SINGAPORE Airlines (SIA), SIA Engineering, Scoot and SATS are planning to send 17,500 staff members for training as most flights remain suspended amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
At a closed-door dialogue session with NTUC secretary-general Ng Chee Meng on 3rd April, the four companies took the decision. The announcement comes after a training and support package for the aviation sector was announced in Budget 2020.
In all, 1,900 crew members - representing over three-quarters of the airline's total workforce - are expected to complete the course in the coming months, shared NTUC.
Out of the four companies, Scoot has already sent 23 of its flight and cabin crew members for a home-based learning course to develop their awareness of emerging technologies and build confidence in using technology. On the other hand, NTUC had committed that this will translate to a total of over 39,500 days of training for aviation workers.
NTUC further added that it is rapidly increasing its training capacity and leveraging virtual live classes for the NTUC LearningHub to meet demand from various sectors. It has already curated a series of courses for the aviation sector, with topics such as mindset change, service, technology and data. In the future, there would also be courses around change management, project management, technical training and service excellence-related courses.
When most of the operations are closed and flights are suspended due to COVID-19 pandemic, investing time and efforts in learning and building new skills is a good way to utilize time. The four companies of Singapore here are leading by example on how companies can utilize the time of crisis and prepare the staff for the future.
Besides learning amid crisis, since the middle of last week, about 500 aviation workers have signed up to be referred to temporary work assignments to augment their income. Its aerospace and aviation cluster is currently working with aviation companies to send staff for job interviews.
Additionally, Singapore Airlines is enabling its staff take up roles such as SG Clean ambassadors and safe distancing ambassadors, while several Scoot crew members have taken on jobs to help manage crowd control and conduct temperature screening at NTUC Enterprise's real estate subsidiary, Mercatus Co-operative.
These measures show how companies don't necessarily have to resort to measures like layoffs. There are many ways in which employees can be prepared for other roles or the time can be utilised to learn and build new skills. So that when the crisis is over, the staff is more ready than ever to help the businesses recover and lead them towards more growth.