A majority or 90% of businesses in Singapore are planning to increase or maintain headcount in 2013, reveals the latest Regus Business Confidence Index.
The survey of more than 26,000 businesses across 90 countries highlighted a strong emphasis on recruiting more sales and marketing staff in Singapore. This positivity bolsters a business confidence index score which has increased in Singapore since October 2012.
Globally, the Regus Business Confidence Index stands at 114 points, up 3 points from October 2012.
The Business Confidence Index for Singapore is currently at 129 – an increase of 8 points from October 2012 and above the global average of 114.
Local businesses are reflecting increased confidence, with 58% of Singapore businesses reporting rising revenues and 52% increased profits over the past twelve months. As a result, more than 90% of businesses are looking to maintain or increase their headcount for 2013 especially for sales and marketing related positions.
With so many companies planning on hiring and the new limitations on hiring foreigners, local businesses may be hard pressed to retain the best local talents, who will be exposed to more job opportunities in the coming months. The hardest hit will be small businesses, whom are expressing the strongest intent to hire. They will have to avoid costly overheads and remain nimble and scalable in the face of rapid market changes in order to remain attractive to prospective employees and sustain continued growth.
The Index reveals that a third of businesses (35%) plan to increase headcount by more than 5%. Meanwhile, 60% think firms will hire more sales & marketing employees and 48% highlight operational staff.
“The stand out figures are not just that firms are looking to recruit but that their plan is to invest in sales and marketing, this shows that companies feel it’s the right time to go out there and sell," says John Henderson of global workspace provider Regus.
Hendersen notes these results suggest that sales and marketing professional will be in high demand in the coming months. He adds that businesses need to consider how to recruit and retain the best in the field, ensuring they can remain competitive in their market.
“All trends indicate that offering flexible working will move from a ‘nice to have’ perk to a necessary condition of employment, being key to securing and retaining the best employees for any company. As, younger people come into the workforce they have a very different attitude to work, placing flexibility and quality of life above more traditional considerations. But flexible working also brings additional benefits helping businesses cut fixed office space costs and increase staff productivity."
Globally, 85% of businesses are planning to increase or maintain headcount in 2013, with one in four going for an expansion of more than 5%.
A remarkable 57% aim to bolster sales and marketing departments. A large rise in operational hires (40%) is anticipated to service new sales. Small businesses – traditionally an engine of economic recovery – are most likely to take on significant numbers of new staff (28%).
The Index also reveals that firms trading overseas continue to outperform those that don’t.