Thukten Zangpo

The Druk Holding and Investments (DHI) and its company, the only government-owned and holding company in the country, provides attractive career prospects, as well as compensations.

It has become more attractive with the salary revision which came into effect towards the end last year where DHI and its companies increased their salaries by 60 percent of minimum basic pay for all regular employees.

This was in response to the pay revision for civil servants of between 55 to 74 percent in July last year to meet the rising cost of living. It was followed by the salary revision for State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) of between 46 to 72 percent of the minimum basic pay in October last year. Some SOEs contended with lower percent raises.

With the revision, for example, a fresh graduate in grade 8 at DHI and its companies would receive a gross monthly salary of Nu 46, 908, which is Nu 6, 308 higher than the gross monthly salary of Nu 40, 600 of a civil servant at the same level.

However, employees in SOEs at the same grade would receive Nu 37, 751 monthly, which is less than Nu 9, 157.

The salary revision is expected to cost DHI and its companies an additional Nu 1.4 billion annually, or an increase in the cost of pay and allowance by 26.13 percent.

One of the DHI company’s human resource officers, said that the impact of the pay raise in attracting the employees in real time is not known currently, given the short period of pay raise.  He said that DHI and its companies are not facing difficulty in recruitment.

The Human Resource Officer said that the salary increase will increase the company’s expenses or cost and could affect the dividend transferred to the government as dividends are drawn from the company’s profit.

However, he added that the company does not compromise on the targeted profit for the year, otherwise, it would impact the company’s performance based variable incentives.

The significant difference in pay structure in DHI and its companies was attracting civil servants and employees of SOEs.

After a decade in state-owned enterprises (SOEs), Phuntsho is considering seeking employment in the DHI and its companies, and had recently applied for a job in one of the DHI companies.

Similarly, a human resource officer in one of the ministries, Sonam, who has been more than a decade in the office also has plans to join the DHI companies. Considering the comparable risk and workload between DHI companies and government agencies, he said that he would prioritise a higher salary.

A chief executive officer of a SOEs said that the employees were content with the recent pay revision. He added while there are instances of employees choosing to go abroad, there has not been a single case of employees leaving for DHI and its companies; if there were any, it would be based on competency.

He added that employees would also prefer stability in their jobs, and there were rumours that some SOEs would either close or merge.