in collaboration with Ministry of Manpower Singapore (2015)

When foreign workers (Work Pass holders) start to work in Singapore, there are a number of rules and employee rights they should be aware of. Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has been trying to communicate such information through various means, including different types of collaterals and posters, road shows, websites and hotlines, SMS etc.

MOM’s information is often delivered through intermediaries, such as employers or employment agencies. In addition, the coverage of roadshows and collaterals is limited. Communication through mobile technologies has not been successful, either. As a large number of foreign workers use pre-paid phone cards, their contact numbers often change. Foreign workers also have limited data plan for using a smart phone. Language barriers and technology illiteracy have made the situation more challenging.

Through cross-department collaboration, MOM wants to achieve a shared understanding of foreign workers’ needs and MOM’s future strategies. Therefore, we’ve narrowed down to 3 focus areas as the project brief. Namely, effective and engaging communication on general work-related rules and rights, compliance with work safety rules and responsibilities and re-designing the engagement process of Special Pass holders. 


This project is a collaboration with Ministry of Manpower in Singapore to enhance the engagement and communication of foreign workers with a special pass (SP).

Taking into consideration language barriers and culture differences across the different nationalities of lower skilled workers, a service-product solution is proposed to ensure workers opt for the most viable option available to them. Key insights that we have identified through shadowing and interviews led us to our design solution where we week to educate and effectively communicate with SP holders without heavily relying on translators. At the same time, to encourage more SP holders to take up Temporary-Job Scheme (TJS) by streamlining the entire application process.


Project by Yeo Limay, Eunice Er & Matthew Wong


ATOM: A Worker's Help is an interface developed in conjunction with the Ministry of Manpower, Singapore. It is an interface meant for the implementation in ATMs (Automated Teller Machines) to help MOM reach out to the large population of low-skilled foreign workers in Singapore

With a population of over 1.2 million foreign workers in Singapore, ATOM is able to reach out to almost 100% of them by making use of the fact that ATMs are a necessity in their lives.

By the process of doing user research and going on the ground to meet foreign workers, the team identified with their difficulties in fitting into a working environment so far away from home. This was the solution that was convenient and intuitive to them, and allowed them to receive help from MOM without having learn additional interfaces.


Project by Grace Ng, Magdalene Huang & Florian Dach


Information categories and dissemination methods were re-designed to be more context-sensitive and relevant to the foreign workers’ real needs. To make navigation easier, an index was added to the existing handy guide. A mobile app of the e-Handy Guide was designed to enable easier access to information. It also includes a salary calculator, allowing them to keep track of their accumulated overtime hours and overall monthly pay. For more engaging outreach, MOM mobile trucks conduct visits to foreign workers’ hang-out areas and small dormitories, providing free wi-fi while introducing the e-handy guide to them. 

Project by Edmund Zhang, Lim Xinyuan, Koh Jing Ting