Developing a Committed Workforce
Pontiac Land invests in their people as part of its sustainable employment philosophy
Viewing employees as their most important asset, real estate developer Pontiac Land is committed to investing in talent as part of their efforts to promote sustainable employment across the organisation. The company specialises in luxury real estate development, with a portfolio of hospitality, commercial, retail and residential properties in prime locations in Singapore and abroad.
Pontiac Land has a diverse workforce of different nationalities and backgrounds. Employees in their 20s work regularly alongside long-serving teammates, some of whom are in their 70s. Amid a fast-changing competitive business environment marked by technological advancements and frequent disruptions, the company has put in place strategic plans to ensure that all staff, young and old, are equipped with the necessary skills to adapt to the changes.
In recent years, Pontiac Land has trained their employees to work with the latest housekeeping and security technologies at its premises. Following the outbreak of COVID-19, Pontiac Land has also rolled out new training programmes on digitalisation, including one on digital marketing. In addition, the company has created new roles and added promotional grades in recent years to reward and help rank-and-file staff step up to leadership roles and meet their career aspirations.
“We see sustainable employment as a win-win initiative. While remuneration and career progression are key to this sustainable equation, we believe that staff motivation and engagement are even more crucial as they ignite passion and fuel the internal engines. We feel that a self-motivated team is better geared to take on this dynamic business environment, giving the company that special edge and ingredients for sustained success,” said Annie Ong, Chief Human Resources Officer.
A sense of belonging
One key factor in Pontiac Land’s drive to promote sustainable employment is their ability to cultivate a sense of belonging among employees. To this end, the management team adopts clear, open, and transparent communication channels to better engage the employees.
In the early days of the pandemic, Pontiac Land erred on the side of caution, providing information above and beyond the required to ensure that the Group’s employees were constantly updated in areas such as business performance, working arrangements, cybersecurity issues, and the government’s safe management practices.
To do so, they leveraged multiple communications channels; from the company’s internal intranet, emails and quarterly one-on-one check-ins, to monthly large scale virtual townhalls attended by employees across their global offices. During the townhall, each department and team shared updates on what they did differently during the COVID-19 period.
This strategy appears to have paid off. A recent engagement survey revealed results that surpassed those of the previous year.
Catering to mature workers
A large proportion of Pontiac Land’s workforce is made up of mature workers, and the company has focused on supporting them to remain current in the face of rapid digitalisation and innovation.
This has helped the company to achieve a high level of talent retention. More than 50 per cent of Pontiac Land’s workforce is 40 years of age or older, which puts the Group ahead of Singapore’s demographic pattern. The management believes that mature workers offer deep pockets of experience, serve as an anchor of the company’s values, and act as good role models for their younger colleagues.
“Mature workers are stable, very committed to their work, possess strong work ethics, and have the experience needed to deliver on our rigorous standards. Many have progressed from being mere colleagues to good friends. This was evident during COVID-19, when our sizeable Malaysian workforce was affected by travel and movement restrictions. Everyone helped to look out and support one another,” said Annie Ong, Chief Human Resources Officer.
John Thiru, who has worked at the company since 1999, is one long-serving employee who has benefited from Pontiac Land’s progressive talent management strategies. He joined the firm as a security supervisor and has since grown to become their Chief Security Officer.
“My journey with the company made me stronger and more confident to achieve more in my career. The objective of the Group is not only to grow the business, but also to motivate the staff and encourage employees to be positive in their performance. I saw how the management believes in the development of the company as well as in the careers of all employees,” he said.
He noted that the management of Pontiac Land is proactively looking for ways to upgrade its staff through internal and external training programmes. “What I’ve seen for the past 21 years is that the staff, together with the company, are making progress to achieve the goal of success.”
The Sustainable Employment Pledge
Last year, the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) unveiled a special report titled Sustainable Employment – Achieving Purposeful Business Success Together. A by-business-for-business initiative, the report called on businesses to step up efforts on the upskilling and reskilling of PMETs as well as redesigning jobs with the needs and strengths of mature workers in mind.
The Sustainable Employment Pledge initiated by SBF serves to affirm the commitment of businesses towards sustainable employment and heralds a bright and inclusive future for all Singaporeans.
As of December 2020, over 170 companies have pledged their commitment to sustainable employment. It is timely for your business to take the pledge now!