Despite the slower economic and employment growth, Singapore employees remained confident with 67 per cent believing they could secure a job at a different employer within six months. These findings were highlighted in a recently released Randstad Workmonitor Year-in-Review for 2015.
On releasing the MOM Labour Market Advance Release 2015, Jaya Dass, Country Director – Randstad Singapore comments, “Despite the slowed employment growth due to the global economic outlook, we remain optimistic as the Ministry of Manpower Labour Market Advance Release statistics do not point to any clear signs of recession. A primary indicator of this is that unemployment has continued to remain low and stable.”
Additionally, the median income rose sharply for Singaporeans in 2015, by 7% in real terms, showcasing employer confidence in the market as well as a growing understanding around the importance of offering higher salaries as part of their talent retention strategy.
Total employment growth, whilst at its lowest since 2003, is no longer fluctuating strongly. With Q4 2015 numbers higher that of Q3, we expect to see that growth will now stabilise and continued at a moderate pace in 2016, barring unexpected issues or crisis.
The report highlighted that flat local employment growth was contributed to the exit of casual workers in retail trade and slowdown in sectors including manufacturing and real estate. This exit of workers was offset by growth in sectors such as the professional, financial and insurance services.
“We do not expect local employment to stay flat for an extended period of time as local employees’ up skill to fill the current skills gap, and fresh graduates with sought-after specialist skills enter the workforce. Our recent 2016 Market Outlook highlighted that IT talent such as cloud specialists, cyber security experts, as well as engineers, developers and designers with solid mobile experience, are currently lacking in the market.”
Foreign worker employment will continue to grow, but only in specific industries and functions where skill gaps still remain. The Singapore government will continue to focus on maintaining a strong Singaporean core in the workforce with initiatives such as the Fair Consideration Framework.
“Redundancies continue to rise, largely driven by layoffs in manufacturing and services. However we expect companies which are forced to downsize to look at restructuring and realigning their businesses to adapt to current and future challenges. Revamped businesses will be a natural source for new jobs, and layoff numbers will slowly decline in the coming years,” Dass added.
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