Hays: Flexible Staffing Becoming the Norm in Singapore With Levels Remaining Fairly Steady Year-on-Year

Over half of Singapore employers (51 per cent) used temporary staffing in the last year, according to the 2017 Hays Asia Salary Guide. This is a slight drop on the previous year when 54 per cent of employers across Singapore engaged in flexible staffing arrangements.

The annual Hays Salary Guide is based on candidate and employer research including a survey of more than 3,000 employers across China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore representing over six million employees. The Guide, now in its tenth year, also provides the salary ranges for more than 1,200 roles.

The 2017 Guide reveals that of the employers in Singapore making use of flexible arrangements, 65 per cent engaged contractors or temporary staff through a recruitment firm and 37 per cent employed part time staff.

A further 26 per cent of employers hired casual employees on their own pay roll in the past year while 14 per cent made use of job sharing arrangements and 12 per cent used some other form of temporary staffing.

Plans to increase temporary staff

This year 19 per cent of respondents in Singapore expect to increase their use of temporary staff while 67 per cent plan to maintain current levels of flexible staffing. Just 14 per cent of employers plan to decrease their use of flexible staffing.

Across all countries, 21 per cent of the employers surveyed expect to increase their use of temporary and or contract staffing while 65 per cent expect their level of engagement to remain the same as last year.

Approximately 21 per cent of Singapore’s employers use temporary staff on an on going basis while 42 per cent bring in temporary and contract staff just to work on special projects. A further 30 per cent report only using temporary or contract staff in “exceptional circumstances” and only seven per cent have never utilized flexible staffing arrangements.

“This year promises to be fast moving and characterized by expected and unexpected change making it more important than ever for employers to be able to tap into the contingent workforce when needed,” says Lynne Roeder, Managing Director of Hays Singapore.

“It’s significant that 19 per cent of employers expect to increase their use of temporary staff and contractors this year and a further 67 per cent plan on maintaining their current level of flexible staffing.”

“Flexible work options are also highly valued by employees and 67 per cent of employers in Singapore currently offer flexible work practices, but there is still room to grow as 33 per cent of employers are yet to introduce flexibility at work according to the results of our 2017 Guide,” says Lynne.

The most commonly offered flexible work options in Singapore are:

• Flexible working hours/compressed working weeks (offered by 64 per cent of the employers surveyed)

• Flex-place, such as working from home or alternative location (offered by 56 per cent) 

• Part-time employment (41 per cent)

• Career breaks/sabbatical (19 per cent)

• Increased maternity/paternity leave (17 per cent)

• Flexible leave options, such as purchased leave (13 per cent)

• Job sharing (10 per cent)

• Phased retirement (two per cent)

“Singapore has a sophisticated workforce and many candidates now value a range of working conditions that improve the quality of their lives as much as they do salary and benefits. In fact, of the candidates expecting to stay with their current employer this year, the majority (47 per cent) nominated ‘work-life balance’ as the reason for their decision ahead of salary or benefits (nominated by 34 per cent of respondents),” says Lynne.

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