transform its market. Even on an individual level, it can boost employee morale, engagement, and productivity.

In this article, we’ll help you better support your workers with employee mental health strategies and programs designed for workplace mental health Singapore.

Are Singaporeans Facing Poor Mental Health at Work?

Unfortunately, when it comes to workplace mental health Singapore isn’t the best. We’ve mentioned how mental health is the top health concern, but the survey results revealed there’s more to it than that.

“In the past year, 30% of Singaporeans say that they had felt stressed to the point where it had an impact on how they lived their daily lives; 26% of Singaporeans had felt stressed to the point where they felt like they could not cope/deal with things;”

The survey further adds, “24% had felt depressed to the point that they felt sad or hopeless almost every day for a couple of weeks or more, and yet another 12% had seriously considered suicide or self-hurt.”

If you’re unsure how that looks in the workplace, Alistair Carmichael, Expert Associate Partner of the People and Organizational Performance Practice at consultancy McKinsey & Company, stated that the percentage of people reporting signs and symptoms of burnout in Singapore is higher than the global average (at 29%).

employee mental health

Why Employee Mental Health is Important

For workplace mental health Singapore should support it simply because it’s a fundamental right, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

More than that, it means less tension and conflicts, higher retention, productivity, attendance, and performance rates, better employee morale and working conditions, and increased returns.

Additionally, employee mental health renders the workplace more accessible to people with psychological conditions. With workplace mental health Singapore will witness more inclusion, recovery, and social functioning. Not to mention, your business will enjoy higher engagement and productivity when employees are at their healthiest.

How employers can better support mental well-being in the workplace

To reap the benefits of enhanced workplace mental health Singapore business owners like you can help by:

Promoting mental health awareness

Employee mental health awareness efforts reduce the stigma around mental health struggles with knowledge. In fact, indicators of a workplace with good mental health include discussions and dispelling myths about mental health. To achieve that, you can:

  • Offer training, talks, and workshops by community partners in employee mental health awareness and literacy.
  • Get supervisors to discuss employee mental health conditions.
  • Start company-wide initiatives or employee mental health-related corporate social responsibility (CSR) events.
  • Spread awareness about the resources available to employees who need help.

Offering employee assistance programs

Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) are voluntary, work-based intervention programs that should help employees with their personal and work-related problems, including everything from work stress to mental health disorders.

EAP counselors offer free and confidential short-term counseling, referrals, assessments, and follow-up services. They also consult supervisors and managers to address broader employee challenges.

Annex A includes a non-exhaustive list of EAP service providers with details on their services. You’ll find “80% of counselors and psychologists registered with Singapore Association for Counseling and Singapore Psychological Society or equivalent Association/Society; as well as (ii) at least 1 year of experience in providing EAP services.”

Flexible work arrangements

Flexible work arrangements (FWAs) are work schedules or environment conditions that don’t follow the restrictions of a traditional workplace, reducing stress and promoting work-life balance.

To improve workplace mental health Singapore business owners like you can allow extensions and modified assignments, time-off for health appointments, annualized or banking hours, part-time contracts, leaves, sabbaticals, job sharing (where employees split full-time jobs with other employees), and compressed work weeks (like four 10-hour days).

However, you have to establish FWA policies so that employees know which options are available (flexible time, place, or workload arrangements) and how to request them.

These policies should balance between employee and business needs. You can check out the Tripartite Alliance for Fair & Progressive Employment Practices (TAFEP) if you need guides on FWAs.

Training for managers

For better workplace mental health Singapore enables your managers and frontline supervisors to be trained in employee mental health conditions. After all, they’re partly responsible for the well-being of others and should implement policies to support them. Such training programs can help them do the following:

  • Know the signs of emotional distress and spot them in workers.
  • Know how to approach workers who may be struggling.
  • Be aware of the resources that they can direct those who need help to.
  • Develop the interpersonal skills needed to share their stories so that others feel encouraged to do the same.
  • Understand how job stressors impact employee mental health and how to manage them.

Regular check-ins

Regular one-on-one check-ins allow you to establish a relationship built on trust with your peers and allow you to give positive or constructive feedback in a much better way. Check-ins and the trust they build, help employees develop emotional safety at work, and give leaders a closer insight into their employee’s mental health. In conjunction with proper training, managers can be prepared to respond sensitively to any struggles employees share during those meetings.

Check-ins are especially important for workers after they return from time-offs for physical or mental health conditions. These check-ins ensure recovering employees are dealing well with their return to work. If not, you can make adjustments to their workloads.

Inclusive policies

To boost workplace mental health Singapore HR leaders can set inclusive policies. With them, your workplace can accept people with mental health disorders and varied abilities, avoid discrimination during hiring, and access wider talent pools. Review your employee mental health policies, and ask yourself:

  • Are these policies inclusive?
  • Are they suitable and customized to the needs of my employees?

If not, you can work with external partners (as needed) to help reshape policies to make them more inclusive. For example, you can add mental health days off to the paid time-off (PTO), establish anti-discriminatory policies among peers, and set policies regarding the confidentiality of information that employees share about their mental health.

workplace mental health Singapore

Singapore Programs Available for Employee Mental Health Improvement

To boost workplace mental health Singapore has effective programs, which can be helpful tools to make your workplace more mental-health friendly and increase employee satisfaction, retention, and performance rates.

National Council of Social Services (NCSS)

The National Council of Social Services (NCSS) is an umbrella body including over 500 member social service agencies in Singapore. It gives you access to social services, empowers these agencies, and nurtures strategic partnerships within this field.

For example, the NCSS released a guide called Beyond the Label, addressing stigma in corporations, and the Mental Health Toolkit for Employers, your guide to hiring and supporting people with mental illnesses.

MindFit at Work

If you want a better mental health workplace, Singapore is home to a MindFit at Work head office, a workplace wellbeing company. It offers employee mental health, well-being, mindfulness, and resilience training, consultations, and EAP programs. The company uses psychology and behavioral science to improve the performance and lives of your employees.

Workplace Outreach Wellness (WOW) Programme

With the Workplace Outreach Wellness (WOW) programme for workplace mental health Singapore offers you the support your company needs, with a locally registered Unique Entity Number (UEN) and the objective of creating a mentally healthy workplace.

The Health Promotion Board (HPB) created this programme with its workplace health promotion offerings. Then, the Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF) became an appointed project manager for it in 2023. Its general programs cover various activities that promote employee mental health, such as:

  • Physical activity
  • Mental wellbeing
  • Nutrition
  • Ergonomics

WOW also offers chronic disease health screening and health coaching and gives you co-funding options.

Wellbeing Champions Network

The Wellbeing Champions Network is a program for workplace mental health Singapore supported. In fact, the Tripartite Alliance Limited supports the Wellbeing Champions Network.

The network includes Wellbeing Champions who “(i) rally senior management to implement policies and to support employees’ mental wellbeing; (ii) organize and curate mental wellbeing programmes and resources; and (iii) establish a system to refer persons in distress to professional help.”

In short, this community features a number of Champions, who are management-level employees implementing wellbeing initiatives for the company, possibly with the help of other employees.

This way, you can create a supportive work environment, normalize employee mental health practices, give your employees access to training and resources, and refer them to professionals (if needed).

WorkWell Leaders Workshops

Thanks to WorkWell Leaders (WWL) Workshops for workplace mental health Singapore has a non-profit organization that helps you build healthy workplaces. It uses leadership programs and practices that increase support and inclusivity and designs frameworks that help you apply policies all over the company.

This organization calls for managers to improve their own well-being as a necessary step in improving the well-being of employees. This mentality is clear in its programs. The Be Well series is composed of the following programs:

  • CEO Dialogue Twice yearly closed-door gatherings for CEOs to discuss pragmatic solutions of Being Well to Lead Well in a safe space.
  • CEO Commit A step-by-step guide developed for CEOs to manage their own wellbeing across all dimensions of their lives and to help them better empathize with the wellbeing of team members.
  • CEO Connect – A peer support program that allows CEOs to share personal wellbeing challenges and insights, fostering honest conversations among leaders.
  • CEO Breath Monthly mindfulness sessions for CEOs to enhance focus, clarity, and interpersonal connections while promoting wellbeing and encouraging the integration of mindfulness in work environments.

Additionally, there’s the Lead Well initiative, featuring the following programs:

  • Learn – Collaborative training with knowledge partners, to provide a deep dive into wellbeing issues, such as organizational mental health frameworks, peer support group establishment, and employee reintegration after mental health challenges.
  • Action – A members-only assessment of corporate mental health service providers, aiding informed choices for employee wellbeing.
  • Share – Designed for HR and operations leaders, these sessions offer practical wellbeing solutions, encourage knowledge sharing, and promote awareness of available resources.
  • Inspire – WorkWell Leaders Awards & Gala to establish a national standard for best practices in employee and leadership wellbeing and culture that drive business outcomes.

Championing Employee Mental Health with Omni

With the right tools, you can ensure a smooth transition to a more inclusive workspace that champions employee mental health.

Omni empowers HR teams with the tools they need to make simple yet impactful changes to improve the accessibility within their organizations. Whether it’s updating leave policies, helping you easily prioritize new policies that support employee mental health, or access to employee data to swiftly analyze performance and detect signs of employee burnout. Omni’s highly customizable platform equips you with the tools and systems you need to make updates, save time, and connect with your workforce.

Diversity is a key driver of innovation, and is particularly important (and impactful) when it comes to leadership positions. 

When we think of diversity initiatives, organizations tend to focus on factors such as race or gender, but often fail to consider ability. 

Persons with disabilities (PWDs)  often face difficulty in getting jobs, let alone reaching a position of power. However, the Singapore government has set a target of increasing the PWD employment rate by 40% by 2030. To reach this target, 10,000 more PWDs require employment, as it stands at 31% as of now. 

Agencies like SG Enable are helping the government reach that target by providing education and employment opportunities to PWDs.

In this article, we will take a closer look at SG Enable, and strategies for creating an equitable working environment. 

What is SG Enable?

Based in Singapore, SG Enable is an organization dedicated to empowering individuals with disabilities. They offer various support services, addressing aspects like education, employment, healthcare, and social inclusion. The focus extends to those facing physical, mental, intellectual, or sensory development challenges, with conditions involving total or partial loss of bodily functions. 

The agency, with all its efforts, focuses on creating an inclusive environment, helping people with disabilities to engage in society and actively lead fulfilling lives. Even when we are yet to reach the set employment targets, SG Enable has seen considerable growth in job opportunities for PWDs in growth sectors such as logistics, healthcare, IT, banking, and the public sector. It aims to take the numbers up from here to break the notion that PWDs can only thrive in the F&B and Hospitality sectors. 

SG enable

What are the Services Offered by SG Enable?

SG Enable helps PWDs become independent, confident, and financially secure by providing the following support services: 

  • Employment opportunities: the agency excels at connecting PWDs with relevant skills and qualifications with employers 
  • Disability professionals network: the network helps disability professionals learn more about development in policies, practices, and trends in disability 
  • Consultancy services: the agency helps organizations enable disability inclusion, allowing them to serve consumers with disabilities better 
  • Training services: SG Enable puts enough effort into training individuals with disabilities to help them thrive in their personal and professional development  
  • Financial assistance: the agency provides financial support to PWDs and their families using government grants and schemes
  • Accessibility support: SG Enable recognizes the importance of providing accessible support to ensure PWDs thrive in society without hassle. 

Complications Faced by PWDs to Get a Job in Singapore

Research has shown that of the resident persons with disabilities in Singapore in the age group 15 to 64, 31.4% were employed, 3% were unemployed, and 65.7% were outside the labor force

As we can see from the current status of PWDs, it’s time we make a collective effort to change the percentage of people outside the labor force. But before that, let’s understand the complications faced by PWDs to get a job in Singapore: 

Limited accessibility 

When buildings lack ramps or elevators, it becomes difficult for PWDs to access workplaces or attend job interviews. Transportation hurdles add to the challenge, as inadequate public transportation or lack of private options can make commuting to work difficult. 

Moreover, the requirement for technology in many jobs becomes an additional barrier. If tools and platforms are not designed with accessibility, PWDs may find it challenging to perform essential tasks. 

Prejudice and stereotypes

Employers and colleagues often underestimate the skills and potential of PWDs based on pre-existing stereotypes. Employers might hold unconscious biases that PWDs are incapable, leading to discriminatory hiring practices, such as overlooking qualified candidates with disabilities.

Even if PWDs end up getting employment, they can be subject to hostile work environments that stem from prejudice towards disabilities. They might be excluded from important decisions, social events, or decision-making processes. Such a negative work culture often pushes them to leave the organization. 

Limited job opportunities

People, including PWDs, have a belief that disabilities limit the availability of job options. However, there have been plenty of instances where PWDs have thrived in different sectors, such as technology. 

For example, Mr. Joshua Tseng, who is blind, works as an accessibility consultant with Etch Empathy, an NPO. He looks into and deals with accessibility issues of software like apps and websites. This further helps people with different disabilities access crucial platforms like banking apps more easily. 

Such instances are explicit depictions that limiting job opportunities due to disabilities is a big issue hindering the growth of PWDs globally. 

Lack of inclusive policies

Companies often lack inclusive policies that consider the unique needs and abilities of PWDs. Sometimes, PWDs need help to apply for a job as online application processes are incompatible with assistive technologies. If they get a job, they deal with the absence of flexible work options such as remote work, hybrid setup, or adjusted schedules. 

In fact, employees and managers may not receive adequate training on creating an inclusive work environment. PWDs need to receive dedicated attention and instructions per their requirements to feel more valued and welcomed in the organization. 

Educational barriers

PWDs may need help getting specific educational assistance, like sign language interpreters, note-takers, or adaptive technology. For individuals with visual, hearing, or cognitive impairments, ensuring materials and resources are available in accessible formats becomes vital.

Without this accessibility, their learning and academic success are significantly hindered. Moreover, PWDs often experience restricted opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities, internships, and vocational training programs. This limitation hampers their ability to develop practical skills essential for the job market.

Communication barriers 

Many workplaces rely heavily on digital communication tools such as email, messaging apps, and collaborative platforms. PWDs may encounter obstacles if these tools are not designed with accessibility features, such as screen readers, magnification options, or compatibility with assistive technologies. 

Financial barriers

Many PWDs require assistive technology or equipment to perform their job duties. These technologies remain costlier, making it difficult for organizations to acquire and maintain them. 

From the perspective of PWDs, they might need help affording the training programs and educational opportunities required to get into specific sectors. 

Despite anti-discrimination laws in place, PWD may still face discriminatory practices during recruitment and hiring processes. Some employers may also not provide reasonable accommodations, as the law requires, to enable PWDs to perform their job tasks effectively. 

Moreover, enforcement of disability-related employment laws and policies may be insufficient, leading to a lack of accountability for non-compliance.

wellbeing champions

Advantages of Employing Persons with Disabilities

Employing persons with disabilities can do wonders for your organization. Here are some significant advantages you will experience: 

Innovation and creativity

When employing persons with disabilities, you open your organization to some out-of-the-box ideas. They can bring unique perspectives and problem-solving skills to the workplace. You’ll be surprised to see the innovative ideas that stem from the minds of those who have gone through terrible misery. 

Take Nicholas Huchet, for example, a French Drum player whose right hand was amputated. He then built his own myoelectric prosthesis in a lab using a 3-D printer. Surprisingly enough, the design of his prosthesis cost him only 200 € when the market cost was between 35000-45000€. 

Huchet then moved further to head an association. He started a project to develop affordable myoelectric prostheses and let people participate in the process to help them find the best possible solution for their disability. 

Access to untapped skills

Studies have shown that autistic people excel at paying attention to details, completing tasks efficiently, and showing great dedication to their work. Despite having these traits, a minimal number of autistic people are employed. 

That’s just one example of the potential we miss out on when neglecting people with PWDs. As people that live in a world that may not be fully accessible to their needs, PWD often possess excellent problem solving skills with an innovative approach and a focus on adaptability. 

Increased productivity

Many leaders in the technology arena are putting an effort into breaking stereotypes and experiencing enhanced productivity after bringing PWDs to their teams.

In our conversation with Mr. Rongzhong Li, the CEO/Founder of Petoi, the maker of futuristic bionic robot pets for adults and kids, he told us, 

When I brought in a team member with a disability, their unique perspective and problem-solving skills added a whole new dimension to our projects. It’s not about charity; it’s about building a stronger, more creative team. Plus, it turns out there are tools and strategies that make the workplace even more inclusive. Simple things like making sure your office is physically accessible and using communication tools that accommodate various needs can make a huge difference. Creating an equitable working environment isn’t rocket science; it’s just about being open, flexible, and recognizing the value everyone brings to the table.”

With simple changes in your current practices, you can create an equitable working environment that takes productivity to the next level and boosts employee engagement. 

Positive impact on workplace culture

When an organization actively hires people with disabilities, it demonstrates a commitment to inclusivity. This commitment helps create an environment where individuals of all abilities feel welcome and valued. 

Companies that make an active effort in hiring and helping people with disabilities reach leadership positions and create a thriving company culture that people want to be a part of. Such efforts significantly reduce attrition rates as strong workplace culture and inclusivity foster high levels of engagement.

Tools and Strategies to Create an Equitable Working Environment

Did you know that 160 million people alone with moderate and severe vision impairment (MSVI) are within the working age? In fact, globally, the annual cost of potential productivity losses of MSVI and blindness was $410.7 billion

Imagine the drastic economic impact worldwide when people with the capabilities to contribute aren’t given enough opportunities to do so.

To ensure we reduce this number, here are some ways to create an equitable working environment where PWDs get their fair share of chances, opportunities, and financial benefits: 

Diversity and inclusion training

According to a Harvard Business Review Report that focused on actions taken by organizations around diversity and inclusion, 78% of leaders claimed that they focus on employee training in areas such as bias reduction and inclusion. You can take a lot of initiatives to mitigate bias. As for PWDs, unconscious bias training could be of utmost help. 

Unconscious bias training involves conducting activities where decisions or judgments are made, and participants discuss potential biases. For instance, a scenario might include hiring based on resumes and job applications. 

Participants could analyze their immediate impressions, preferences, or assumptions regarding educational backgrounds, experiences, or disabilities. This exercise helps prompt individuals to recognize unconscious biases that may unconsciously affect their evaluation of candidates.

Closely examining these situations will help participants handle real-life situations differently. It will help them break their set notions and create a more welcoming organization for PWDs. 

Inclusive hiring practices

To create an inclusive workplace, you must cultivate a culture promoting open discussions about disabilities. However, inclusivity should not be confined to the workplace alone; it should extend to the hiring process. Here are some steps you can take: 

  • Craft clear job postings accessible to screen readers.
  • Use flexible interview approaches, such as remote or video interviews
  • Form a diverse interview panel to reduce biases and enhance objectivity
  • Implement online application systems with ease of navigation and submission 
  • Provide training for hiring managers and recruiters on disability 
  • Proactively inquire about candidates’ accommodation requirements and fulfill them

You can also collaborate with disability organizations and participate in job fairs explicitly targeting persons with disabilities. Such hiring practices will show your candidates that your organization respects and values all talent. 

Equal pay analysis tools

To mitigate any pay disparities that may affect PWDs, organizations can rely on compensation data to analyze employee pay across their organization.

Using payroll tools, collecting, centralizing, and analyzing this data becomes more effortless. It also allows you to review payroll variations at a glance. To identify disparities, you can then examine the salary levels for similar roles and responsibilities. Adjustments are also more manageable with these tools as you can quickly assess and make adjustments without disrupting payroll practices.

Flexible work arrangements

Flexible work arrangements benefit employees in various ways. For PWD this may offer additional accommodations for medical appointments, transportation needs, or other particular nuances that may affect their ability to keep regular work hours or commute daily.

Some organizations opt for job-sharing arrangements where two employees share the responsibilities of one full-time position. This can benefit PWDs who prefer a reduced workload or need more time for self-care. 

You should also implement flexible leave policies that accommodate the unique needs of PWDs, including medical appointments, rehabilitation, or intermittent leave. 

Inclusive policy management systems

An organization’s inclusive policy focuses on practices, procedures, or interactions accommodating the diverse needs of all individuals regardless of differences such as race, gender, age, or ability. Whether it’s eliminating gender discrimination, racism, or issues related to disabilities, these policies make for a more equitable work environment.

Ensure you implement frameworks that break the barriers and provide equal access to information, services, and opportunities for everyone, including PWDs. This includes designing and managing accessible websites and digital content, creating physically accessible places, and using suitable communication methods. And can play out in seemingly simple ways that have a huge impact on the employees who benefit from them, such as adding closed captioning to video calls for hearing impaired individuals.

You should also support forming employee resource groups focused on disability inclusion. These groups can provide a platform for PWDs to share experiences, offer support, and collaborate on initiatives to enhance inclusivity. 

Championing Inclusion with Omni

Now that you have seen how SG Enable helps PWDs gain better opportunities, it’s time to update your processes. With the right tools, you can ensure a smooth transition to a more inclusive workspace. 

Omni empowers HR teams with the tools they need to make simple yet impactful changes to improve the accessibility within their organizations. Whether it’s accessible job postings that allow automated interview screenings and scheduling, helping you easily prioritize hiring practices for a more diverse workforce, or access to employee data to swiftly analyze payroll practices or personnel audits. Omni’s highly customizable platform equips you with the tools and systems you need to make updates, save time, and connect with your workforce.

A Guide to Singapore’s Workplace Wellbeing Champions Network

A physically and mentally well workforce is more productive than those torn between unrealistic deadlines and pressure. Workplace wellbeing initiatives aim to create such work cultures where employees thrive, grow, and are satisfied with their jobs.

In fact, according to a 2020 Deloitte survey on workplace wellbeing, 80% of executives claimed that well-being was their top priority. Yet, the Human Capital Trends report stated that nearly 90% of employees feel their work life is getting worse.

The data illustrates that despite the current efforts of Singaporean companies to invest in workplace wellbeing, their strategies are falling short. This disconnect is a contributing factor to the necessity of Singapore’s Workplace Wellbeing Champions Network, a government-backed initiative to help create a more positive work environment for Singapore employees.

What is Workplace Wellbeing?

Workplace wellbeing refers to optimizing employees’ health, satisfaction, and overall fulfillment within a professional setting. It extends beyond the traditional notions of health and safety by incorporating elements of physical, mental, emotional, social, and professional dimensions. At its core, workplace wellbeing seeks to create an environment that not only protects employees from physical harm but helps them navigate stress, career dilemmas, and other work-related issues.

Some examples of workplace wellbeing initiatives are as follows:

  • Allowing employees to work remotely or provide flexible working hours
  • Offering gym memberships, fitness classes, or wellness workshops
  • Providing access to counseling services and stress management workshops
  • Organizing team-building activities, social gatherings, and other group activities
  • Conducting regular one-on-one meetings between employees and managers
  • Encouraging the use of vacation days and time off to prevent employee burnout 
  • Offering training programs, mentorship, and other opportunities for career advancement

Implementing a blend of these wellbeing initiatives is crucial, as physically and mentally well employees are likely to be more focused, energetic, and productive in their roles. Such a positive culture that prioritizes employee wellbeing also attracts top talent and reduces organization’s attrition rate. This is becoming increasingly important as 59% of employees would consider leaving their current role for a company offering better wellbeing benefits.

wellbeing champions

Role of a Workplace Wellbeing Champion

A workplace wellbeing champion is a trusted individual within your organization whom employees feel comfortable turning to when they need support. Instead of internalizing their concerns, these wellbeing champions bridge the communication gap between leaders and team members. With this, timely action can be taken, preventing a surge in employee turnover rates and serving as a value add and benefit to attract new talent.

As Mr. Aslam Sardar, Chief Executive of the Institute for Human Resource Professionals, states, “When you have very good well-being programs, you are attractive to an employee and are more likely to attract talent, especially the younger generations.” 

According to WHO, creating a healthy workplace requires including initiatives in four crucial areas—the physical work environment, psychological environment, personal health resources, and enterprise involvement in the community. Based on that, here are some specific duties of workplace wellbeing champions:

Provide resources and information: Create a centralized hub for employees to quickly get resources, articles, and information on various aspects of wellbeing, such as mental health support, fitness programs, and healthy eating.

Organizing wellness programs: Planning and implementing wellness challenges, such as step-count competitions, yoga sessions, or mindfulness programs to encourage physical activity and stress reduction. These programs reduce absenteeism by 14-19%, and 80% of employees claim to enjoy their work days when wellness programs are in place.

Facilitate open discussions: Create a safe space for colleagues to discuss their concerns, challenges, or ideas about well-being openly. This can be done through regular meetings, informal gatherings, and offering mental health days at work.

Mental health advocacy: a 2019 Cigna wellbeing survey revealed that a staggering 92% of employed respondents in Singapore were stressed, and 44% of them believe that their existing workplace programs did not address mental health. A sentiment that has only intensified in a post pandemic world. Running awareness campaigns on mental health, providing resources on coping strategies, and reducing the stigma around mental health support have become crucial in supporting employees.

Collaborate with relevant stakeholders: Collaborate with management, Human Resources, and other stakeholders to integrate well being into your overall organizational strategy. They may also collaborate with external partners, such as wellness experts or healthcare providers.

Collecting feedback and suggestions: Asking for feedback via surveys is another crucial area in enhancing your wellbeing initiatives. You can use this information to tailor programs and meet employees’ specific needs, helping to identify specific pain points within your organization.

While the role is often voluntary, wellbeing champions should have the time to attend meetings, organize events, and stay informed about relevant wellness topics.

Who can be a ‘Workplace Wellbeing Champion’?

Any employee within an organization who is passionate about promoting a positive work environment can become a workplace wellbeing champion. The role is typically voluntary, and individuals interested in their colleagues’ well-being often take on this responsibility.

However, according to Gan Siow Huang, the Minister of State for Manpower, “wellbeing champions are typically management level employees, who can rally senior management to implement policies to support employees’ mental wellbeing.”

Some characteristics and qualifications that make people well-suited to be workplace wellbeing champions include:

Passion for wellbeing: Wellbeing champions should genuinely care about the health and happiness of their colleagues. It isn’t just a title but a desire to walk people through their distressing times and lead them to better paths.

Good communicator: Wellbeing champions must communicate information about wellness initiatives, resources, and events to their colleagues effectively. Sometimes, people who need these initiatives the most need a little convincing to become a part of it. That’s where strong verbal and written communication skills would help.

Approachable and supportive: The wellbeing champion should be the first person colleagues turn to when they are in need of support. This ensures that seeking advice or discussing concerns isn’t difficult for those dealing with significant issues.

Enthusiastic and positive: A positive attitude can be contagious. Wellbeing champions who approach their role with optimism can motivate others to prioritize their own wellbeing. At the same time, champions should empathize with the challenges for providing meaningful support and guidance.

Respect for privacy: Wellbeing champions deal with sensitive information related to the health and wellbeing of their colleagues. They must prioritize privacy and maintain confidentiality to create a safe space. To ensure employees share the needed information, asking the right question becomes essential. Prepare a list of employee satisfaction survey questions that equally focus on job satisfaction, work environment, communication, work-life balance, and professional development.

wellbeing champions

What is Singapore’s Workplace Wellbeing Champions Network?

The Wellbeing Champions Network is Singapore’s largest network for workplace mental health and wellbeing, supported by the Tripartite Alliance Limited. They focus on three things— feeling well, functioning well, and connecting well, providing a 360-degree wellbeing experience.

  • Feeling well focuses on both physical and emotional wellbeing. It includes breathing techniques for better awareness, incorporating physical movements in the busy work schedule, focusing on emotional intelligence, and creating a sense of belongingness in the workplace community.
  • Functioning well focuses on creating a sense of work fulfillment, which remains extremely important to bring the best out of employees. It includes boosting skills and opening the mind to new ideas and experiences to lead employees in the right direction
  • Connecting well helps in strengthening the relationship with the community and the environment. It focuses on contributing to others in both small and large ways and adding value to life by building meaningful relationships.

Comprising 50 founding members from renowned organizations, the Wellbeing Champions Network aims to create a safe space and culture of sharing without the fear of discrimination.

The network was formed based on research showing that a significant number of employees fail to deal with work demands and pressures. These employees took a lot of medical leave and were prone to accidents much more than other employees. So, focusing on mental wellbeing became critical for both productivity and safety.

So, as part of Singapore’s National Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2023, employers are recommended to have wellbeing champions within their teams. However, the concept of workplace wellbeing is new. That’s where a community-based approach via the network could help, as you can learn from experiences and expert insights.

The whole idea of Singapore’s Workplace Wellbeing Champions Network is to create a unified and collaborative space where every employee is heard, seen, and respected for their issues, big or small.

How to Join the Workplace Wellbeing Champions Network?

Joining the workplace wellbeing champions network is free, and champions and other nominated employees can join the network with no fee. All you need to do is email Kaleidoscope Labs at hello@kaleidoscope.sg, the official vendor appointed by the Workplace Safety and Health Council.

The Expansion of Tripartite Advisory on Mental Health

The subject of mental health has long been somewhat of a taboo in Singapore as Singaporean society believes in hard work and resilience. However, we observed a significant shift after COVID-19 with a growing emphasis shifted to the importance of mental health and wellbeing in the workplace.

The Tripartite Advisory on Mental Health was then launched in 2020 to provide employers with knowledge and skills to better support their employees’ mental health and well-being. The initiative collaborates with the government, employers, and workers’ unions.

In 2023, the Tripartite Advisory was expanded to include new measures such as the Workplace Wellbeing Champions Network. The network successfully connected individuals dedicated to promoting well-being practices in the workplace.

The Advisory also included new measures to eliminate stigmas and implement a peer support system of trained staff to create a supportive and positive work environment. We also observed an increased focus on hiring individuals with mental health conditions to create a more inclusive workplace.

Empowering Teams for Health and Wellbeing

The Workplace Wellbeing Champions Network has numerous benefits for your employees and organization. It’s important to emphasize the benefits, showcase their positive impact, and create a compelling narrative around the initiative to facilitate stakeholder and employee buy-in.

To empower more employees to join the network, focus on conveying personal benefits such as enhanced leadership skills, increased job satisfaction, and the opportunity to positively impact workplace culture. You can also provide examples of successful wellness programs and initiatives within the organization or from other companies.

Read next: Practical Approaches to Identify and Tackle Employee Burnout Signs

Remember that the key is to personalize your communication and tailor your approach to your organization’s unique characteristics and culture.

How Omni Supports Singapore Businesses

Localized payroll

Manual payroll is made easier with tools like our payslip template Singapore. For companies at risk of common errors such as miscalculations, typos, and missed deadlines, automating your payroll with Omni offers a comprehensive payroll solution tailored to Singapore’s specific requirements. With features like support for SGD, automated tax calculations, and managed CPF contributions, Omni can help HR teams simplify their payroll processing and ensure compliance with ease.

With automated payroll outsourcing services, digitized and secure payslip distribution and records keeping, and dedicated support teams to guide your team and ensure compliance, Omni’s payroll processing reduces common payroll errors as well as the administrative burden of your HR team and frees up valuable time to dedicate to more impactful business processes.

Documents and visa management

E Pass salaries and other regulatory changes are a common reality for Singapore businesses, technology can help manage the various documents and E Pass salary requirements needed to support your foreign talent.

Omni allows your organization to securely and centrally manage employee information such as proof of qualifications and written consent necessary to obtain a Singapore E Pass. Our employee-portal makes it easy for employee’s to upload and update their information, centralizing critical information such as E Pass numbers, expiry dates, and renewal reminders, helping ensure your E Pass management meets the regulations set by the Singapore government.

Benefits administration

Omni’s time off management capabilities help managers and HR teams swiftly navigate employee leave management, promoting wellbeing and work-life balance. Omni’s platform allows you to approve leave applications on the go and keep track of who’s in and out of the office with at-a-glance scheduling.

Our employee self-service portal empowers employees to submit their time off requests, which automatically routes to the appropriate manager thanks to customizable approval workflows. With automated calculations, employees and managers can easily view leave balances in real-time, and track how many vacation days they have left without having to go through HR.

Our localized solutions and inter-connected system integrates your leave management efforts with payroll processing, facilitating automatic, accurate calculations and compliance with local regulations for various regions.

Get started today!

Get a 14-day free trial and see how Omni can work for your business.