Last updated: 21 July 2021

Published on: 21 July 2021

For Information and Communications Sector

Additional Safe Management Measures for ICT Sector

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM), together with SNEF and NTUC, has updated the workplace safe management measures and requirements that employers and businesses will need to put in place.

Refer to MOM’s advisory on Requirements for Safe Management Measures at the workplace, issued on 9 May 2020 and updated on 20 July 2021, for more information.

All employers and businesses, including those in the ICT sector, must comply with the MTI and MOM nation-wide advisories in all workplaces and workplace settings.

The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) and SGTech have set out additional measures for certain workplace settings specific to the ICT sector. These workplace settings are:

  1. Providing onsite IT services, support or manpower at customers’ premises;
  2. Data centre operations; and
  3. ICT retail stores and e-commerce.

Employers and businesses that have operations applicable to these workplace settings must comply, not only with the measures set up by MOM, but also with the following additional measures where applicable. 

I. Providing onsite IT services, support or manpower at customers’ premises

As far as possible, minimise physical meetings, onsite work and provide support and services remotely (e.g. over the phone, teleconference). Measures to enable this could include reviewing the work processes, providing the necessary IT equipment and adopting solutions that enable remote working and IT support.

Employees visiting or working at customers’ premises must comply with the customer site’s safe management requirements (e.g. temperature taking, protective equipment and personal hygiene, maintaining a safe physical distance, reduce and limit physical interactions).

Brief employees on higher risk sites or locations, so that employees can take extra precautions and measures (e.g., hospitals, Government Quarantine Facilities (GQFs), foreign employee dormitories).

Where possible, assign dedicated support teams to customers, or groups of customers, to perform such services. There should not be cross deployment and interaction of teams or members servicing different customers or customer groups. If cross-deployment cannot be avoided (e.g. insufficient employees with required skills), additional safeguards must be taken to minimise the risk of cross infection (e.g. systems are in place to ensure no direct contact with the cross-deployed personnel) and put in place split teams for business continuity.

For businesses using outsourced suppliers or contractors, the same safe management measures and practices must be implemented by these outsourced parties. Interactions amongst all parties (employees, suppliers, customers, etc.) should be kept to a minimum and duration of interaction should be as short as possible. Implement staggered work or scheduling to prevent different teams from mixing.

As far as possible, do not share machinery, tools or equipment across staff, teams or customers. If there are no options (e.g. public kiosks, specialized equipment, etc.) please ensure that these are regularly cleaned and disinfected before changing hands. The sanitation and hygiene advisories disseminated by the National Environmental Agency (NEA) must be adhered to.

Keep records of employees and service providers, on shift and duty roster, and the customers and locations visited.

II. Data Centre Operations

Data centres have additional requirements as the daily operations typically includes the following:

  1. Extended access by specialized personnel and multiple parties – such as employees, vendors and contractors, facilities management, tenants and customers;
  2. Being conducted in dedicated, co-located/multi-tenanted, or part of multi-use facilities (e.g. in the case of smaller data centres, server rooms or companies such as banks hosting their own operations); and
  3. Varied activities onsite, such as expanding rack-space, fitting-out works and IT services.

As far as possible, data centre operators should minimise onsite work. Measures include:

  1. Reviewing the work processes, providing the necessary IT equipment and adopting solutions that enable secure remote access to the relevant system or equipment;
  2. Requiring functions or activities that do not need access to specialized equipment to be conducted from home, such as: business development & strategy, administrative functions (e.g. Human Resources, Finance), procurement & sourcing, sales & marketing;
  3. Informing customers of the technologies available that would allow them to manage their workloads remotely in a secure manner and suggesting to customers to test their ability to respond to events remotely before it becomes necessary to go on site; and
  4. Postponing all non-essential maintenance and projects.

Operators should coordinate safe management measures among all companies involved in the data centre operations (e.g. with third-party facility management and other outsourced services) to ensure that staff are not confused by conflicting requirements and policies.

Interactions amongst all parties (employees, suppliers, customers, etc.) should be kept to a minimum and duration of such interaction should be as short as possible.

Plan for redundant operations by creating teams of mission-critical staff, with each team comprising members that have a mix of skills/experience who can effectively manage the facility. This plan should also include team segregation between sites, and having different teams working in separate workspaces. Team members should also continue to work in the same shift to avoid cross-shift contact.

For work that is usually carried out by different groups, specialists or suppliers:

  1. Implement staggered work hours or scheduling of different activities (e.g. maintenance, testing and commissioning, fitting-out work) to prevent mingling of different teams or companies;
  2. Where possible, there should be no cross deployment of employees to different teams. If cross-deployment cannot be avoided (e.g. insufficient employees with required skills), additional safeguards must be taken to minimise the risk of cross infection (e.g. systems are in place to ensure no direct contact with the cross-deployed personnel); and
  3. Where possible, the staggered or split team arrangement should be consistent or extended to other suppliers or teams along the chain of activities, e.g. Team A should only be working with Team A from a supplier.

The frequency of cleaning and disinfection (as reasonably practicable as possible) for all common spaces should be increased, and all machinery and equipment that the on-site personnel have interacted with to be cleaned or disinfected once per every shift or team change. Ensure that machinery and equipment shared between personnel across different teams, customers or service providers, are cleaned and disinfected before changing hands. The sanitation and hygiene advisories disseminated by the National Environmental Agency (NEA) must be adhered to.

For on-site construction projects that entail major upgrades or extensions of capacity:

  1. Organisations involved should suspend all non-essential projects where possible;
  2. If the project must continue, organisations will need to coordinate with contractors to ensure all safe management measures are adopted by the subcontractors/vendors;
  3. Construction project team members should not interact with the data centre operations team members; and
  4. Construction work activities should also adhere to prevailing MOM, MOH and BCA advisories on this topic.

Only allow scheduled employees and visitors into the data centre. Minimise all unnecessary access and visits.

III. ICT Retail Stores and e-commerce

Companies should comply with prevailing advisory for safe management measures jointly issued by ESG and other government agencies for retail establishments and lifestyle-related services; food & beverage and online retail delivery.

IV. MICE AND work-related events

Companies should comply with prevailing advisory for safe management measures issued by STB for MICE events. For work-related events, such as conferences/seminars and staff training sessions, refer to MOM’s advisory on Requirements for Safe Management Measures at the workplace.

For queries and feedback, please contact IMDA at info@imda.gov.sg and SGTech at info@sgtech.org.sg

For Media Content Production Companies

The Multi-Ministry Taskforce (MTF) announced on 20 July 2021 that Singapore would enter to Phase 2 – Heightened Alert from 22 July 2021 to 18 August 2021. 

Companies will continue their activities subject to safe distancing principles, including measures put in place to ensure that individuals maintain safe distancing of at least 1-metre at all times as a default. Further, all workplaces must continue to comply with the prevailing safe management measures. Strict checks will be conducted and companies that do not provide a safe workplace for workers will have their operations suspended.

Under the Information and Communications sector, companies under the sub-categories of permitted services with SSIC codes 58 to 63 will continue to be allowed to operate in Phase 3 - Heightened Alert. You may login to BizFile+ using CorpPass credentials to find out the necessary information about your SSIC code.

For companies that are involved in content production, refer to “Content Production” below for the Safety Rules.

Content Production

From 22 July 2021 to 18 August 2021, companies should take note of the following rules:

(a) All content productions may proceed with no more than 15 personnel on location, including no more than 10 onscreen talent/performers (who may be unmasked if necessary), at any given time.

(b) Companies registered with IMDA may proceed with no more than 30 personnel on location, including no more than 10 onscreen talent/performers (who may be unmasked if necessary), at any given time.

(c) Filming or recording of “live” singing is limited to no more than 2 singers at any given time, for companies registered with IMDA. For those not registered with IMDA, only companies with SSIC codes starting with 59 may proceed after notifying IMDA (form available under Resources section of the Filming in Singapore page). These singers must observe a 2-metre safe distancing from the next person.

(d) Unmasking dispensations are to be kept strictly to the fixed cast of onscreen talent/performers (not interchangeable with other non-onscreen performing roles) for the entire production.

(e) No on-site audiences should be present on location; all personnel should comprise only talent/performers (i.e. cast), crew, and staff.

(f) There should not be more than 2 distinct visitors per day for occupied households under social gathering rules, which may affect filming.

For more details, please refer to our Filming in Singapore page, the Mandatory Safety Rules for the Resumption of Content Production and accompanying FAQs endorsed by IMDA, and the links to the Comprehensive Safety Measures posted by the Association of Independent Producers (AIPRO) and Singapore Association of Motion Picture Professionals (SAMPP). Both documents are collectively put together by media industry representatives and associations.

For Cinemas

Capacity Limits

From 22 July to 18 August 2021, the capacity limits of cinemas are up to 50 pax (without Pre-event Testing) or up to 100 pax (with Pre-Event Testing), with one-metre safe distancing between different groups of patrons for each cinema hall. 

Permissible Group Size

Permissible group size will be maximum of 2 persons. Dining in and consumption of Food & Beverage in the cinemas is prohibited. Cinema patrons and staff must keep their mask on at all times. 

Cinemas must comply with the Mandatory Safe Management Measures (SMM) for Cinemas (153.89KB). For more details on operating guidelines, please refer to the Best Practices for Cinema Operators (309.99KB) and FAQs for the Reopening of Cinemas (201.61KB).

Cinemas refer to Golden Village, Cathay Cineplexes, Shaw Theatres, Filmgarde, WE Cinemas, The Projector, Eaglewing Cinematics, Carnival Cinemas and Salt Media@Capital Tower. Other establishments with screening venues that are allowed to reopen, must also comply with the mandatory SMMs for Cinemas.

For Arts Entertainment Stakeholders

Arts Entertainment Events

On 20 July 2021, the Multi-Ministry Taskforce (MTF) announced further tightening of measures to arrest the community spread of COVID-19. The latest measures will take effect from 22 July through 18 August 2021.

From 22 July through 18 August 2021, group sizes for all arts and culture activities are limited to no more than 2 persons.  Audiences will be capped at 50 pax (without pre-event testing) or 100 pax (with pre-event testing).  A maximum of 30 performers and crew will continue to be allowed on stage and backstage.  All performers on stage must be properly masked at all times, and face shields are not allowed as a substitute for masks.  There must also be no singing, and no playing of instruments that require intentional expulsion of air (e.g. wind instruments), even if masked, in all live performances.

Live performances in non-permitted (including outdoor live performances) are not allowed to take place, except for approved pilots.  The National Arts Council (NAC) and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) are accepting applications for live performance pilots up to 50 audience members if no pre-event testing is conducted, or up to 100 audience members if pre-event is conducted. The application form can be found in the “[Updated] Live Performance Pilot Events” section on NAC’s website.

For the latest updates and details of the Safe Management Measures that are put in place for the Arts Entertainment sector, please refer to the relevant Advisories issued by the National Arts Council and National Heritage Board.

For more information, and for the latest updates on the COVID-19 situation, please visit the MOH’s website or call its hotline at 1800 333 9999.

For further queries or clarifications, please contact IMDA at info@imda.gov.sg or at 6377 3800.