News and views from an unique perspective

Singaporeans really complain too much about their pay

Posted by temasektimes on September 19, 2012

I guess Singaporeans really complain too much, compare those working in Big 4 Auditing what is 120 OT hours per month to them? Ask them does fresh graduate earn 3K? We suffer not just physical stress, we suffered numerous mental stress and think we could go insane any moment.

Tell you what, I graduate from local uni with honors, I willing to work more than 84hrs per week and sometimes shift (coming back on public holidays), I even did job such as digging human faeces and rotten food waste with maggots growing on it for 6months just for my research and I am paid $2,600.

Not only that, I am self-motivated, innovative, proposed idea for superior so that they can save or cut cost and not to mentioned never take MC for past 2 years except for 2 occasions which I am so sick that I can barely moved. I never complain about my job scope and I always try to work more than required. I have class 2 licence, knows how to troubleshoot computer (not to mention to dismantle all the parts and put them tgt), I also do know programming and advance excel and database user as I always use to analysis my data. I can do facilities management, show cleaners how to clean toilet and keep these facilities top conditions, I also carried heavy loads when my cleaners or caretakers are either too old or refuse to do these hard labour job. I can simply tell everyone, I willing to do anything, I don’t see any company willing to pay $4,000 for this kind of graduate.

I basically think nowadays, we have been complaining too much and not willing to put down you degree to the ground and work. I am supporting with Douglas Foo, Sakae Sushi, because at least they mentioned the working hours, unlike some work place we work like dogs and OT everyday without getting OT pay because our basic is more than $2,500…

Lastly, I like to ask my fellow Singaporeans, What do you want or see yourself in the future?


*The above was first posted as a comment on The Temasek Times.


75 Responses to “Singaporeans really complain too much about their pay”

  1. teo cheap buy said

    Aiyo,even our millions salary minister oso complaint

    • FR said

      84 hours = 12 hours a day X 7 days

      Fuck you, Henry Chia. Fuck your entire family and your children.

      As mentioned below, you are an idiot who lets people like Douglas Foo exploit you to get rich himself.

    • Singkaypoh said

      Yalor, this guy sure fits the bill for next “Singapore Conversation” audience, loooool
      Spore needs more like him to work hard & never complain, so that Ministers can enjoy huge salaries while making wayangs to convince themselves how great they are.

    • Angry Bird said

      Henry Chia . . . Maybe its OK for you to be exploited but its NOT OK with others. Please respect others’ rights . . . they have the right to complain or refuse to accept such work conditions, etc. Grow up lah.

    • mahbok tan said

      Either this henry Chia is a clown/comedian or a total liar…..!!!

      Read his article and u notice his english is not up to university standard as claimed……!!!!

      So he did work 120hours of OT and never complain…..don’t you feel stupid…..its against our labour law…no wonder Sgporean like u only know how to bullshit…coz its FREE….!!!

      KNNBCCB….u want to bull with typical Sgporean arh….( meaning no paly play with SGporeans )

  2. Jack said

    84hrs per week ? Give me the name of the employer, I will post it on TCJ FB

    • WATCANISAY said


    • CUPPAM said

      it very common. i clock 16 to 18 hr per day on weekend. even though my work. from 9 to 6.mon to friday. and on weekday. i go home around 10.30(if lucky,) if not will be 3 to 4 am. and back to work at around 9

  3. RespectSingaporean said

    You sound like a Complain letter. Telling everyone how bad you have been treated. Oh so sad, digging shit and all that.

  4. Your fellow S'porean with Aus PR said

    I see myself in Aus for retirement in the future.
    Good luck to you.

    • chulling said


      • your fellow s'porean with Aus PR said

        Retirement means no longer working, now still working so no retirement for now.
        Dun worry will not compete with you to have my retirement here.
        You sour grape?
        I didn’t complain, I am urging all fellow middle class S’poreans to migrate if they are still eligible.

      • your fellow s'porean with Aus PR said

        Retirement means no longer working, now still working so no retirement for now.
        Dun worry will not compete with you to have my retirement here.
        You sour grape?
        I didn’t complain, I am just urging fellow middle class S’poreans to migrate if they are still eligible.

  5. james said

    clearly, you need to work on your language skills

  6. Surprise said

    Grand father story, last time police wear shorts and now police wear pants. How to compare, insane man. Got nothing better to do or either he is one that makes a lot money by making people become his slave while he enjoy life.

  7. P Koh said

    People like you are few and far in between. Keep it up. Hope you do well with better employers.

    • WATCANISAY said


  8. Cecil Chua said

    There’s a story by a guy named George Orwell called Animal Farm. One of the major characters in the story is a horse named Boxer ( Boxer works very hard to support the Animal Farm. At the end, when he can no longer work, he is sent away to be slaughtered and turned into glue.

    There’s two parts to working. Working hard, and working smart. As a result of your hard work, how far do you progress? Are you given a fair share of the rewards of life as a result of your work? Or does someone else take the benefits, leaving you with a small token of achievement? When you finally get sick, or cannot work, will your organization be sympathetic? Do you enjoy a nice big house, where your kids can run and play?

    One of the sad things that has happened in the world, is that labor, even skilled labor like accounting graduates are now commodities. We claw our way out of the morass of others like ourselves, hoping to shine. But for every one that shines, 99 must be in the darkness. You lose, because it is not enough to be good. You have to be better than everyone else. Its an arms race.

    However, if you own land in Singapore, you can live like a king, because land is scarce.rd. 84

    In your case, you work hard- 84 hours a week. Why do you work so your company can get the benefits of your labor? You could spend those 84 hours working for yourself, and getting ALL the money yourself, instead of just a cut. How big a cut do you actually get? How big a cut does your boss get? What about your boss’s boss? What about the government?

    • WATCANISAY said



    • Angry Bird said

      This guy is a real BODOH. Honours degree holder? Gee, I can go buy one in Manila for a small fee. PUI!

  9. Goondu said

    I hate to attack the person, but because you gave yourself as an example, I have no choice. You claimed that graduated with honours meaning you can think, but look at your actions: you work long hours, you do dirty jobs, you never take MC. After all these you are prepared work for little pay also meaning making your boss rich. You don’t seem to be able to think! Why are you making others rich! Shouldn’t you be working for yourself making yourself rich? Start thinking, stop selling yourself short.

  10. WP is our fren said

    I think your english sucks. Are u sure u graduate from local uni with honours?

  11. Realist said

    You better be jack of all trades since writing obviously is not your forte.

  12. Lim said

    Hello? Is this your resume for some high MIW post? To tell them you are willing to suffer physical, mental stress and go insane or dig feces/maggots? You may be willing but not other people who may not enjoy this masochistic 苦肉计 or work lke dogs. If that is what you want for your future and be insane, please go ahead but – don’t mete out the same punishiment to others who deserve to be treated as human beings.

  13. sporeoboriginal said

    I think.. U have a bright future to slog your whole life. Take care

  14. Mark Roche said

    Maybe it’s because your English grammar and writing skills are pretty weak for a Uni Grad.
    Just my two cents.

  15. Judy said

    No one is willing to pay you $4000 a month because you don’t think you deserve $4000 a month. You seem very proud that you are doing so many things for $2600. Are you bragging about your lack of life outside work?

    Workaholics love to ‘complain’ about their long working hours, but in reality, they are actually bragging that they are willing to sacrifice anything, including their own health and quality of life, for their work.

    I hope you suggested to your boss to cut your pay further, so that the company can save even more money.

  16. shiroiluke said

    This looks more like a self-intro cum self promoting post, is this guy trying to seek for a better employer to pay him the amount he shall get since his doing more than his job scope and doing more than what is required for him to do.

    Some work are within job scope, some are not. Some of us do things out of goodwill, not to self promote or trying to earn credits from others/employers.

    I agreed that most Singaporean complaints about their pay range, because of them are degree holders. But who shall we blame for such situation to happens? I would jolly point my finger towards those people that promotes to the public with the concept of “Degree holders pay range is $3k & above”, “Diploma Holders is $1800 – $2000”.
    Those are the people that subconsciously educating the public with such info, and gives them the wrong impression.

    So do Singaporean complaints a lot? Yes, we do!! Because of the media information from those people had set root deeply into our mind.

  17. SuSu said

    You did not graduate with good results, that is why you have to do shit work

    • sure or not said

      No good results can still get an honours degree?
      Degree holders already doing shit work, what about diploma and A level holders? More shit work?

  18. Richard said

    graduate from local uni with honors, english like that? Yeah right…

  19. Jaded said

    you are seriously dumb… kenah exploited and still clueless. Should join YPAP, they love people like you.

  20. grammar police said

    Well done; your grammar is poor and your subject-verb agreements don’t add up. How do you think we will take what you said as factual information from a local graduate with honours? Besides, graduating with third class is still honours. Your point?

    Before trying to prove anything from nothing, make sure you sound convincing. A good way to do that is to start correcting your English and improve your proficiency at it. Perhaps this way, coupled with your “advanced portfolio of value-adding skillsets”, a decent presentation of your ideas in a proper register can improve your employability

    I’m astounded by the standard of English a “typical” local honours graduate possesses. Is this what NUS/NTU/SMU is capable of producing? I’m terribly disappointed.

  21. oute said

    Asked Ms Grace Fu lah.if it is enough

  22. randomO said

    haha! At least be ‘smarter’?
    before posting any stuff to a website, put what you want to type on ‘Microsoft words’.. at least it will sort of ‘correct your english’ a little..

  23. With direct honors programme, there are so many honors students on the street. Our public universities churn out at least 15000 students every year, so you are telling half of each cohort to do brainless labour simply because our economy cannot provide jobs of the right match? Please note that some of the students have to pay up students loans and even support their parents. For you, what to do, you are not a second upper honors and above, so you are still doing jobs that do not even require the brain of having a college degree. Applauds!!!! If you were, any public service agency will be happily taking you in. Hopefully we are not of the same alumni, you being classified as a local graduate is such a disgrace with your myopic views. We are happy that you are slogging for what you are worth and shelve plans of marriage and housing. By the way, i have friends who are not even graduates making more than SGD3000 a month after working for two years. You make sure that you are not complaining about that because you do not know how to market yourself and make full use of any paper qualification you have. Looking at my fellow graduates, they want more than a job, a career where employers recognise their abilities and provide prospects, do not need to face tremendous competition from foreigners and provide sufficient funds to get married. If all these demands and probably complains are not valid for you, I cannot imagine the degree of ambitions you have.

  24. Lorelei said

    Well then, I guess your essay doesn’t justify the certificates you’ve attained.

    Looking at it from a different perspective, it seems like you’re desperate for money rather than having assets to work for you. Not surprised to see people like you if you asked me, when one is so willing to compromise that much just so he’s able to have a decent income.

    As an employer, I can’t see value in the ways of how you’ve addressed this issue, as majority of your opinions and remarks to reshape an individual’s employability rate seems to derive from your purview.

    Each and every individual, be it Singaporean or not, have shaped their lives and careers in their own ways. Clearly being ‘willing to work more than 84hrs per week’ is not a beneficial way to achieve things – you’re just killing yourself with overtime and blatant disregard for your own health.

    Mr Douglas Foo, in his rationale, expressed the correct ideology but with a wrong approach. It is true that majority of Singaporeans have a habit to complain and pick their stuff, including myself, but employability could now be debated on different platforms of discussion. Don’t judge what you don’t know, your argument is invalid.

    And for people like you to fall for his skewed ideology, I must say, either you lack insight, or you’re an idiot. Yes, read this again, ‘you’re an idiot’.

    If I could make it without a single piece of paper, a dollar in my savings and was pushed homeless at that point of time, and could own a company where I could help as many local skilled workers as I can by providing them comfortable jobs with reasonable salaries…

    …I’m going to ask you a question again, after reading your argument on said issue;

    Is it simply because you were blinded by the general consensus that having good papers could fetch you a great job up ahead, and when you were shoved off by competitors, you shunned the totality of jobs you’ve wanted to achieve and thus, explaining the existence of this article?

    Sincerely, a secondary school dropout.

    (Yes, it’s a little wordy, but as long as it makes sense.)

  25. Self Employed Dude said

    After reading your post, I would say that you might probably have academic excellence since you mentioned about graduating with honours.

    However, I’m sorry to say that you are a product of the society – Study hard, get your degree with honours and land yourself a “stable and secure” job with good benefits.

    Like you, I graduated with a degree, the only difference was that I saw no point in getting honours, because I would end up competing in the rat race with people like you who thinks that getting a degree with honours or masters would secure a good job with high pay and great benefits.

    My logic is simple. If you do what everyone is doing, you will get what everyone is getting. So I took the path less travelled and I joined the financial planning industry as an insurance agent (one of the most frowned upon careers).

    Ive been in this industry for 9 months now, and I’m taking home an average of $7000 every month, and I wake up at 12pm everyday. I only work 3-5hrs a day and of this duration, half the time, I’m dining with clients. I own my own car, a Honda fit (not expensive, but it’s still a pretty decent car), and I just bought my HDB flat. I’m only 26 this year.

    End of the day, as a self employed individual, I work hard for my own dreams. My efforts are spent building towards my own dreams and goals,.and I don’t have to slog for my employer and help them build their dreams.

    What you lack is financial intelligence. Since you are a graduate with honours, I’m sure it’s not to late for you to read up more on books to brush up your financial IQ and open up ur mind to working smart, not just working hard. A good book to start with would probably be, Rich Dad Poor Dad, by Robert Kiyosaki.

    Start working hard for your own dreams today instead of building someone else’s dreams 🙂

  26. Skilled Elite said

    Accounting Graduates are not skilled labour. They are just peons. The true elite go to banking and finance.

  27. AH LAI said

    What is wrong with having a dream? I believe we study for so many years is not just become a machine. I guess you have been missing out in life. Good luck with that.

  28. your fellow S'porean said

    I want pap to lose 2/3 majority in 2016 for a start? Can?

    Mod’s note:

    Even so, the ‘Wayang Party’ will come to its rescue:

    ‘If the PAP fails to win a majority in the next GE, the Workers Party will form a coalition govt with it (to keep it in power).’

    – PAP’s ‘B’ team MP Pritam Singh, May 2011

  29. Naivety said

    Hey Henry!

    Are u an FT/PR as the way you write, u don’t seem to be a local Sinkaporean?

    Btw, u have graduated from a local University with an honours, may I know which class of honours please as nowadays, 3rd Class Honours Degree & 2nd Class Lower Honours do not mean anything at all & from which local University, Part-time or Full-time coursework?

    Your English vocabulary seriously needs some brushing up especially on the usage of verb if u know what I mean!
    It seems to be that u are actually taking the opportunity here to sell yourself short & undercutting everyone by telling people that you have worked at least 84 hours a week despite a meagre salary of only S$2,600/month & willing to do all kinds of shit jobs without any complaints whatsoever at the same time bragging about it here!

    Are u for real or is this a delusion on your part to condemn every native Sinkaporean graduates?

  30. Hey Henry, I admire your attitude and out look in life. Hard work is fine. In fact it’s a good thing, provided you get fare wage for it.
    The question is, it’s not about OT or hard work or even salaries. Nothing is wrong with that per-se.
    What’s wrong is… there an underlying fact at play here? And that is….

    Is our labor laws of a first world nation or a third world nation?
    Show me another first world nation that has such draconian work environment?
    This country has developed very well I might say but why aren’t our labor laws in par with the nations growth?
    You see Henry, that is our secret weapon. That’s how we maintained our edge.
    We are the only “Developed” nation where the GDP keeps growing. while the other in the developed world are struggling.

    You are very optimistic and gung-ho and that’s a very good thing. You still have a long work life ahead of you.
    All young people should be like you. But…..
    Try telling that to a middle age man or woman with heavy responsibility.
    Who only sees more work, less money and no time for living life ahead.

    You see Henry, the line between working hard and exploitation has been blurred in S’pore.
    Abnormality and become the norm.

    Henry, if you see normalcy in the present work place it can only mean one thing……

    You are planing to be an employer in the future.

    I can only say one thing to you, “Reward where reward is deserved.”

    Victor de Silva

  31. prata man said

    I think Sakae Sushi wants u, even more OT then they can ever dream of. You can fix all their faulty computers and displays near the conveyer belts summore since you are so good at computers. Best bang for buck. While at it can take some courses at your own expenses from your own wallet on how to make sushi, I’m very sure within 2 weeks your sushi making skills will be better then all of their current standards.

    Good luck with your new job. Best of wishes.

    • Singkaypoh said

      LOOOOL funniest comment ever! ABC market also needs a new dishwasher…besides u dun need good English to wash dishes or fix computers 🙂

  32. singaporean said

    It seems that you are working hard, not working smart. To a company, it doesn’t matter if you did manual labour, showed cleaners how to clean toilets etc. Why? Because that doesn’t help a company to make extra profits! What’s more important is the innovative thinking, helping the company in the big picture, not in small tiny details that don’t really matter. Sure, the cleaner or old ladies will be grateful, but you can’t expect a company to pay you more just for that…

    • laughing balls said

      working smart….innovative thinking,…the big picture

      U mean like in Marine parade car park, Big splash … Teck Whye Hawker centre toilet ?

      Hmm…not every one has the make up for it. The male talents with their best soft sell software could not complete with … our local dames, never mind even if 40 years old or married.

  33. sg said

    Henry, you are ‘special’.
    Hence, you should not compare yourself with others.

  34. yan dao said

    Fuck u deep deep ! Brainless idiot

  35. Babuseng said

    Ummm, so Henry works for big 4 auditing, and his job scope includes showing cleaner how to clean toilet? I’m not quite sure I believe he actually graduated from college.

  36. Nobody said

    A cert really means nothing, is how you see yourself in the future and how lucky you could be. Your boss may be 1 who has no cert or nothing but has tons of money to employ you(Honors degree), you work like shit but when you are injured. They pay for you for your hospital bills and 1 or 2 months of pay but you get a lifelong injury that would cost you an entire life with a handicap.

    So think, think and think for yourself, i have seen over-zealous or over-hard working ppl who die without anybody beside them as he abandon his friend, wife & son for work because the boss tell him to work. Get nothing in the end, then why live so long when you get nothing after working.


  37. Terrrrrible english! said

    Anyone understand Henry? His English is so atrocious!

    • Naivety said

      I do believe he is a Foreign Trash/Foreign Thief masquerading as a “Sinkaporean” as his vocabulary standard is worse than “Singish” even!

  38. Ren said

    Henry, you achieved your motive..You are not any better…

  39. WorkHardNotEnough said

    Henry, do you know that if you are not financially independent fast enough, you are a burden to our country? Imagine if everyone is this country is behaving like you, what will our future be like? I feel so sad that you are wasting our taxpayer money on your education (honors some more) but got no financial intelligence. So stop telling others you are working very hard but accepting little pay. I believe everyone should work smart rather than work hard, if we want to improve our standard of living.

  40. sporeoboriginal said

    My friend.. U study so high have u heard of Ministry of manpower? U know on this island got manpower laws? U work so many OT u say ur employer never pay u? If government sector ok lar u eat shit work long hours but public sector? Clearly u must be lying or u study so high to be fcuking stupid

  41. Rubbish Chee said

    working 84hours is nothing to brag about. its because of your inefficient working method which requires you to work longer than required

  42. Nice Person said

    You graduate from local uni with honors but only pay $2600??? I think taxi driver earn more than you. Wasted your money and time to study in uni…..

  43. Independent said

    Lol. Continue ur stupidity at this level. I earn much more and don’t work like ur ‘level’. Y stoop so low? Maybe ur set of skills is really that limited and that’s y. U telling others not to complain is insane cos u are seriously exploited my dear friend lol.

  44. Cheekia said

    If u complain abt Singaporeans complaining, you also complain king what

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