In the hustle and bustle of the corporate world, a recent post on r/askSingapore shed light on a dilemma faced by an employee from a Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME). The manager, it seems, has pushed the team to the brink by overloading them with work just before the Chinese New Year. This article explores the legality of such actions, the rights of employees, and practical advice from the online community.
Understanding the Predicament
The post narrates the manager’s ultimatum – complete the overloaded tasks on time or risk the cancellation of approved leave. The employee, along with two coworkers, faces the daunting prospect of putting in an extra 13 hours this week, unpaid, to meet the stringent deadlines imposed by the manager.
Netizens shared their insights, emphasizing the delicate balance between legal boundaries and employee rights. One netizen suggested that complaining might not be fruitful, especially for white-collar jobs, and recommended completing the tasks while actively seeking new job opportunities.
Legal Framework: Can a Boss Cancel Approved Leave?
The legality of the manager’s threat to cancel approved leave with just one week’s notice comes into question. While this might seem harsh, labor laws in Singapore allow employers to make such decisions within the legal framework. Understanding these nuances becomes crucial for employees in navigating work-related challenges.
The predicament of not being paid for the additional 13 hours of work raises concerns about labor exploitation. The term “volunteer OT” introduces ambiguity, leaving employees in a difficult position. Legal experts might need to scrutinize the phrasing to determine the legitimacy of such demands.
The employee expressed a desire to report the situation to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), only to discover the legal complexities surrounding leave cancellation and demands for overtime.
The Netizen’s Post
Boss expects team to OT for free
Can my boss do that?
Manager has overloaded us with work before cny. He says if we dont finish our work on time, he will cancel our approved leave to make us finish the task.
Because my team works in the office, we are not given OT pay so we essentially are working for no pay or have our leave cancelled.
I am already planning to leave but wondering if I should report this.
It will require atleast 40 hours of OT to finish all the work not 1 day.
Its an SME
Edit 2: I understand many people want me to F over my manager but my main concern was to report this situation to MOM. But apparently it is legal to cancel leave with 1 week notice and demand OT. I may be able to report not paying OT but he phrased it as “volunteer OT” and 2.6k will still be roughly half our pay.
Also i made a mistake with the 40 hours. It is split between 3 of us so we are required to work an estimated additional 13 hours in the coming week.