In Focus
HR & EDUCATION | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Business expansion created 26,500 jobs in 2018

 ICT roles such as chief information officers, database designers & administrators and IT security specialists were in hot demand.

Job vacancies in Singapore inched up to 63,300 in 2018, of which 26,500 were newly created positions as a result of business formation and expansion, according to the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) job vacancies report.

These positions were commonly from community, social & personal services (education, healthcare), manufacturing (electronics, transport equipment) and information & communications.

The proportion of vacancies unfilled for at least six months held steady at 34%. Non-PMET vacancies remained harder to fill than PMET openings. Almost half or 49% of non-PMET jobs were unfilled for at least six months, compared to 21% for PMET openings.

Employers continued to indicate unattractive pay, physically strenuous job nature, work on weekends/public holidays and shift work as reasons that made non-PMET openings, in particular service-related jobs, unattractive to locals.

“On the other hand, the lack of candidates with the necessary specialised skills or work experience were the top reasons for hard-to-fill PMET openings,” MOM said.

Meanwhile, more employers looked beyond academic qualifications when hiring, with the proportion of PMET openings where academic qualification was not a main consideration edging up from 42% in 2017 to 52% in 2018. For these positions including software, web & multimedia developers, systems analysts and commercial & marketing sales executives, employers placed stronger emphasis on skills or relevant working experience instead.

As more firms reinvent themselves and build digital capabilities, vacancies related to technology development and implementation have been on the rise. ICT roles such as chief information officers, database designers & administrators and IT security specialists (e.g. cyber security) saw significant growth in vacancies over the last five years. In terms of numbers, software, web & multimedia developers and systems analysts continued to be amongst the top PMET jobs.

Finance, marketing and business development positions (e.g. commercial & marketing sales executives, business development managers, financial/ investment advisers and sales & marketing managers) were also amongst the top PMET jobs in demand. In addition, there was a growing demand for compliance officers or risk analysts in regulatory and risk assessment functions.

For non-PMET positions, whilst vacancies for cleaners, shop sales assistants and security guards ranked at the top, there was a decline in their demand with ongoing industry transformation efforts. On the other hand, healthcare assistants saw an increase in vacancies, amidst rising healthcare demand. 

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