4,600 OCBC junior staff in S’pore will receive S$1,000 each to help with cost of living

4,600 OCBC junior staff in S'pore will receive S$1,000 each to help with cost of living

OCBC Bank to give around S$9 million to junior employees in one-off payment

OCBC Bank said on Tuesday (20 Feb) that it will give nearly 14,000 junior staff — including 4,600 in Singapore — S$1,000 each.

This works out to around S$9 million in total.

Junior employees make up more than 40% of the group’s overall headcount in its 19 markets.

Source: Reuters

This follows a similar move by DBS Bank, which gave a one-time bonus amounting to S$15 million to staff. DBS was the first bank to introduce such an initiative.

A spokesperson told MS News that DBS has committed S$1,000 for each junior employee as part of the one-time bonus.

Last October, the National Wages Council had recommended that employers help employees with rising costs beyond support from the government.

OCBC junior staff will receive S$1,000 each

Eligible staff, which includes new entrants and unionised employees, will receive their payout between February to March 2024.

In a statement, OCBC Bank said that the 4,600 recipients make up about 40% of the total headcount based here.

Source: @krisprovoost on Instagram

Core inflation in Singapore — which excludes accommodation and private transport costs —  is expected to decrease more gradually only towards the last quarter of 2024.

OCBC Bank noted that the National Wages Council had recommended in October 2023 that companies help employees cope with rising costs beyond support from the government.

The NWC had recommended a one-off assistance payment “with a focus on lower to middle-income employees”, among other measures.

“For employees outside Singapore, the one-off support takes into consideration the respective local market conditions,” the bank noted.

Bank hopes that support will help defray costs

OCBC Bank added that it regularly reviews its employees’ built-in wage increases and variable payments.

This is to ensure that they are commensurate with the bank’s performance and employees’ contribution, it said.

“The amount, for each of the 14,000 who will benefit, may not be large,” said OCBC head of group human resources Lee Hwee Boon. “However, we hope that this can help colleagues defray concerns on the rising cost of living.”

Ms Lee also said the long-term solution is to empower colleagues to take charge of their own financial well-being through good financial planning amidst inflationary pressures.

The bank has highlighted a range of relevant resources such as articles, tools, virtual talks, and regular workshops that can help with this.

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Featured image adapted from Bloomberg.

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