Renewing your MoM Employment Pass: Everything you need to know

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If you’re a Singapore employer, you’ll know how important it is to secure an Employment Pass (EP) for any foreign workers on your team. It’s the EP that enables talent from overseas to apply for higher-tier positions in Singapore that may require a greater breadth of work experience and higher educational qualifications.

EPs are a legal requirement specifically for foreign professionals, managers, and executives who earn at least $5,000 monthly and have passed the Complementarity Assessment Framework (COMPASS). (If this you’re applying for an EP for the first time, read more about the requirements and application process here)

The process of renewing an EP requires providing proof of educational qualifications, and while the process is usually straightforward, it can take some time to ensure the relevant admin is completed in time.

1 September - EP renewal deadline

In September 2023, the Ministry of Manpower updated their rules on EP applications, announcing that employers who submit new EP applications and declare qualifications to earn points under the Complementarity Assessment (COMPASS) framework are required to provide verification proof of diploma and higher education credentials.

Now, the Ministry is reminding all Singapore businesses that from 1 September 2024, all foreign workers working in the country on an Employment Pass will need to get their EPs renewed under COMPASS.

What does this mean for you as an employer?

If you are the one responsible for these renewals, you will need to make sure that you get verification proofs in before the September deadline, otherwise your renewal application for your employee may be rejected due to insufficient documentation.

How much time do you need to renew your EP?

Depending on your candidate’s qualification and the amount of time passed since being awarded, schools may take anywhere between 2 to 6 weeks to retrieve and validate against their records.

However, there can be delays - and a risk of deportation if the school does not respond before the application deadline. Because of this, we recommend that you start your checks at least 3 months in advance.

Verification proofs are valid for up to 1 year before submission to the Singapore Ministry of Manpower. After this they will be valid throughout your employee’s continued stay in Singapore as an approved worker.

What happens if I miss the deadline for my EP renewal?

If you fail to get these documents in time, the EP will expire and all associated dependent passes issued to the employee’s spouse and children may also become invalid which may hinder your inability to stay in Singapore for continued employment. 

To avoid this situation, make sure you and your employer work on these as a precaution.

  1. Remember to order and obtain these verifications in time (see timelines above)
  2. Remember that schools also need time to check their records - and if they weren’t digitalised at the time of issuing the qualification (this is more likely for any diplomas issued pre-2010), there will be more work involved to pull up those files and verify that your education qualifications are legitimate
  3. Make sure you work with MOM-authorised providers such as Veremark who are able to advise and guide you through the process to ensure that the EP process runs smoothly and does not disrupt your business. (Why is it important to work with background check providers approved by the MOM? Head here to find out)

How Veremark can help with EP renewal

Veremark is one of the few providers authorised by Ministry of Manpower to conduct education qualification checks worldwide. What this means is that regardless of what country and school your candidate previously studied in - even if it was thirty years ago - Veremark will be able to assist you in reaching out to the school to get this verified and authenticated.

Our Education Checks can verify details such as:

  • Enrollment dates 
  • Attendance
  • Degree or diploma conferred 
  • Graduation date

We can also conduct Institution Accreditation Checks to determine if the awarding institution is genuine and a recognized provider of the degree program. This is especially crucial since the falsification of documents has been a growing problem in Singapore. 

Veremark can run multiple checks and combine relevant information so you can better weigh them against each other, helping you choose the best talent. This means you can streamline not only the Employment Pass application for your candidates but also your hiring process as a whole.

If you’d like more support and guidance on your EP renewal and what to do under the new COMPASS framework, reach out to us today at Veremark.

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What background check do I need?

This depends on the industry and type of role you are recruiting for. To determine whether you need reference checks, identity checks, bankruptcy checks, civil background checks, credit checks for employment or any of the other background checks we offer, chat to our team of dedicated account managers.

Why should employers check the background of potential employees?

Many industries have compliance-related employment check requirements. And even if your industry doesn’t, remember that your staff have access to assets and data that must be protected. When you employ a new staff member you need to be certain that they have the best interests of your business at heart. Carrying out comprehensive background checking helps mitigate risk and ensures a safer hiring decision.

How long do background checks take?

Again, this depends on the type of checks you need. Simple identity checks can be carried out in as little as a few hours but a worldwide criminal background check for instance might take several weeks. A simple pre-employment check package takes around a week. Our account managers are specialists and can provide detailed information into which checks you need and how long they will take.

Can you do a background check online?

All Veremark checks are carried out online and digitally. This eliminates the need to collect, store and manage paper documents and information making the process faster, more efficient and ensures complete safety of candidate data and documents.

What are the benefits of a background check?

In a competitive marketplace, making the right hiring decisions is key to the success of your company. Employment background checks enables you to understand more about your candidates before making crucial decisions which can have either beneficial or catastrophic effects on your business.

What does a background check show?

Background checks not only provide useful insights into a candidate’s work history, skills and education, but they can also offer richer detail into someone’s personality and character traits. This gives you a huge advantage when considering who to hire. Background checking also ensures that candidates are legally allowed to carry out certain roles, failed criminal and credit checks could prevent them from working with vulnerable people or in a financial function.

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Request a discovery session with one of our background screening experts today.

MOM education verification: a guide for all employers

A guide for all employers in Singapore

Singapore’s booming economy entices thousands of overseas professionals to its shores every year. Its role as the financial hub in Asia, and its ability to weather the storms of the global financial crisis and the COVID pandemic has seen its popularity rise.

Regarded as a safe country, with a stable economy and no foreign debt - Singapore is prosperous, peaceful, and innovative. Widely regarded as an attractive place to work, almost half the population of the island are immigrants.

With this influx of talent, the country has had to make adjustments to the way it accepts new workers from abroad. In this guide we’ll explore the rise of Singapore as a desirable place to live and work, the problems it has faced with this rise in interest from international visitors, and new regulations that all employers in Singapore need to know about.

This guide explores:

- Singapore's foreign worker problem and the rise of diploma fraud

- The requirements needed to work in Singapore as a employee from overseas

- The new regulations introduced by Singapore's Ministry of Manpower (MOM)

- Third-party verification on education credentials

- New two-stage eligibility framework (Salary + COMPASS)

- MOM's collaboration with Veremark

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