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Investing in human capital

These businesses have created positive workplace policies on training, development and inclusivity

Vicent Ee and Financial Alliance Management Team.jpg

Financial Alliance: Understanding the value of people 

Independent financial advisory (IFA) firm Financial Alliance offers a huge range of choice to its customers. Its pro-customer, one-stop solutions platform includes hundreds of products, including life insurance and investment. 

That dedication to putting people first can also be seen within the company. With strong training and development policies in place for the last 17 years, it has even been able to set up its own training academy, a unique capability compared to other similar firms. 

For its successful efforts, it was a Champion in the "Workplace – People Development" category at this year's Brands for Good Awards. It was also an Honouree in the "Community – Social Giving & Engagement" category.

"We always say that we are in a 'people' business," said Vincent Ee, Managing Director at Financial Alliance. "That's probably because we believe strongly that people make a significant impact to the success or failure of an organisation. As we embrace a progressive culture, we want our people to be forward-looking and innovative."

The company promotes work-life harmony as well as mental, physical and social well-being using different means; including annual retreats, health screenings as well as recognition for good attendance and long service.

As a result of its people development efforts, it is the only financial advisory firm to be certified for both Singapore Quality Class Star and People Developer by Enterprise Singapore. 

In addition, some 40 per cent of its people have been with the company for five years or longer. Said Mr Ee: "It's clear we are doing things for the good of our people, otherwise we wouldn’t have been able to retain so many talents for so long."
Mr Ee added: "After many years of hard work, Financial Alliance has grown from its humble beginnings to become the largest IFA firm in Singapore, a position that is not easy for our competitors to catch up because it is not just the size but the quality and culture of the organisation that matter."

Drum Prodigy Singapore: Leading the beat on inclusivity

Social enterprise Drum Prodigy Singapore wants to make a difference with its music education and wellness programmes for both people with special needs and the mainstream public. 

The desire to effect change can also be seen in its hiring policies. The organisation's founders Sivaranjini Das and Shamroz Khan believe the music industry can benefit with a diverse and inclusive workforce too. So they are empowering people with special needs in their careers through pre-employment, on-job training and inclusive hiring opportunities.

The company was an Honouree in the "Workplace – Diversity & Inclusion" category at the Brands for Goods 2019 Awards. 

Ms Das and Mr Khan developed The Drum Prodigy Holistic Train-and-Place Programme for people with disabilities. Their aim is to equip participants with knowledge and skills required to work in a music school as school support assistants, classroom support and facility maintenance support. The programme is recognised and supported by SG Enable, an agency dedicated to enabling people with disabilities.

Staff in the programme are trained in classroom management, housekeeping, communication skills, workplace health and safety, musical skills training and work stamina development. Their duties include facility and classroom management, and they also help to keep the school and instruments clean and assist during classes. 

"By 2020, we aim to double the number of job opportunities for them," said Mr Khan, Founding Director of Drum Prodigy Singapore. 

The founders introduced health drumming in 2007, when they started their Drum Prodigy programme for people with special needs and youth-at-risk in Singapore. It has also been offered to Special Education schools and mainstream schools.

Their vision is to build a music school where people of all abilities come together to learn in a non-competitive, positive and inclusive environment.

Said Mr Khan: "From providing music education to people with special needs to providing training and inclusive job opportunities today, Drum Prodigy Singapore has impacted the lives of many beneficiaries and their families. As a local brand, we are very proud to achieve this."

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