- The Straits Times
Online hiring activity in Singapore is expected to enjoy continued growth in early 2018, with job listings and vacancies becoming more available, job portal Monster has said.
However, optimism has been cautioned with certain sectors of industry likely to experience fluctuations and possible decline.
According to the Monster Employment Index (MEI), data has shown a 1% year-on-year growth in Singapore online hiring activity in December 2017, with improvement expected to persist into early 2018.
The MEI was released on Thursday (Mar 1) by Monster Singapore and involved a review of millions of online job listings on career portals in Singapore.
The banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI) sector saw the highest growth in online hiring activity, up 28% year-on-year, and continues to lead online recruitment activity among industry sectors.
The government, private sector undertakings (PSU) and defence sector, however, fared the worst amongst all other sectors, showing the steepest annual decline at -8%.
For occupational groups monitored by the MEI, the engineering, construction and real estate sector saw for the second consecutive month, an up-trend in online hiring activity and recorded 11% year-on-year growth.
It was also the occupational group that was most in demand, witnessing its steepest annual growth since November 2012.
Up-trends in annual online demand were seen in several roles for the first time following a series of declines in the past.
Finance & accounts, real estate as well as marketing & communications each experienced a 1% growth – their first positive growth since March 2015, March 2017 and September 2017 respectively.
Nonetheless, the index warns against over-confidence in certain sectors.
For instance, the information technology (IT) sector achieved an average annual growth rate of 9% year-on-year.
Yet Singapore’s talent pool’s lack of preparedness to embrace changes in niche tech skills and responsibilities, as well as the issue of job-talent mismatches, continue to cause uncertainty amid a fluctuating global outlook.
Sanjay Modi, managing director of Monster.com Apac and the Middle East, said in a statement: “Though growth in other sectors have been anemic, we are cautiously optimistic about the hiring market in 2018.”
“With the implementation of e-learning schemes and initiatives such as SkillsFuture, signs of gradual improvement in the labour market will be evident. Such consistent efforts should help enrich the labour market over time.”
He added that with ongoing structural changes as well as AI and automation continuing to alter jobs, employers have to rethink their place and relevance in the future digital economy.