In 2017 Financial technology has taken a centre stage in Malaysia and it is broadly defined as technological innovation in financial services which inevitably will disrupt the traditional financial market.
Financial Technology (Fintech), Automation, Digitalisation and outsourcing in the banking industry is also disrupting the lives of bank workers globally and NUBE members are not exempted from this.
However, these four challenges can be successfully implemented without affecting the lives of the workers if it is carried out with proper planning and engagement with all stakeholders.
Unfortunately, the Government’s only advise to the workforce is that this is unavoidable as a result of Industrial Revolution 4.0 and there will be job losses but these will be complimented by Voluntary/Mutual Separation Schemes (VSS/MSS) and assurances of new jobs created.
Well, we are not seeing these new jobs; and, the real challenge is that the existing workers are being forced out of work. So it is misleading to say that though jobs will be lost, new ones will be created. Also, not all workers who opt for the VSS/MSS are success or are able to be gainfully employed again.
Malaysian Government and Bank Negara Malaysia have been overzealous in implementing technology in the financial industry without taking into account the livelihood of the workers who has been contributing immensely to the financial institution.
They are suppose to remind the capitalist the value of Workers and Unions but they, themselves have forgotten the social nature of economy of business and have failed to prepare the workforce for these changes, they have failed to ensure up-skilling and re-skilling of workers to prepare for the future of work. Politicians are busy deviating from the real issues to racial and religious issues despite 60 years of independence.
Government, it’s agencies and employers must be reminded that person and work are two words which can and must stand together. If we talk about work without person, work becomes inhumane.
We too must be reminded that a person without work is someone incomplete or partial and has no social life and he/she does not flourish in life. Therefore, the act of replacing humans with technology or robots it is an immoral act.
The Government has a higher moral obligation to be honest and equitable to the population so that the workers in this country will reap the benefit of the fruits from 60 years of development and are able to move forward instead of being deprived the right to decent livelihood, equitable share of the nation’s wealth, peace and harmony.
This disruptive trend is adding to the existing income inequality, high cost of living, unfavourable labour policies, imbalanced sharing of the wealth of the nation and a struggle for living wage.
Our Collective Agreement (CA) is expiring end of this year and a proposal for new CA will take its position next month. We will need all NUBE members to unite together so that we can have a desired CA for the next three years. In this CA we will need to address not just our economic needs but largely our dignity at work, job security and social protection because without employment, all income will be lost.
Delegates, Branch Committees, IRCs and Members of NUBE it is now the most crucial period in our career in the Banking and Financial industry and we need to be more united than before as our working life and family life is at a crossroads with the madness of 4.0 Industrial Revolution.
Therefore Bros and Sis we need to have solidarity at its peak amongst us so that we can overcome these challenges.
While at work, let us give our best to the job that we are doing with utmost focus so that banks will produce more profits and we can have an equitable share of the profits and work harmoniously at the workplace.
Let us also prepare our mind to work in solidarity with NUBE for a better 2018 for us and our families.
On behalf of the National Executive Council I extend our gratitude for your support in 2017 and we strongly believe with your continuous support for 2018 we will be successful in all our endeavors.
For those celebrating Christmas, we wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas filled love, joy and peace.
For all, we wish you happy holidays, happiness, peace, good health and a better 2018.