Tailored approach to help each sector cut it, The Straits Times on 14 Feb 2017
Some industry associations already recognise the need to take the lead on driving change. And the need to keep costs down in land- and labour-scarce Singapore continues to be a major driver for companies to invest in productivity enhancements. The Waste Management and Recycling Association of Singapore, for instance, organises visits to tradeshows and firms in countries like Germany and Japan, to learn about best practices. It also works with its members to develop new technologies.
Its chairman Melissa Tan says: “Productivity has become rather critical for local waste and recycling companies… Our sector is labour intensive, but not enough Singaporeans are joining us.”
But challenges remain. Investing to become more efficient can be a costly endeavour, and not all companies see the need to transform.
“Cost is the main factor. A number of companies in the waste and recycling industry are small and medium-sized enterprises and so, to invest in new and expensive equipment can be a huge financial challenge which requires us to have the foresight and guts to take that calculated risk,” says Ms Tan.
“Also, it doesn’t help that some workers and even management have a mindset that resists change and insist that ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’.”
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