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May 16, 2023

You have been asked to give advice to the management of a large family-owned I.T. business in Singapore providing technical support to small businesses. The organization has grown rapidly in size over the past five years and previously good relationships with staff have become strained. Management has noticed an increase in staff turnover and short-term sickness absences over the past year.

The organization offers a competitive salary and there seems to be no problem in recruiting employees, but the problem is getting them to stay. Exit interviews suggest that employees do not feel listened to and as such have little influence over decisions that affect them. A year ago, the management team undertook an employee satisfaction survey and there was a good return rate for this. Employees seemed keen to raise a number of issues. A Significant number of respondents referred to the following:

  1. In some areas, there seemed to be problems with employees not getting on well with their supervisors, and commenting on favoritism in the allocation of work and approval of requests for time-off
  2. Staff is unhappy that there are few procedures covering working practices, resulting in arbitrary management decision-making.
  3. Staff feels that management should recognize a trade union so that more decisions can be jointly made and are more equitable.
  4. The need to establish appropriate mechanisms to resolve both individual and collective conflict at work.c
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