SINGAPORE – Real estate developer CapitaLand’s more than 2,600 employees in Singapore will get more help to improve their digital skills over the next two years.

They will receive a training allowance of up to $500 each which includes a one-year membership to an e-learning platform, as well as one day of training leave that they can use for external digital-related courses available through the MySkillsFuture portal.

CapitaLand said on Wednesday (Aug 14) that it is investing $5 million in upgrading staff over two years through its new Building Capability Framework, which encourages workers to chart their own learning and development path by selecting from more than 50 core, functional, adaptive and digital training modules.

The programmes include data analytics, blockchain and cyber security. They can be in-house courses at CapitaLand Institute of Management and Business, or at other training partners such as the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) LearningHub, Employment and Employability Institute, SkillsFuture Singapore, Workforce Singapore and the National University of Singapore’s School of Continuing and Lifelong Education.

The framework and incentives apply to both office staff as well as operational staff at its properties.

All of CapitaLand’s Singapore employees will complete at least one digital-related training programme by next year, it said.

It will also customise and roll out the new framework to its employees in over 30 other countries.

CapitaLand Group chief corporate and people officer Tan Seng Chai said the firm wants to speed up staff training in tandem with its efforts to adopt technology to cope with customers’ demand.

“We want to push ahead with a lot more effort to incentivise to motivate our people to pick up skills, particularly in the digital space because this is where most of the applications and expectations from customers and consumers will be,” he told reporters at a learning festival for staff at CapitaLand’s headquarters in Capital Tower.

Last year, about 95 per cent of CapitaLand’s workforce attended at least one learning event, and each completed an average of 51 training hours.

CapitaLand also signed an agreement on Wednesday with the Singapore Industrial and Services Employees’ Union to set up a company training committee which will design and provide training programmes for its employees in Singapore.

The NTUC aims to set up 1,000 such committees over the next three years and help around 330,000 workers gain skills to participate in company transformation. More than 60 have been set up so far this year.

NTUC deputy secretary-general Koh Poh Koon, who witnessed the signing, said the aim of the committees is to have companies articulate the strategy they want to employ to transform to be more competitive in the evolving economic landscape, and translate this down to workers.

“If we can have companies coming up with a clear strategy and then articulate the kind of job scopes as well as the kind of skills required, that will be a near-term outcome that we want to see as defining success (of the committees),” he said.

He added that the scope and structure of the committees may be different at various stages of transformation as well as for different companies. Besides union representatives, other partners from educational and training institutes may be involved.

CapitaLand’s one-day learning festival on Wednesday was for staff to find out about courses available as well as real estate technology solutions, such as a mobile app which allows CapitaLand’s office tenants to book rooms and make payments, thus freeing up frontline staff to do work with higher value-add.