Public Bus (Singapore Bus Academy)
The public bus industry has transited to the bus contracting model in order for the Government to respond more effectively to ridership changes and commuter needs. There are currently four public bus transport operators in the industry, SBS Transit, SMRT, Tower Transit and Go-Ahead Singapore. Career options have expanded and the pool of bus captains is expected to increase by 30% over the next five years1. To uplift and raise the professionalism of the careers in the bus industry, several enhancements have also been made to the employment terms, working conditions and career progression to meet the demands of the highly skilled job. These are encompassed in the Industry Manpower Plan (IMP) for the Public Bus industry, introduced since May 2016. The IMP aims to attract and retain local bus captains to develop the Singaporean core, and help them grow their careers to be future-ready.
1 New academy to raise skills and enhance training for bus captains, The Straits Times, 6 May 2016
How does e2i support the Public Bus industry?
- e2i organises various thematic job fairs for the public transport industry, including direct referrals to the public transport operators.
- To allow the public to better understand the career opportunities in the industry, e2i also collaborated with the public transport operators in job previews and on-site learning journeys at the bus depots. Participants would gain insights into the daily roles, responsibilities and competencies of being a bus professional.
Since 2009, e2i has supported the bus industry to attract, retain and grow the workforce. In response to the downturn back then, e2i has worked closely with affected companies to cut cost, minimise retrenchments, and help workers enter the Public Transport sector. Several employment and employability initiatives were also developed over the years to equip the workers with additional vocational and soft skill-sets to deepen their competencies and grow in their careers.
- Place–and-Train programme for Public Transport Engineers and Bus Captains.
- Development of the Singapore’s first Bus Training and Evaluation Centre (BTEC) with SMRT Buses and NTWU, leveraging on simulated and integrated training to up-skill bus drivers for careers beyond driving.
- Singapore Bus Academy.
An anchor initiative of the Industry Manpower Plan, the SGBA was launched on 17 October 2016, as a centralised academy to offer enhanced training to all bus professionals.
SGBA has introduced a 5-day Enhanced Vocational Licence Training Programme to standardise the foundational training that all new public bus captains undergo.
Apart from the foundational training, SGBA also offers courses for the various job roles in the bus sector to equip one with the necessary skills and knowledge to enhance capability development for the Public Transport Industry.
Introduced in 2018, the Certification for Technical Specialist (Bus) is a joint certification by the SGBA and the Institution of Engineers Singapore (IES) to professionalise the bus maintenance sector. With more operators entering the sector under the bus contracting model, CTS promotes industry-wide recognition and benchmark of technicians’ competencies. Employers can easily acknowledge individual’s technical expertise, while certified technical specialist can be recognized and valued for their skills.