SP Group to spend $35m and work with union on skills training for all 3,600 staff

SINGAPORE - Energy utilities provider SP Group will spend $35 million in the next three years to upgrade the skills of all its 3,600 staff, working with a union to identify relevant programmes as the energy sector faces digitalisation and rising customer expectations.

This will be done via a company training committee set up by SP Group and the Union of Power and Gas Employees (UPAGE), with the two organisations formalising arrangements by signing an agreement on Wednesday (Nov 20).

SP Group's committee is the third to be set up by UPAGE and energy companies in recent weeks, following similar agreements with YTL PowerSeraya and City Gas.

The training committee, comprising union and company management representatives, will identify skills gaps and suitable courses for workers so that they can take on new or transformed jobs.

In a joint statement, SP Group and the union said workers will be able to further develop competencies in the areas of customer service, cybersecurity, data analytics, safety and skills for a digital workplace.

The two organisations have collaborated since January 2018 to train some 2,800 staff, even before the arrangement was formalised.

UPAGE general secretary Abdul Samad Abdul Wahab, who is a principal technical officer at SP Group, encouraged workers to go for training.

"Let's not be afraid to adapt, embrace and adopt the various technologies and use it in our daily jobs just like we are in our daily lives," he said, speaking to about 200 company and union representatives at the event to formalise the arrangement held at SP Group's headquarters near Kallang.

Mr Abdul Samad added that a number of those who had attended training sessions have seen their salaries rise by 8 per cent to 20 per cent.


National Trades Union Congress secretary-general Ng Chee Meng, who witnessed the signing of the agreement, said as part of efforts to speed up the formation of more company training committees, union leaders will go for training programmes in areas such as business process modelling, performance and rewards management and digitalisation.

NTUC is also building a pool of industry training officers to further support the roll out of company training committees, he said.

NTUC aims to have 1,000 such committees over the next three years. So far, over 60 have been set up across industries such as manufacturing, lifestyle and the public sector.