The issue of security guards' wages and job perks could be addressed by reverting to the system of having in-house guards ("Wage plan for security guards by Oct"; Aug 27).
Under this system, the guards would be directly employed and supervised by the organisations requiring their services.
Most of them would prefer to work directly for the organisations rather than via security agencies.
Under the current system, security firms bid for contracts, and the successful bidders will not pass on the entire amount they receive from clients to the guards on their payroll, as they have to set aside a certain portion for profits and to cover expenses.
By eliminating the middlemen - the security firms - the clients can engage the security guards directly, and give them better salaries and work benefits. They can also supervise the guards better.
For their part, the guards will be motivated to do their jobs better, since they are receiving higher wages and better perks.
Clients can use the money saved to employ more guards and implement eight-hour shifts, instead of the current 12-hour cycle, which would mean more alert guards and more family time for them.
It would be a win-win arrangement for the clients and guards.
This article was published on Sept 4 in The Straits Times.
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