Singapore’s Security ITM seeks to transform operating models through tech and innovation

Singapore’s Security ITM seeks to transform operating models through tech and innovation

Mrs Josephine Teo, Minister, Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Home Affairs and Second Minister for Manpower, launched the Security Industry
Transformation Map (ITM [1]) today at
the Lifelong Learning Institute. The Government will invest about S$10 million
over the next three years to support the initiatives under the Security ITM.

Roadmaps are
being developed for 23 industries to address issues within each industry and
deepen partnerships between the Government, firms, industries, trade
associations and chambers. The ITMs are grouped into 6 broad cluster:
Manufacturing, Built environment, Trade & connectivity, Essential Domestic
Services, Modern services and Lifestyle.

The Security Industry ITM comes under the Built Environment Cluster,
which also includes the Construction,
and Real

The Security ITM, led by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA),
seeks to transform the industry from one that is manpower-reliant, to one that
leverages technology and raises skills to deliver high-quality security
solutions. The ITM has been developed over a period of more than a year through
a collective effort, through numerous focus group discussions and consultations
with industry associations, security agencies, the Labour movement, service
buyers and Government agencies.

There are currently about 240 security agencies in
Singapore, 600 security service providers and 47,000 active security officers.
Though the number of jobs involved might be relatively small as compared to some
of the other industries for which ITMs have been developed, the security
industry plays an important role in the safety and security of Singapore.
Security agencies and officers are responsible for the security of many
industrial, commercial and residential premises, as well as events. The
security industry is also a key partner of the Home Team. In view of the heightened
security threat from terrorism and increase in number of buildings and
facilities in Singapore, the demand for security services is set to increase.

The Security ITM has identified four strategies to transform
the industry and enable security companies to shift from just supplying
manpower to delivering integrated security solutions: 1) supporting technology
and innovation; 2) promoting ‘best sourcing’ of services, with Government
taking the lead; 3) aligning regulations with ITM objectives to improve
standards; and 4) improving skills to enable career progression.

Credit: Ministry of Home Affairs, Singapore

The Security ITM
builds on the foundation of tripartite initiatives (collaboration among unions,
employers and the Government) to improve productivity. In 2016, the Progressive
Wage Modelwas implemented to raise skills and wages and increase job
attractiveness. Wages grew by 23% per year between 2014 and 2016, and are
expected to rise further. Overtime exemption [1] will be removed in 2021, which would further improve working

Driving innovation and technology adoption

The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) is
partnering with MHA and the industry to develop the Security Industry Digital
Plan (IDP) for small and medium enterprises (SMEs). The IDP will provide
step-by-step advice to SMEs on the adoption of market-ready digital solutions
required at each stage of their growth. The Security IDP is expected to be
released in the first half of 2018.

IMDA will also place focus on supporting pilot projects that
have the potential to uplift the whole sector and help SMEs to grow in that
sector. An example of such a project supported under IMDA’s SMEs
Go Digital programme
, is Concorde’s
I-Man facility Sprinter (IFIS) solution which comprises of a mobile command
centre and a network of cameras and wireless communication equipment, to
monitor a cluster of buildings. A team of three officers within the vehicle provide
security surveillance to buildings monitored and respond immediately to any
security incidents.

Currently, the IFS is deployed at more than 140 premises. With
support from IMDA, Concorde will be deploying the IFS to secure 30 premises in
an area in Tuas, with 9 specialists instead of 30 security guards.

To co-develop innovative solutions that are not yet
available in the market, IMDA and MHA are issuing a joint Call for Innovative
Solutions (CFIS) for the Security sector.  

The CFIS will support the co-development efforts of
Singapore-based consortium projects that comprises of technology firms,
facilities management companies, security agencies, and building owners.
Proposals must include plans to collaboratively venture into new growth areas
and markets overseas and steps to gain user acceptance and profile innovative
technology solutions. They must also incorporate efforts to gather feedback and
solve any interoperability or implementation constraints and outline the
commercial viability for Proof-of-Concepts (POCs), including potential business
models and deployment models.

Promoting Best Sourcing

The Security ITM aims to support buyers to adopt best
sourcing of security services through funding schemes and outreach efforts.

Best sourcing is defined as the principle of awarding
service contracts based on performance and quality, instead of solely based on
price. Being a “smart” buyer for security services requires understanding the
security needs of a facility by doing risk assessment. The buyers would have to
allow service providers to offer integrated solutions to meet security needs,
and evaluating these proposals based on quality and value-for-money. Contracts
will have to be structured based on desired performance outcomes, instead of prescriptive
demands such as headcounts.  

The Government will also take the lead in adopting outcome-based
security contracts. The Security ITM targets for most government agencies to
adopt outcome-based contracts by 2020. This will include conducting security
risk assessments and establishing longer contract durations.

MHA and JTC Corporation (JTC), have started to re-structure
security contracts by aggregating demand and focusing on outcomes. This is expected
to provide sufficient economies of scale to incentivise technology, process
innovation and training.

JTC will be launching an outcome-based security tender for cluster
guarding of its buildings in one-north, with the aim of achieving productivity
savings of at least 20% and demonstrating the benefits of outcome-based contracts.
Participating security agencies can propose how best to meet the desired
security outcomes for the cluster of buildings, for example by installing CCTVs
equipped with video analytics and linking them to a central command centre,
with roving response teams. JTC will also emphasise continuous training to enhance
the skills and knowledge for the security personnel deployed at one-north.

In addition, service buyers of security, cleaning and
landscaping services, who are early adopters of Best Sourcing, can receive
funding support under a new pilot grant administered by NTUC U Care Centre,
called Smart Sourcing Initiative (SSI). The grant covers up to 20% of the total
contract price, and is capped at $100,000 per contract.

Revising regulations to improve standards

Singapore’s Police Licensing and Regulatory Department conducts
an annual mandatory assessment of security agencies, called the Security
Agencies Grading Exercise (SAGE).

Previously, the criteria were primarily output-based, for
example whether the security agency has put in place Standard Operating
Procedures (SOPs) for different scenarios. There was only one criterion on
whether security agencies deploy technology to improve productivity.

The grading
for security agencies will be revised to focus on security
outcomes and technology adoption and enable better differentiation of agencies
that invest in training and technology, and which deliver high quality
services. There will be greater focus on assessment rather than just
documentation. The new SAGE criteria will apply from this year.

Skills development and Career Progression

To improve the quality of jobs in the security industry, the
Skills Framework for Security was also launched today. It is jointly developed
by SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG), Workforce Singapore (WSG) and the MHA together
with employers, industry associations, education and training providers, and
the union.

This framework provides key information on the sector and
career progression pathways, and also outlines the existing and emerging skills
and competencies for the job roles.

Three pathways have been identified, namely (i) Private
Security; (ii) Security Consultancy; (iii) Auxiliary Police. These encompass 11
key job roles.

A key feature of the new Skills Framework for Security is a new career pathway in security consultancy.
The security consultant carries out risk assessments to identify what needs to
be protected – based on the threats, vulnerabilities and risks to a facility –
and how to best protect it.

At the launch, MHA and Temasek Polytechnic also signed a
memorandum of understanding for a new Specialist Diploma in Security
Consultancy to be offered from April 2019. The programme will cover risk
assessment, building security and relevant legislation, security technology,
and project management. Security consultants will help bring further
professionalism and capabilities into the sector. 

[1] The Employment Act
stipulates the maximum number of overtime hours allowed, and the security
industry is the only industry that is given an exemption for day-to-day