Career Paths: What to Expect in 2013

Career Paths: What to Expect in 2013

Planning you career moves for 2013? Whether you’re a fresh graduate looking for your first job or an established professional exploring options for a better deal, the prospects are good. Trends show that there will likely be no shortage of jobs in Singapore.


According to Morgan McKinley’s Singapore 2013 Hiring Market Report, based on a survey of over 700 employers from the Asia Pacific region, the Singapore jobs situation remains positive in spite of the global economic crisis. Our country has proven strong, earning kudos from Moody’s Investor Service as “one of the world’s only top rated economies.”

Singapore’s economy grew by an impressive 10% in the first quarter of 2012. To put that figure in perspective, the average growth over the last five years was just 6%. Singapore also ranks highest in purchasing power in Asia. The World Bank ranks us as the top global economy terms of doing business, and second in this year’s World Economic Forum’s ranking of Global Competitiveness.

Need more testimony from the experts? In June last year, the Ministry of Manpower reported a downtrend in manpower shortages. Employers found it easier to fill vacancies within their companies. In the first quarter of 2012, the majority of employment gains came from administrative and support services, construction, and manufacturing. In the second quarter, the MOM reported a drop in unemployment.

What does this all mean to you? Your job search prospects are bright. But we have to stress that the trends do favor certain specific careers. Morgan McKinley’s report places particular focus on the financial services and commerce & industry sectors.

Singapore is widely recognized as a world leader in financial services, thanks to sound regulation and a corruption-free trading environment. We have emerged as a private banking hub, and industries are now looking into turning Singapore into precious metal trading center that hopes to rival the likes of London and Zurich.

Of the Singaporean managers in the financial services sector who participated in the Morgan McKinley survey, 72% reported that they plan to bring in new hires in the next six months. Almost all (95%) expect to secure permanent hires, while 50% plan to recruit temporary and contractual hires. Compared to the previous 12-month period, 74% believe that hiring will not decline, with 22% expecting a rise.

Meanwhile, over at the commerce & industry sector, the Morgan McKinley report reveals some encouraging findings. Of the Singaporean manager-respondents in this sector, only 44% anticipate that global uncertainty will have a negative effect on growth in the Asia Pacific region. If you think that number isn’t impressive, consider this: it’s significantly lower than the 58% response from the Hong Kong respondents and 71% from the China respondents.

Of the Singaporean respondents, 45% said that their companies will be hiring without job losses over the next six months. 88% will focus on permanent hiring, while 51% are looking to hire temporary or contractual employees, and 64% expect to increase their companies’ headcount. Finally, 36% expect an increase in hiring levels.

Now, you’re probably asking, are job prospects only good for those in financial services and commerce & industry? The answer is no. The Ministry of Manpower has identified other sectors in need of employees with particular skills, or strategic skills in demand. These are:

Manufacturing. Has a high demand for engineers of various specialties, QA/QC specialists, and chemists.

Construction. In need of engineers, surveyors, architectural assistants, and project managers.

Healthcare. Requires audiologists, dieticians, diagnostic radiographers, lab technologists, nurses, and therapists and doctors of various specializations.

Information Communication & Digital Media. Looking for programmers, engineers, system analysts, project managers, software architects, line producers, scriptwriters, riggers, game producers and programmers, and artists of various specializations.

Tourism and Retail. On the lookout for lighting designers, production managers, set designers, sound designers, stage designers, museum/art curators, art dealers/auctioneers, and casino surveillance specialists.

In closing, we have to mention this interesting tidbit from Morgan McKinley’s report: respondents from Singapore expressed concerns about the availability of potential employees, what with the competition among companies. That, dear jobseeker, is your cue to take action, and go out and get that job.

Source: Morgan McKinley – Ministry of Manpower –