Give the people sector a leg up

Human resources is one of our key assets.

Whether it is politics, business, education, or whichever important pillar of our society, Singapore's continued success has to be people-focused ("To get our politics right, get the people sector right"; last Sunday).

For the past 13 years, I have been supporting outplaced professionals from the business sector.

One common thread is that most senior-level professionals prefer to find another job in the corporate sector.

I acknowledge that most of us prefer doing something we have been successful in and are comfortable doing.

Income level also plays a key part.

Those who are already financially secure will be somewhat more receptive to exploring options outside the corporate world - and this typically means leadership roles in not-for-profit organisations, as these tend to come with lower salaries. However, these remain the least attractive options.

Much can be done to try changing the current situation.

I echo managing editor Han Fook Kwang's view on according due recognition to the people sector, and one way is via the media.

There should be regular write-ups on personalities in this sector, especially those who have successfully made the transition to it.

Also, more public funds should be allocated to this sector.

Many not-for-profit organisations continue to face the challenge of raising funds to augment government handouts.

Lastly, the National Council of Social Service must revise its salary guidelines for this sector.

Many organisations use these guidelines, and are unable to attract the appropriate talent to join them.

Paul Heng

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