DBS Group Holdings Ltd | Annual Report 2012
Report 2012



People are at the heart of banking and we are committed to creating sustainable job opportunities in the economies we operate in.

The ability to continuously attract, retain and develop talent is key to our success. We bring out the best in our people by building a culture that values empowerment, accountability, teamwork and inclusiveness. We build a conducive work environment for our employees to interact, ideate and collaborate with one another. We constantly provide our people with development opportunities so that they are able to grow personally and professionally, and build fulfilling careers while having fun.


DBS has 18,000 employees across 15 markets, of which more than half are based outside Singapore. We empower our employees with a broad suite of programmes and enable them to drive their careers based on their aspirations. We are committed to helping our people learn, grow and excel in their jobs. We have a strong performance culture, supported by a robust performance management system, aligned to the Group scorecard. This scorecard is cascaded throughout the organisation and drives every employee’s goals and key performance indicators.

Women account for 58% of our employees and one-third of our leadership positions. Five of our 20 most senior leaders in the Management Committee are women heading key businesses and support functions.

We continue to work towards being an employer of choice: one that invests in our people to help them realise their personal and career aspirations.

Five of DBS’ 20 most senior leaders in the management committee are women. They are (from left to right) Jeanette Wong, Tan Su Shan, Chng Sok Hui, Karen Ngui and Lee Yan Hong.


Our employee development programme enables our people to broaden their exposure across various businesses and markets. We believe that grooming our own people to take on larger roles is necessary to retain talent, institutionalise skill sets developed over time, as well as to develop and embed our corporate culture. In 2010, we rolled out an internal mobility policy to encourage our people to move into new roles every few years. In 2012, more than one-quarter of our positions were filled internally; among senior positions, more than three-quarters were filled this way. The reverse was true two years ago – at that time, threequarters of senior positions were filled via external hires.

The DBS Academy, an in-house school with centres in Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai, creates training programmes under a framework that aligns learning and development initiatives with business objectives. The programmes develop our employees across six core competencies: leadership, customer focus, performance and results orientation, innovation and change management, teamwork and professional excellence. They are designed to support employees’ career progression and develop professional staff who can deliver a differentiated client experience. We carried out more than 137,000 training days in 2012, or an average of more than seven days of training per employee.

For individuals with the potential to take on leadership positions, we have a talent development programme that enables us to build a succession pipeline across the organisation from fresh university graduates to senior leaders. The structured development programme comprises training, experiential learning, mentoring and internal mobility. For the senior levels of our talent programme, we provided rotation and enhanced roles for more than 20 senior leaders in 2012.


We take a total approach to remuneration, which consists of fixed pay and discretionary variable remuneration that depends on performance as measured by the Group scorecard. For further details on our remuneration policy, please see page 63 of the Corporate Governance Report.


We believe in communicating with our employees and value their views and feedback. We hold regular townhalls for the Group, individual businesses and countries and send out periodic Groupwide and local newsletters. In addition, we have an intranet forum called “Ask Piyush” that enables employees to pose questions directly to the CEO or share their views with him. The topics are wide-ranging and span strategy, customer service, culture and employment matters. The feedback has led to improvements in policies and practices.

We believe the future of work is collaborative. Our new headquarters, DBS Asia Central at Singapore’s iconic Marina Bay Financial Centre, is designed to foster interaction, collaboration and teamwork, which we believe is key to generating new ideas and improving productivity. We created social hubs with panoramic views of Singapore’s skyline on each floor. These spaces encourage spontaneous interaction, exchange of ideas and bonding among our employees, allowing us to better shape the future of banking.

Our new headquarters is designed to foster interaction, collaboration and teamwork.

We developed a package of benefits and rewards called DBS Cares to show appreciation to our employees. The package includes preferential rates when employees take a loan or make a deposit, long-service awards and time off to celebrate occasions such as birthdays.

Recognising that employees have different needs depending on their career and life stage, we also have a comprehensive suite of flexi-work programmes and schemes that they can choose from depending on their individual circumstances. Employees have the option of flexibility in working hours, working part-time, working from home or taking no-pay leave of up to a year. These arrangements are intended to help employees manage their work and family responsibilities.

Most importantly, staff engagement levels have improved significantly. We now rank among the top 10% of all financial institutions and companies surveyed by Gallup. In particular, our employees value the opportunities they have to learn and grow, and they also believe they have made good progress in the previous six months. The improved staff engagement is corroborated by a 23% reduction in voluntary departures in 2012 from the previous year.

Our efforts have also been recognised. We garnered the Best Leadership Development Award by the Singapore affiliate of the Centre of Creative Leadership, an internationally-recognised provider of executive programmes. We were also the winner of Singapore’s 100 Leading Graduate Employers in the Insurance and Financial Services sector.