Singapore Maintains Strong Recruitment Outlook

Hiring intentions remain steadily optimistic in Singapore, with 43.8% of employers expecting to increase headcount (down 4.9pp) according to the latest Hudson Report: Employment Trends. Employers intending to keep headcount steady have increased 3.0 percentage points (pp) to 51.7%.


“These results demonstrate the buoyancy of Singapore’s recruitment market,” says Andrew Tomich, Executive General Manager, Hudson Singapore. “Business confidence is high with the expected rise in Singapore’s GDP to 2.9% on the back of robust service growth and low unemployment.”


“However, with the difficult global market conditions, Singapore employers are taking a considered approach to making new hires,” added Tomich. “We have seen the recruitment process lengthen to ensure the right hires are being made, with increased activity in filling roles that have been held open for an extended period of time.”


Singapore is an international hub for Banking & Financial Services and hiring intentions for the industry have increased 6.2pp to 42.6%. “This increased demand is being driven by a focus on business critical roles, such as front office sales and back office risk and compliance positions,” said Tomich.


Hiring intentions in the Consumer sector also increased, up 6.4pp to 48.9%. “We are seeing new roles coming into the Consumer market, particularly in the area of corporate services such as human resources and sales,” said Tomich.


The report revealed little movement in the contracting market, with intention to hire down 2.0pp to 23.5% and intention to maintain headcount up 2.1pp to 73.3%.


The strongest recruitment outlook for contractors is in Manufacturing, where none of the employers surveyed intend to decrease headcount.


“Contracting is a good way to counter the economic conditions and in Manufacturing we are seeing demand for human resources, accountancy and supply chain procurement positions,” notes Tomich.


The report also looked into how organisations are supporting people as they transition into new leadership roles.


The research found that 70.6% of Singapore organisations provide targeted support to leaders transitioning to new roles. The most frequently used techniques to support transitions were internal development programs (79.4%) and coaching (70.0%).


“Smart talent management is key to achieving business success and the development and retention of staff are critical factors,” said Tomich. “Employers have to look at succession planning, lifting the capability of their people and ask themselves how new hires will add value to their businesses.


“Developing leadership skills in the workforce is essential, particularly for people transitioning into new or first-time leadership positions. Poor leadership will often result in reduced team performance and productivity, lower engagement and increased turnover, so people stepping into new leadership roles need corporate support to ensure success.”


Common issues that can derail new leaders include: focusing too heavily on details, reacting negatively to criticism, intimidating others, jumping to hasty conclusions and micromanaging direct reports.


According to the report, each new leadership role has its own individual challenges that need to be met, and areas that typically need to be addressed include:

  • One-on-one support to identify and address personal styles that can be detrimental to effective leadership, and to help build leadership capability
  • Corporate inductions to help transitioning leaders better understand systems and processes and how to navigate their way around the organisation
  • A sponsor to assist with introduction to the organisation and building relationships
  • Organisations proactively identifying future leaders and building their leadership skills and knowledge before they transition to a new leadership role

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