Tax professionals and financial planning and analysis professionals are among the stkills in demand as organisations in Singapore invest selectively in headcount to drive business growth, according to recruiting experts Hays in Singapore.
The recruiter has released its latest Hays Quarterly Hotspots list of jobs in demand, and a driving factor is the focus of organisations on making changes and growing their business.
“Employers are looking for people who can help them make informed business decisions,” says Chris Mead, Regional Director of Hays in Singapore and Malaysia. “Business development remains a focus, as does maintaining costs where possible.
“Demand is not evident in every function in every location, but there are pockets of specific skill shortages,” he said.
“Employers are replacing departing staff and making selective staff investments in roles that can add immediate value to their business.”
But he warns that employers have high expectations when they recruit. “Employers will only make job offers to the top tier candidates. They are still looking for specific skills and background that matches their industry.”
According to the Hays Quarterly Hotspots list, demand exists for the following skilled professionals in Singapore:
Tax Professionals – We are seeing high demand for these candidates in both direct and in-direct tax. There are a limited number of indirect candidates available in Singapore and we have recently been sourcing these candidates from overseas. Candidates with regional exposure and commercial experience are highly desired by employers as they are not looking to train new entrants.
Pricing - Companies are looking for candidates with pricing experience from their relevant industry as they do not wish to train people. Companies will pay a premium for a candidate who possesses the required skill set.
Risk and Regulatory Reporting, Compliance and Internal Controls - All of these skills are in high demand as they share the same synergies focusing on tighter controls as well as more in depth and regular reporting. These skills are expected to stay in high demand in the banking sector. There is increased importance in the current market for local regulatory reporting such as MAS.
Quantity Surveyors – Candidates who have the flexibility to work in both head office and on site are in high demand. These candidates are mainly sought after by companies who are competing in the building and civil service infrastructure sector. Candidates who have local experience and are aware of local suppliers have a great advantage when applying for these roles.
Construction/Project Managers and Tunnel Managers – Sections of the upcoming Thomson Line will soon be awarded, and we expect to see the successful contractors attract Construction/Project Managers and Tunnel Managers to their roles and away from their existing employers. Once contracts are released, we will see a lot of candidate interest and movement as professionals are drawn to the opportunity to work on this new project.
Telesales/Telemarketing - This field is not a highly desired specialty for many candidates due to the need to conduct cold calls. As a result companies are facing a constant demand for these candidates.
Structural Design Engineers – Due to the ongoing expansion of underground infrastructure projects within Singapore and South East Asia, experienced Structural Design Engineers are in high demand. Companies are now urgently seeking highly skilled and professionally recognised candidates with a wealth of expertise with underground tunnelling projects.
Developers (Core C++/C#/Java) – As there is currently an increased focus on the development of front office trading systems all of the major banks are looking for candidates with niche development skill to manage them.
Compensation & Benefits – Human resources departments are prioritizing this area as they see great benefits in finding new and innovative ways to not only reward their staff but to attract and retain them.
Mobile Developers (Android, iOS) – Rapid growth of mobile platforms such as Android and iOS has increased the demand for Mobile Developers with the skill set to further develop these applications.
Cloud Sales/Pre-sales – System Integrators, Vendors and Service Providers are rolling out cloud solutions platforms in a bid to keep up to date in the fast growing market. As a result they are competing to hire sales and pre-sales professionals with cloud solutions experience.
FP&A/Management Accountants - Singapore provides opportunities for growth for international and local businesses. The majority of global insurers have head offices overseas and senior management needed to see how and where their business is performing in the Asian market.
Corporate Secretariat Managers - As a reflection of high demand for corporate governance and transparency, businesses now seek seasoned corporate secretariat candidates to strategically manage the growth and expansion of their companies.
Medical Sales Representatives - With new product launches, life sciences companies are seeking additional Medical Sales Representatives to do promotional projects with relevant physicians and key opinion leaders in the specified therapeutic area prior to their official launch.
Office Managers – These are newly created roles in Singapore so candidates are limited and in high demand.
Oil & gas Senior Project Managers - Construction of offshore structures for the oil & gas industry continues to create demand for Senior Project Managers. There are few candidates with experience delivering large projects of US$150 million value, particularly with FPSO and topside experience. As a result employers are seeking candidates globally rather than locally. Demand is driven by Singapore’s current status as a regional and global hub for the design and construction of offshore rigs, FPSO, FSO and topside structures.
Indirect Managers - There is still a shortage of indirect procurement specialists within Singapore, especially those with strong regional sourcing and vendor management experience. In particular, employers are seeking category experts to make savings across IT and telecoms, facilities management, HR, travel and other areas. The majority of candidates coming into the market have a direct procurement background, especially those leaving the manufacturing sector, meaning there can be a mismatch between employers' requirements and the available local talent.
Property Managers – Developers and REITs are seeking candidates with existing experience to manage their industrial, retail or A-grade commercial properties. Employers of specialised or high end buildings are finding it difficult to find candidates with the relevant experience.
Regional Business Developers: Singapore businesses are focusing on their sales and development in new and emerging markets which is causing a high demand for Regional Business Developers.
Internal Communications: Companies are looking at candidates with strong skills in change management and internal communications in the wake of recent cost saving initiatives.
Demand & Supply Planners – These specialists are in demand to make business forecasts. These professionals can give a business optimal profits and stock levels while minimizing or eliminating costs incurred from overstock.