28 April 2021

On 23 March 2021, the Association of Banks in Singapore (“ABS”) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (“MAS”) jointly issued a Study on Future Workplace (“Study”) for financial institutions (“FIs”) in Singapore. The Study is part of an ongoing collaboration between ABS’ Return to Onsite Operations Taskforce (ROOT) and MAS aimed at coordinating responses to the Covid-19 crisis and preparing for a post Covid-19 new normal.

The workplace strategies and good practices presented in the Study aim to support FIs in building resilience in their operations for the present and beyond. Some of the key practices and suggestions to be considered by FIs include:

  • strengthening internal governance to increase responsiveness in managing issues centred around corporate functions such as human resources, information technology and facilities management during a crisis; 
  • building a pandemic-resilient workplace, seamlessly shifting between “pandemic off” and “pandemic on” states by adjusting four levers: safe management measures (“SMM”), office density, ventilation and operational measures; 
  • embedding agile design principles into the workplace to allow greater flexibility in the use of the workplace; 
  • embracing new technologies to streamline operations and enhance employee experience; 
  • exploring a distributed strategy in workplace locations outside of the central business district, including on-demand workplace options, to increase work flexibility, minimise staff commute and facilitate faster response times during a pandemic; and 
  • assessing the “must-have” and “good-to-have” initiatives in the design of future workplace such as the workplace ecosystem, integration of SMM, workspace density and technology adoption.  

Reference materials

The following materials are available on the ABS website www.abs.org.sg: