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Macroeconomic Factors Impacting Financial Services Recruitment In Singapore

Over the last year hiring across Financial Services in Singapore has remained buoyant, especially within Risk, Analytics, Compliance, and Financial Crime. However, we are seeing wider macroeconomic factors impacting recruitment in this region.

In the current market many companies are faced with the realisation that salary expectations are high and there is a lack of options pertaining to hiring. This is being felt most acutely at Senior Associate to Vice President levels, where organisations need specific skills and experience for the roles.

As more international firms move their businesses to Singapore this is creating opportunities for top-tier candidates. It is a competitive market and organisations are faced with limited hiring choices, as there is nowhere within a 1000-mile radius of Singapore that can compete on the quality of candidates and ease of doing business safely. 

The drive for local candidates has further exacerbated the supply availability of professionals and driven up the salary expectations. The Ministry Of Manpower (MOM) is focused on ensuring the market remains competitive for locals and expats alike, and from the data it looks as though this strategy is working. 

A key development has been that many local businesses are losing their best and brightest talent to international firms and are finding it very difficult to backfill the positions. From the data we are seeing it is improbable local firms can continue with their pre-2020 strategy of hiring cheaper local talent, as both local and expat are now at similar rates of pay.

Rightly or wrongly, international firms have always been labeled for preferring international talent; however, these firms have now switched their approach and are aggressively targeting the local market.

While wage inflation in Financial Services is very real right now, we are sure it will level out at some stage; however, with Singapore reducing the last of its Covid-19 pandemic restrictions we believe the competition for the best talent is only going to become fiercer.

This is a great time for candidates; however, hiring firms will need to review their recruitment strategies as it is no longer enough just to post a job online and expect a plethora of good local candidates to apply, and if they do it is highly likely they are in discussions with a number competing organisations.

I am an experienced specialised recruiters based in Singapore, with an outstanding track record for delivering the best candidates to my clients. I do this by:

  • Finding better quality candidates; utilising my comprehensive network and relationships to engage with passive candidates and support them through the hiring process.
  • Promoting my clients Employer Brand; presenting a consistent message to candidates about their business and the role – promoting the work appeal.
  • Market knowledge; I can provide salary benchmark reports and market mapping of top talent.
  • Candidate experience; my candidate relationships and understanding enable me to support salary negotiations, and offer management.
  • Confidentiality; for sensitive positions, I can deliver confidential searches and target a limited number of relevant candidates with discretion.

If you are looking for a solution for your hiring and would like to discuss your current recruitment strategy or require more information on the current market. Please do contact me Adnan Maddix | Partner, Head of Singapore | E: