Culture of Singapore—Jobs in Singapore’s hotel and food services sector are frequently regarded as low-paying and undervalued, and the business as a whole has few progressive policies for hiring and retaining employees. There is a lot of competition in the food and beverage industry, as well as an ever-increasing battle for the best local talent.
For small and medium-sized firms in the food and beverage (F&B) industry, the Institute for Human Resources Professionals (IHRP) has developed a series of playbooks to assist in demystifying HR by utilizing simple, business-friendly terminology.
You’ll find a selected collection of HR resources, tools, and templates to help you solve business problems in the playbooks. The playbook also includes case studies from 14 local F&B businesses, all featured in the playbook.
An HR and Quality Director at Ramda & Days Hotel by Wyndham Singapore explains how the two companies attract and keep their staff financially sustainable. Chua, an IHRP Master Professional, believes that when people feel like they belong, they will perform better (IHRP-MP).
The “Count on me” service attitude is reflected in the hotel’s work culture. It emphasizes the importance of each employee taking personal responsibility for the quality of the visitor experience by promoting responsiveness, respect, and a positive guest experience. To put it another way: a culture of empowerment, engagement, and trust in delivering excellent customer service results.
The Digital Transformation Playbook features this case study as well. Recognizing the importance of employee involvement, the HR team at the Ramada and Days Hotel by Wyndham Singapore has adapted and exploited technology during the pandemic.
An employee-engagement software developed by Chua is based on the belief that timely, unambiguous, and repeated communications instill employee confidence in the firm. Customized mobile app for HR-related information, communication between management and employees, and e-appreciation of employees are all features of RD-Connect.
Because of these initiatives, the hotel has a higher retention rate than the industry norm, which is reflected in the high levels of employee satisfaction it constantly enjoys.
The Culture of Singapore Shines During Lunar New Year
Shila Das has been bringing chicken curry and nasi biryani to her best friend Wendy Chua’s house in Singapore for the Lunar New Year for over two decades. They had hot pot for breakfast and then those dishes.
Ms. Chua’s grandmother’s house had a large atrium where lion dance troupes performed, and she and her friend, now 51, used to spend the holiday together as teenagers. When the ethnically Chinese Chua family requested Ms. Das, who is Indian and Vietnamese, to preside over their New Year lo hei ritual three decades ago, she had no idea what she was getting herself into. In Chinese, Ms. Das led the family in flinging the materials, flinging raw fish, slivered carrots, and pickled ginger into the air. The Chinese phrase “tossing up good fortune” (Lo hei) implies “tossing up a good fortune.”
The Chinese diaspora, which comprises 75% of Singapore’s population, comes together to celebrate the Lunar New Year, which falls on Feb. 1 this year. It includes Hokkien and Cantonese from the southern part of China; Hainanese from Hainan; a migrant group from all over China called Hakka; and Peranakans from the region for more than 400 years who have mixed Malay and European ancestry. Each ethnic group has its own set of traditions. Still, the island’s colorful and distinctive culinary fabric has been produced over years of living amongst one another and other peoples like Malays and Indians.
When it comes to celebrating the holidays in Singapore, a multi-cultural feast “comes as naturally as breathing,” says Christopher Tan, 49, a food writer and author of a cookbook on Southeast Asian pastries. As a symbol of good fortune in China, he produces the traditional nian gao rice cake.
Rice was a common ingredient in the region’s festive desserts. However, wheat flour and butter were introduced to Singapore during British settlement and subsequent annexation and are now widely utilized.
Her aunt’s housewarming party is marked by a dish of warm, homemade pastries: long, exquisite cookies; sweet pineapple tarts; and mild cigars of paper-thin biscuits. Her grandmother Chua Jim Neo, a notable Peranakan cuisine celebrity and the mother of Singapore’s first prime minister Lee Kuan Yew, passed along these family recipes.
Using forks and knives instead of chopsticks, Ms. Lee recalled how her grandmother served Lunar New Year dinner on beautiful red and gold lacquered porcelain. She reworked and modernized her family recipes, which she says are “part of Singapore’s colonial history.”
A New York-based Peranakan cookbook author, Sharon Wee grew up eating a 15-day feast that took weeks to prepare. Seasonings like sambal belacan and a curry made from spices dried and bloomed by her mother were ground by an Indian miller in the days leading up to Lunar New Year’s Eve. They bought beef rendang for their Muslim halal-abiding friends because her parents prepared various New Year dishes that contained pork.
It’s just too much labor to cook for two weeks straight for many Singaporeans. For many modern families, a hotel restaurant or a shortened rendition of traditional cuisine is a convenient option for a single meal.