Business Expansion Will Drive Employment Growth for Finance Professionals in Singapore

Accounting, finance and IT professionals will be in hot demand during the first half of 2014 as businesses expand their products, services and reach.


According to the Robert Half Employment Report for the first half of 2014, released by specialist recruitment firm Robert Half, confidence in the Singapore economy has increased, setting the platform for a period of expansion in 2014.


Robert Half's research is based on a survey of more than 400 corporate leaders in Singapore: 150 senior leaders from the banking and finance services sector; 150 CFOs from the commercial sector companies; and 103 Chief Information Officers (CIOs).


Jump in confidence levels
The survey found confidence levels have jumped compared to last year, resulting in a push for growth that will drive employment activity for the next six months.


All three groups are significantly more confident in the economic outlook for Singapore.   CFOs working in the commercial or commerce and industry sector are the most optimistic with confidence levels jumping from 78 per cent last year to 93 per cent this year.


Expansion will drive hiring activity
As a result of their optimism, the next six months will see a boost in hiring activity as companies scout for new talent to fuel their expansion plans.


For senior business leaders working in the banking or financial services sector, 43 per cent plan to add new permanent staff, with 46 per cent maintaining current levels.  Another 10 per cent are freezing all new hires while only 1 per cent intend to reduce headcount. 


On the CFOs working in the commerce and industry sector, 45 per cent will plan to add new permanent finance and accounting staff, while 53 per cent will be maintaining their current headcount.  Only three per cent are freezing all new hires and none forecast a reduction in headcount.Recruitment of technology professionals will be slightly less active than for finance and accounting professionals with 35 per cent of CIOs planning to add new permanent staff, 59 per cent maintaining current levels, five per cent freezing all new hires and one per cent are looking to reduce headcount. 


Stella Tang, Director of Robert Half Singapore said new jobs are being created as companies go for growth.


"Business leaders are increasing their permanent headcount because they are brimming with confidence about their economic prospects," commented Tang. "Last year new hires were mainly to fill jobs cut during the financial crisis.  This year the new hires are for new jobs to drive growth plans."

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