Singapore Leave Eligibility and Entitlements

In Singapore, there are many types of leaves. From annual vacation leave, to sick leave, to childcare leave. The types are as follows:

  • Adoption Leave
  • Annual Leave
  • Childcare Leave
  • Maternity Leave
  • Paternity Leave
  • Shared Parental Leave
  • Sick Leave
  • Unpaid Infant Care Leave

You can see the breakdown of these leaves on the Singapore Ministry of Manpower website.

If you are looking for a tool that helps you manage your Singapore employees leave requests, balance and pay. Check out PayrollHero.sg or contact us at sales@payrollhero.com.

 

 

Video: PayrollHero Leave Management in Action

We have been fielding questions from people wanting to see our new Leave Management app in action. Below is a quick video showcasing how the first version of it works. Let us know what you think and if you have any questions, feel free to reach out – sales@payrollhero.com

PayrollHero’s Leave Management is available for purchase on;

  • All Singapore PayrollHero accounts
  • All Philippine PayrollHero accounts
  • All International TAS accounts

Restaurant Executive: Ben Lee, CEO of Sarnies

In 2015 we started doing interviews with restaurant, retail and BPO entrepreneurs to learn more about their businesses, how they make decisions and what’s next for them. These interviews have been quite a success and we plan to continue them into 2016.

First up this year is Ben Lee, the CEO of Sarnies.

“Started a few years ago by Aussie Ben Lee, Sarnies is a pumpin’ little café located in the bustling CBD. Here at Sarnies, we are passionate about our products and their quality. Grass fed beef; chicken free from hormones and antibiotics; bacon cured in-house – all so that you’re guaranteed a fantastic meal every time.

‘Sarnies’ may be slang for sandwich, but we’re much more than that. We serve up hearty breakfasts; gourmet sandwiches; massive salads, homemade bakery treats and a damn good cuppa.” (sarniescafe.com)

Sarnies Coffee

1. Where are you from and what brought you Singapore?
I am originally from Australia and was brought here via a job in my previous life working in a bank.

2. How many restaurants do you currently run?
Four in Singapore with four soon to be opened in Malaysia and one soon to be opened in Thailand.

3. Which one was the first?
Sarnies Cafe on Telok Ayer Street (136 Telok Ayer Street Singapore 068601)

4. What do you like about doing business in Singapore?
For me its a good mix of familiarity and new opportunities to discover. It has been a great entry into Asia for us.

5. What are the challenges for doing business in Singapore?
The tightest labour market in all of history.

6. What advice would you give a business person moving into Singapore, that you wish you knew before moving to the country?
Given it’s the lowest barrier to entry of any city in Asia, competition is fierce in the restaurant game. There’s a lot of good stuff here.

7. How do you choose locations for your businesses?
We go for busy working areas where people don’t have to move very far to get their coffee. And the smaller the footprint the better to keep the rental low.

Continue reading

5 Things Business Owners Need to Know About Payroll in Singapore

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Payroll in general can be quite confusing. In Singapore, there is the added task of ethnic-based levies.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind while generating payroll and paying contributions to the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore:

Contributions and Levies:

Singapore’s social security is paid out by the Central Provident Fund. Every working Singaporean or Singapore Permanent Resident contributes to the fund along with his/her employer. There are four accounts within the fund that can be accessed at different point of an employee’s life.

There are additional levies: Foreign Workers’ Levy, Skills Development Levy and the Ethnic funds (there are four accounts within the ethnic fund). The levies are paid out of the employees’ salaries. Employees may choose to opt out of the levies by signing the relevant forms.

The contribution and levies need to be paid every month. We have a more detailed post about this here.

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Taxes

Employers need to complete a tax clearance form for any non-Singaporean (foreigner or Singapore Permanent Resident) that

  1. ceases to work in the firm,
  2. will be sent on an overseas posting or
  3. is leaving Singapore for a period of over three months.

The purpose of the tax clearance is to ensure that PRs and foreigners have paid their taxes before leaving the country. The employee’s salary/bonus/OT payment may only be disbursed after their tax clearance form has been approved by the government.

Form IR21 needs to be submitted a month before any of the above possibilities occur. Failure to notify the government can lead to fines up to $1000. For more information on tax clearance, this is the link.

Hiring Employees:

The Singapore Employment Act is a statute that covers everything you need to know about hiring employees.

Some things to keep in mind are: Singapore does not have a minimum wage. The wage is settled through negotiations between the employee and employer. There are market rates for positions: for example this is a summary of restaurant wages in Singapore.

Another important distinction is between a full time and part time worker. A full time employee works a minimum of 44 hours a week. Anything less than that is considered a part time job. Part time workers have their own set of rules when it comes to leave, hourly rate, over time.

All the information you need about part time work is provided here.

Income Reporting

The Auto Inclusion Scheme requires employers with over 15 employees to file their employees’ income information before the 15th of March every year. The filing can be done electronically. A total of four forms need to be filled:

  1. Form IR8A – for all employees
  2. Appendix 8A – for payment of benefits-in-kind
  3. Appendix 8B – for gains from employee stock options
  4. Form IR8S – if excess CPF payments were made

Employee Records

Since March 2008, the government requires firms to keep a record of all its employees, their income and contribution payments to the IRAS for the last 5 years.

Learn More About Payroll

If you want to learn more about payroll in Singapore, visit our website and get in touch with us. We’d love to chat with you!

Recap: SheSays Singapore Event

Screen Shot 2016-01-30 at 6.10.20 PMI had the pleasure of sitting on a panel at the latest SheSays Singapore event held at the amazing co-working space, JustCo.

The women’s only event was called – Make It Happen: Your Career – and was standing room only. The event was described as “Whatever stage you are in, job hunting, changing industries, looking for growth opportunities at work or wanting to finally take the plunge into building your own business, you want solutions and you want clarity. If you’re looking for direction, guidance and an answer to – “What do I do next?”, this session is for you!

Screen Shot 2016-01-30 at 6.09.44 PMThere were four panelists including myself. The other three were;

Mina Lee – Former Chief of Staff at Xiaome
Mina Lee was most recently Chief of Staff for Xiaomi Southeast Asia, helping them set up and expand in the region and was Acting GM of Xiaomi Indonesia.

Andrea Edwards, Director of Content Marketing & Training at Novus Media
Andrea is a globally award-winning communications professional with more than 20 years’ experience working all over the world, including 12 years in Asia Pacific.

Stanimira Koleva, Senior Vice President at Software AG
Stanimira, oversees the business of Software AG in the region of Asia Pacific and Japan. She joined Software AG as Senior Vice President in July 2015.

The event was a success, with lots of questions from the room and the moderators about career paths, finding your vision, personal branding, social media, and constant learning. Meera Jane Navaratnam, one of the SheSays organizers in Singapore wrote a great recap of the event.

SheSays hosts events every month. Check out their Facebook page for details of their next one if you are interested in attending.

If you are looking for a new role, we are always hiring. Join us!

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Announcing Leave Management by PayrollHero

We’re excited to unveil the new Leave Management app for PayrollHero. We have been working on this added functionality for the last few months and are excited to launch it to the world.

Want to learn more about pricing, full feature set and how you can add it to your account? Contact us at sales@payrollhero.com for more details.

Apply for Leave

Within the Leave Management platform, employees can apply for days off by selecting the dates they want, the type of leave that it is (sick, vacation, etc) and the reason for the leave.

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Leave Balances

Managers can log in and see their subordinates leave types and how many leaves they have left. This is also where a manager can edit the number of leaves per employee.

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My Leave History

Employees can view their leave history quickly and easily by clicking on My Leave History. Within this page, employees can view their past leaves, if they were approved or declined and the type of leave.

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Reject Leave Requests

Managers can reject employee leave requests through the upcoming leave page. Within this page it shows leave requests with the pertinent details. Managers can reject the leave request and include a note as to why.

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Reach out to us at sales@payrollhero.com to learn more!

Or check out our websites here to know more about PayrollHero: Philippines, Singapore or Global.

Why Assuming Payroll Is A Big Mistake

What is assuming payroll? Does your company do it? How much does it cost you?

Assuming Payroll

Assuming payroll is a term we use when a company pays employees in advance of the completed pay period, assuming the employee will make it to work between payment and actual calculation of payroll.

For example, Wayne Enterprises pays Bruce a whole month’s salary on January 25 assuming that Bruce will work the next five days. On January 27, Bruce had an emergency situation which led to him missing work. Since he already had been paid, Wayne Enterprises will have to deduct his salary in the next month, to make up for him missing work.

Why is it done?

Since this is clearly a complex way of paying employees, why is it done? Firstly, it gave companies time to go through the tedious calculations for generating payroll. Secondly, back in the day when Wayne Enterprises handed cheques to its employees, Bruce had to go down to the bank and cash it in. Since all companies paid their employees at the end of the month, employees would spend hours at the bank just to cash in a cheque. Paying them in advance solved the problem. The opportunity cost of deducting an employee’s salary next month was far lower than paying after generating payroll.

Today, in the twenty first century, that argument does not hold anymore. Wayne Enterprises uses GIRO and other electronic payment methods to pay its employees. The opportunity cost of deducting from the next month’s salary is now much higher.

Some companies still stick to the old way of doing payroll. When we dug a little deeper and asked our clients why they did it, they said it was because their board of directors had left the rule as it was made many years ago.

Let’s help fix the problem

Our client success head, Kieran Peppiatt, has seen through a number of companies changing their system of Assuming Payroll to the regular kind:

“Many of our customers have seen cost savings by changing from the assuming payroll method to the regular one. It’s more efficient, easier and more accurate.”

PayrollHero calculates deductions but we always advocate doing payroll the regular way. It eliminates any chance of inaccuracy and makes the payroll process smoother for your HR manager. When you have a high churn rate, it is even more important to adopt the regular method.

Download a one page Assuming Payroll info sheet below:

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Why You Shouldn’t Assume Payroll – PayrollHero

Embrace Technology, Grow Your Business

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At PayrollHero, we are always pushing for a tech enabled world for our clients. There are plenty of good things that come out of automating processes in your restaurant or retail business.

To name a few: it’s more efficient and saves time, which means there is a higher turnover of customers; there is less room for error; business owners spend less on manpower so overall costs go down.

All around the world we see a preference towards adopting technology. On one hand, it is because minimum wages are expected to rise (like in the US) while on the other hand, a shortage of labour supply is forcing business owners to adopt technology (like in Japan or Singapore).

All in all, the shift towards automation is inevitable. We thought it would be helpful to give you some tips on how to stay ahead of the curve.

Apps, apps, apps

We can’t stress on this enough. There is an app for everything today. Here is a non-exhaustive list on everything that you can safely outsource to an app:

  • Point of Sale Systems: Square is the most famous POS system. It works worldwide, which makes it easier for you to monitor sales if you run businesses in multiple countries
  • Loyalty apps: We’ve talked about Perx before. Loyalty apps help in bringing in more customers and increase foot traffic in your store.
  • Reservations: Chope is the rockstar of reservations in Southeast Asia. The Asian version of OpenTable runs in Hong Kong, Singapore and other countries in the regions, making it the perfect vendor for booking reservations in your restaurant.
  • Inventory Management: Another Southeast Asian favourite, Trade Gecko is your go-to app for managing inventory. With a clean and user-friendly interface, it takes very little for a business owner to realize that inventory management is a nightmare that is solved deftly by Trade Gecko.
  • Food Delivery: FoodPanda takes care of delivering food to your customers, while Slurp is another POS system that helps customers order food remotely. Slurp helps you take orders but doesn’t deliver food itself.

We have a whole other blogpost devoted towards these apps. You can check it out here.

Revamping the menu

Laminated menu cards are a thing of the past. Restaurants like Fish and Co. use tablets for their menus. With a few taps, your customer’s order goes straight to the kitchen. Tablet menus prevent errors in ordering. It is also much easier to change menus on a tablet than to print new menus each time you want to add a dish or change prices.

Feedback systems

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Does that little device look familiar to you? You have probably seen that at airports all over the world. For a feedback system, this one is pretty elementary but it does the trick. One look at it, and your immediate response would be to click on the button that reflects what you feel. It’s an instantaneous feedback loop that can be used by almost any business.

Food bloggers

This one is more of a marketing idea. While it is not really about automating your restaurant, it is about using technology to get your business out there. Tourist destinations, like Singapore, are big on food blogs for suggestions to restaurants.

Some of the famous bloggers have a huge following on Facebook and Instagram. The idea is to get these food bloggers to write a review on your restaurant and let social media take care of the rest. Of course, you need to be confident about getting a solid review!

We hope these ideas encourage you to embrace technology. There is no downside to adopting tech while the upside will result in cost minimization and big returns for your business. Let us know if you have any more suggestions!

Manila’s White Cross Orphanage

We try to visit the White Cross Children’s Home in Manila a few times a year. (even some of our clients have gone) It is an orphanage in San Juan, Philippines (right in Metro Manila) and houses anywhere from 80 – 120 kids in need of a temporary place to live or are up for adoption.

Before we go, we always call them to find out what they need. They are always in need of something and can use the support. We have written about White Cross a few times and we get inquires every few months from people finding our blog post and wanting to help so I figured I would put together a post that breaks it down.

1. What do they need? 

They gave us a list. It is always good to call in advance as sometimes they have different needs but this list is their general “always needed” items.

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2. Visits

The kids love visitors. The babies want to be held, the toddlers want to play, they are eager to hang out and always a friendly group. The caregivers looking after them do a great job but there is not enough of them to go around. We have taken our team there a couple times or gone an visited with my wife and kids. If you have an hour or two, give them a call and pop in.

3. Adoption

Adoption in the Philippines is hard for foreigners, but can be done. For local Filipinos the process is a bit quicker. White Cross has lots of information about how it works if that is something your interested in.

Below is Paolo, on the right he was 6 months old (approx.) and on the left, 18 months old (approx.). He is one of the children looking for a place to permanently call home.

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To contact White Cross:

White Cross – 276 Santolan Road, San Juan City, Metro Manila
Tel: 721-2779
Email: whitecross1936@yahoo.com