- 26 January 2019, Friday - The National Taxi Association (NTA), HDT Singapore Taxi (HDT) and NTUC’s e2i (Employment and Employability Institute) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to help full-time taxi drivers who are employees of HDT, keep up with digital transformation and additionally, help them with career progression. The key terms under the MOU include:
All HDT full-time taxi drivers who are employees of HDT, to become members of NTA
- Membership fees will be borne by HDT
- NTA will be able to take care of the interests of these taxi drivers
800 full-time HDT taxi drivers in the next five years will go through SkillsFuture for Digital Workplace (SFDW) training
- NTA and HDT will co-pay the required training fees, and will work with NTUC LearningHub as the key training provider for the relevant SFDW courses
- This collaboration applies to an expected workforce of 800 in the next five years.
Clearer career path for taxi drivers
- Experienced taxi drivers can be “promoted” to take on the role as a mentor to help new drivers
Working with Partners
- This announcement was made at a HDT recruitment fair for taxi drivers. HDT is the first taxi operator to provide taxi drivers with full-employment terms and benefits. Under the Taxi Service Operator’s Licence from the Land Transport Authority, HDT can operate up to 800 taxis or more, and is thus planning to hire up to 800 taxi drivers in the next five years.
- In order to attract and retain taxi drivers, HDT, NTA and e2i will continue to work closely to help HDT’s taxi drivers keep up with digital transformation, and provide them with opportunities to earn more and lead better lives. An existing collaboration is the Place-and-Train programme, which includes a work-trial stint and on-the-job training. During the work trial period, drivers are given 80 hours to get a sense of what it is like to drive an electric car. Potential hires are paid on an hourly basis at a rate of about $7.50 an hour. Since the programme started in 2017, more than 80 drivers have gone on the programme and successfully converted to being full-time drivers of HDT. With the signing of MOU, the partners are committed to do more.
- Executive Advisor of the National Taxi Association Ang Hin Kee shared, “While traditional self-employed taxi drivers are often left to manage challenges at work or at home on their own, HDT’s taxi drivers have the full support of their employer. We are happy to work closely with our partners to better take care of the needs of our drivers. In very apparent ways, taxi drivers have to keep up with digital transformation and find ￼new ways to earn more. We hope to help them with training so that they can keep up with changes. More importantly, having clear career options will entice them to skill up so that they can move up in their roles,” said Mr Ang Hin Kee, Executive Advisor of NTA.
- Managing Director of HDT Singapore Taxi Pte Ltd James Ng said: “HDT Taxis is
making every effort to ensure that our drivers receive the best training and support so that they will deliver a high quality of service to our customers each and every time. This MOU with NTA and e2i, will take us another step forward, to provide an even better environment to support and encourage our drivers so that they can serve with HDT, knowing that they will have good career prospects, as they constantly seek to upgrade their skills.”
- Chief Executive Officer, Mr Gilbert Tan, shared, “We are committed to work with HDT Taxi Singapore and beyond for the taxi industry to ease drivers in the acquisition of new skill sets needed in this digital economy. With the growing adoption of electric vehicles, e2i is prepared to work with the industry to upskill workers so as to stay relevant amidst new technologies.”
- HDT Recruitment Executive Wong King Foon, who had initially joined the company as a taxi driver, said: “I was retrenched a few years ago and decided to become a taxi driver with HDT. It was my first attempt to drive a taxi and I had to undergo training, and HDT’s offer of full employment with staff benefits and privileges were attractive to me. The promise of a steady income and career progression gave me peace of mind, and my family felt assured too. The company has provided a good working environment to train and equip us with the relevant skills to do our job well, and delight our customers. I am also pleased that HDT has recognised my job performance and contribution to the company, and has since promoted me to become a Recruitment Executive in the organisation.”