Monday, April 25, 2011

Foreign workers can help to create how many jobs?

My wife and I are quite different in terms of our thinking and sometimes, our debates and discussions can have very interesting outcomes. We were discussing about the workers that are hired by IM Flash in Singapore.

According to IM Flash Singapore, they are employing 1,200 workers, of which six in 10 are Singaporeans and permanent residents, while four in 10 are foreigners. In the technician and manufacturing jobs, two-thirds are foreign workers, but in the managerial and professional positions, two-thirds are Singaporeans and permanent residents.

However, the question is how many managers and professional positions can there be in a company? If you're talking about a highly efficient company that also uses automation in its work, I won't be surprised if the ratio of managers to employees can be about 1:15. Seriously, I would think the ratio would be higher for a high-tech company such as IM Flash, but I'm also taking into account professionals.

Let's say we're using the above ratio, that means there would be about 80 managers/professional positions among the 1,200 people, of which only about 54 are Singaporeans and permanent residents. How many of the 54 are Singaporeans, and not permanent residents? What is the breakdown of the 720 Singaporeans and permanent residents being employed? I find it quite hard to believe that many are Singaporeans, especially in the technician and manufacturing jobs as we have been producing many graduates.

Without the actual numbers, I can only use assumptions and I don't think my assumptions are that far off. After all, how many managers will such a high-tech company need?


Anonymous said...

Hi, the statistic & ratio for IM Flash Singapore is true due to all engineers, accountant, analyst & executive (whether direct or indirect employees) are categorized under professionals.

For your information out of 1,200 employees at IM Flash Singapore, there are around 570 professionals (430 are Engineers) & around 110 managers.... these number have make up 57%.

For you further information, in a High Tech industry like IM Flash Singapore, they required more engineers compared to technician or supporting staff, therefore please don't make your own judgement & assumptions without knowing the need of the industry.

chantc said...

Hi, thank you for your information. Like what I've indicated clearly in my post, I'm assuming because the article which I read decided to give me a maths question where I have to try to derive by myself the actual figures. It's good to know that IM Flash uses more engineers than technician.

With your provided numbers for managers/professionals(your numbers do not add up to 570 by the way but I will still use it), that would mean that around 380 people are Singaporeans and permanent residents. That will be quite substantial for the engineering graduates if a number of such companies setup shop here.

If these numbers have been produced in the first place, I would not need to assume in the first place. Anyway, thanks for providing the numbers and adding visibility to this topic.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I fully concur with what "anonymous" had said. Just to add on as I chance upon this post,

1. Indeed, there are alot of professional positions and less of the technician positions in this high tech industry. So what is more important is that singaporeans are able to get the white collar positions.

2. And you seem to be very concerned about the PRs. In the professional positions in IM Flash Singapore, I do see alot of true blue singaporeans and not PRs. And by that, I do not just mean the engineers but also for managerial positions. The managing director IS a singaporean.

3. IM Flash Singapore is a relatively new company that is still in the start-up phase. There is a need for technology transfer from its counterpart in IM Flash Technologies in Utah. Thus, a number of positions are currently occupied by foreigners from the sister company. After this phase, they will return back to Utah and the ratio of foreigners will decrease.

4. It does not mean that if companies that employ singaporeans set up here, the engineering graduates would have more opportunity. In fact, there is a stigma about semiconductor industries and many of the fresh graduates abhor joining this industry. they would prefer industries that allow them to earn big bucks and without the ups and downsof the semicon industry. Thus, what is more important is to change the mindset of these fresh graduates.

chantc said...

Hi, as I've stated in my 1st reply to the comment, if the numbers are correct then I agree that such companies in Singapore is beneficial to all.

I've nothing against PRs as many of my good friends are PRs and even friends on employment pass. However, I do not like the way percentages are thrown about instead of using actual numbers. This somehow sends a message (at least to me) that someone is trying to hide something.

Refer back to my previous comment on my views.

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