SINGAPORE: Those looking to work in retail should be able to find a job, if preliminary figures released by the Ministry of Manpower on Tuesday (Dec 23) are anything to go by.
A total of 3,730 job vacancies were available for shop sales assistants as of September 2014, with vacancies for security guards coming in second at 2,250. The demand for wait staff came in third at 2,200, with vacancies for teaching professionals coming in a close fourth at 1,770.
There were 67,400 job vacancies in total for September 2014, MOM had announced on Dec 15.
VACANCIES BY INDUSTRY
When grouped by industry, the community, social and personal services sector had the most number of vacancies at 13,040. The sector includes jobs such as teaching professionals, registered nurses and healthcare assistants.
The industry with the second-highest number of openings was the wholesale and retail trade industry at 8,750 vacancies, within which shop sales assistants are included. Manufacturing – which includes pipe fitters, mechanical engineers and machine-tool setter-operators – came in third with 8,330 openings.
VACANCIES BY QUALIFICATION
For September’s data, the Manpower Ministry showed that most of the vacancies – 14,720 – required Primary School level education and below. This was for jobs such as cleaners, waiters and security guards.
A total of 13,060 job vacancies – for jobs such as software, web and multimedia developer – required a degree and above.
One expert Channel NewsAsia spoke to said in order to attract Singaporeans to lower-paying jobs where most of the vacancies are, pay and professionalism have to be raised.
“We also need to recognise the competency and the knowledge which these people bring along and at the same time, we need to reward the experience these people bring to jobs,” said Mr David Ang, Director of Corporate Services at Human Capital Singapore. “Professionalising also means that we have to give the respect for which these people are due, in terms of their customer service and delivery of services.”
Mr Ang said due to labour restrictions placed by the authorities, the costs of hiring a Singaporean are now comparable to those of employing foreign workers. But because Singaporeans may job-hop, some employers still prefer hiring foreign workers, as they can be contracted.
He said going forward, the challenge is for employers and human resource personnel to study how to structure packages that will retain Singaporean employees, through fairer wages, more flexi-work arrangements and an engaging and challenging job scope.
news source & image credits: channelnewsasia.com