S’pore man­agers can ex­pect 5pc pay rise at most this year

New Straits Times - - Business World -

Sin­ga­porean man­agers and se­nior staff can pre­pare for five per cent pay in­creases at most this year as the labour mar­ket sta­bilises.

About 93 per cent of firms here said they would keep or raise head­count this year, ac­cord­ing to a sur­vey by re­cruit­ment con­sul­tancy Michael Page of 450 busi­nesses in the city state. Only 36 per cent said they would re­cruit new hires.

Sin­ga­pore’s un­em­ploy­ment rate re­cently hit a six-year high of 2.2 per cent, though the coun­try still re­mains one of the eas­i­est places in the world to find work.

In Asia, 48 per cent of the 3,400 firms in the sur­vey said they planned to in­crease wages by five per cent or less, com­pared with 58 per cent of Sin­ga­pore-based firms.

“While em­ploy­ers have agreed that salaries are an im­por­tant re­ten­tion tool, other pop­u­lar em­ployee en­gage­ment ini­tia­tives in­clude op­por­tu­ni­ties for ca­reer pro­gres­sion and learn­ing and devel­op­ment,” said the con­sul­tancy.

The hot jobs here are in the dig­i­tal, tech­nol­ogy and health care in­dus­tries, which is where the gov­ern­ment is pledg­ing more in­vest­ment.

In the less buoy­ant fi­nan­cial ser­vices sec­tor, fi­nan­cial tech­nol­ogy jobs should be helped by a fund­ing plan to sup­port lo­cal firms, ac­cord­ing to Michael Page.

The gig econ­omy is also be­com­ing a big­ger fea­ture in Sin­ga­pore’s econ­omy: 68 per cent of all com­pa­nies sur­veyed are us­ing con­trac­tors, es­pe­cially in tech­nol­ogy and busi­ness sup­port in­dus­tries.

More com­pa­nies were adopt­ing strate­gies such as an­nual leave, med­i­cal ben­e­fits and com­ple­tion bonuses to woo more pro­fes­sional con­tract work­ers, said the con­sul­tancy.

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