If you are considering working part-time in Singapore or already holding a Singapore part time job then it’s advisable to know your employment rights. As a part-time employee, you may be covered under the Employment Act.
This Act sets minimum standards for all employment contracts, including part-time jobs employee contracts. It defines who is covered under the Act, who is considered a Singapore part time job employee, entitlements to rest days, holidays and other leave including maternity leave, sick days and annual leave. It also sets out how pay should be calculated.
Here is a brief snapshot of the important legal rights you should know if you are considering a part time job in Singapore.
The Act covers all employees who work in Singapore, regardless of their nationality, that work under an employment contract with an employer. It also covers those who work part-time.
The Act does not include all employees. It excludes managers and executives whose salary is more than $4,500 a month, seafarers, domestic employees and those people employed by the Government or the Statutory Board.
The exclusions can also apply to professionals who have tertiary education with specialised knowledge and skills and who carry out the same or similar responsibilities to managers or executives, such as lawyers, doctors, dentists or accountants.
A part time job employee in Singapore is anyone who works less than 35 hours a week but does not include managers and executives earning more than $4500 a month, seafarers and domestic employees.
It is highly advisable to have an employment contract in Singapore to ensure you are covered and protected under the Act.
The employment contract must include: your basic hourly rate; your gross pay, the amount of each allowance that must be separately itemised; the number of working hours for a day or a week; and the number of work days for a week or a month.
Your employment contract has to meet the minimum requirements under the Act, and cannot be less than the conditions stipulated under the Act.
You should also know there is no minimum part time job wage in Singapore. The wage is set by market forces and is negotiated between the employer and the employee under the terms of your employment contract.
In addition, you should ensure your employment contract covers the following areas: sick leave; annual holidays; public holidays; rest days; overtime; maternity and childcare leave; health insurance; Central Provident Fund Contributions;
probation period; and termination.
Your basic rate of pay includes your wages, any adjustments and increments, but it excludes any of your allowances. Remember, there is no set minimum pay rate in Singapore, so it is up to you to negotiate this with your employer.
Before you negotiate the rate of pay, you should check to see what other people are getting for the same or similar part time job. You can do this by asking someone working in that industry, if there are any unions or bodies who can advise you of what the market rate is, checking the local job advertisements and speaking to recruiters.
Your gross rate of pay does include your allowances but it excludes travel, food or housing. It also doesn’t include overtime, bonuses, any annual supplements to your wages and incentives. Again, it pays to do some research to see what employees doing the same or similar job get as a gross rate of pay.
If your employer wants you to work more than 5 days a week then you are entitled to a rest day.
If you ask your employer to work on your rest day then you should be paid accordingly.
The rate of pay for a rest day is worked out by a formulae that is set out in the Act. These calculations can be found at The Ministry of Manpower’s website: http://www.mom.gov.sg/employment-practices/part-time-employment/Pages/default.aspx.
Under the Employment Act as a part-time employee in Singapore you are entitled to be paid for any overtime work you do.
The rate of pay for overtime is also worked out by a formulae, which can also be found at The Ministry of Manpower’s website: http://www.mom.gov.sg/employment-practices/part-time-employment/Pages/default.aspx.
As a part-time employee in Singapore, you are also entitled to paid public holidays. The rate of pay is calculated on a pro-rata basis based on the number of hours you work.
However, if your employer wants you to work on a public holiday you are entitled to be paid for the work you do. The calculation is as follows: your basic rate of pay of one days’s work; the amount entitled to for a public holiday; and one day’s travel allowance if payable to you under your employment contract.
As a part time job employee you are entitled to annual leave once you have completed three months of service. Your annual leave is calculated on a pro-rata basis.
If you are a female employee and work part-time, you are entitled to maternity leave.
All part time job employees are entitled to child care leave based on a pro-rata basis.
Working part-time also means you are entitled to sick leave. You must have worked with your employer for at least three months. In addition, you must have told or attempted to tell him or her within 48 hours of you not coming in that you won’t be in because you are sick. You need to have your sick leave certified by the company’s doctor or a government doctor, or one from an approved public medical institution.
You should also know that if you are a Singapore resident or citizen and work part-time, your employer must pay into a Central Provident Fund.
There is no legislated notice termination period under the Act. You or your employer may terminate employment in writing or by your employer paying you a salary in lieu of notice. The notice period will depend on the terms under your employment contract.
So, that is a brief snapshot of your legal rights as a part-time employee in Singapore.
If you would like more information about working part-time in Singapore then here are some useful links:
1. Employment Act (Chapter 91, Section 66B) Employment (Part-Time Employees) Regulations at:
2. The Ministry of Manpower at: http://www.mom.gov.sg/employment-practices/part-time-employment/Pages/default.aspx