Singapore odd nation out in Asian job market

by Miklos Bolza05 Aug 2015
Singapore is the only major East Asian country in which the volume of job advertisements has fallen from 2014 to 2015.
 
These results come from the latest Morgan Stanley survey, Asia Job Index Q2 2015, which tracked job ads on leading recruitment websites and newspapers in Singapore, China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Malaysia.
 
In Singapore, the total number of job ads decreased by three per cent over the past year. This was vastly different to the regional Asian average which saw an 11% increase and reveals the unique recruitment trends that Singaporean employers have to follow.
 
“The annual dip in job advertising [in Singapore] this quarter did not come as a surprise. What we have seen is a softening in the investment banking market, which has resulted in some banks downsizing and off-shoring to cheaper locations,” said Toby Fowlston, managing director of Morgan Stanley for Southeast Asia.
 
This decline in investment banking has affected a number of other industries, causing an overall weaker quarter when compared to the second quarter of 2014. These sectors include:
  • Accounting & finance which saw a seven per cent decrease
  • Legal & compliance which saw an eight per cent decrease
The report also mentioned ad growth in a number of other fields. IT had the strongest change with a 10% increase of year-on-year job advertisements across the nation. This shows the high demand for workers within this field as well as the use of new recruiting technology.
 
“Due to the surge in e-commerce and mobile applications, candidates with the relevant skill sets are seeing multiple job opportunities,” Fowlston said. “Hence, senior decision makers need to be more involved in the recruitment process to ensure they make swift assessments and decisions to secure the best professionals.”
 
The expanded digital space has also affected the Singapore marketing industry with a three per cent growth in job ads reported. In particular, workers experienced in e-commerce, social media and consumer media consumption were the fields most highly sought after.
 
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