Former Tampines Regional Library now a MINDEF satellite office for employees to work near home

Tampines Regional Library turned into MINDEF ‘work-near-home’ facility

Singapore’s Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) has transformed the former Tampines Regional Library into an accessible satellite office facility.

As part of its “work-near-home” scheme, M-Works, MINDEF and Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) employees will be able to utilise the facility’s relevant networks and systems, which they cannot access at home due to security reasons.

The Tampines office is the fourth of its kind.

Tampines facility will assist employees

In a statement to MS News, MINDEF said that the initiative benefits employees who would like to work close to their homes.

At the same time, it reduces commuting time for employees and provides them with a conducive environment to work after attending meetings in the east.

According to The Straits Times (ST), the 100-seater office includes newly refurbished amenities such as:

  • Individual work stations
  • Quiet pods for calls
  • Four-seat work booths
  • Private discussion rooms with a capacity of four to six people
  • Enclosed meeting rooms with a capacity of 10 to 20 people
  • Large tables to facilitate team discussions
  • Collapsible walls between meeting rooms and discussion rooms to conduct training sessions and town halls

Speaking to ST, the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) said the Tampines site was allocated to MINDEF in 2021.

The former library, which opened in 1994 and was Singapore’s first regional library, was returned to the state in 2018.

Refurbishments began in 2022, ahead of the facility’s opening in October 2023.

Scheme began in 2021

MINDEF said that it introduced M-Works in 2021, with facilities at Bukit Merah Central and Chong Pang Camp in Yishun.

Source: Google Maps

In 2022, a third facility opened at the Defence Technology Tower B on Depot Road in Telok Blangah.

This was followed by the fourth and latest facility in the former Tampines Regional Library last October.

The lease at the M-Works@Tampines hot-desking space began in 2022 and will end in 2032.

While the overall building structure was retained, the interior of the building underwent refurbishment.

MINDEF revealed that all facilities can hold up to 400 people in total, with an average monthly usage rate of about 75%.

It added that the most popular facility is the Telok Blangah branch, with an average monthly usage rate between 80% and 90%.

LTC Adam Lim, Deputy Director (People Operations), said: “The start of the circuit breaker measures during the Covid-19 pandemic has seen a shift towards flexi work arrangements for employees, especially for those in administrative jobs.”

“While work-from-home became an option, we felt the need to better support our employees where they can work at satellite office locations closer to their home.”

He added that this work-near-home arrangement can help improve work productivity and reduce commuting time while ensuring that workplace relations and team collaboration are not compromised with such flexi work practices.

When asked about plans for further expansion, MINDEF told ST they would “continue tracking the usage of current sites before considering its next steps”.

Also read: New Central Manpower Base in Bukit Timah to open progressively from 2025: MINDEF

New Central Manpower Base in Bukit Timah to open progressively from 2025: MINDEF

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