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Talent Trends 2021

Singapore Salary Guide 2021

The Michael Page Salary Benchmark has traditionally been our annual salary guide that advises business leaders, hiring managers and job seekers on hiring decisions in Singapore. However, in view of the COVID-19 crisis and the ensuing economic disruption around the world, we recognise that our annual salary guide needs to do a whole lot more.

Enter Talent Trends 2021, a new report that features new insights and market sentiment for industries that have experienced significant upheavals in the past year. Expect topics that cover prominent recruitment and talent-related concerns, including digital readiness, organisational design, flexible work arrangements, performance management, and diversity and inclusion. Results draw from a survey of 12 Asia-Pacific markets, with responses from over 5,500 businesses and 21,000 employees, of which over 3,500 replies are from directors or CXOs.

With advice and recommendations from Page’s consultants and leadership members, the report is the definitive guide to hiring trends across the Asia-Pacific region in 2021.

Watch the webinar and receive the Talent Trends 2021 Report here.


Singapore’s Key Statistics


of companies in Singapore are looking to increase their headcounts in 2021


of those employed anticipate themselves looking for new job opportunities, while another 36% are passively open to new roles in 2021

1 in 10

expects zero pay increase from their current salary for new job offers

Report Highlights

1. Future workplace trends

From our findings, learn about the top priorities for CXOs in 2021, key investment areas in technology and digital tools, employees’ preferences on workplace flexibility, and how performance assessment has changed.


2. People-first strategies

From leadership communication to mental health and well-being matters, the report highlights the best people strategies to engage your most valuable asset – talent.


3. Salaries and bonuses

Find out how your company’s offer for new hires compare against competitors and expectations from job seekers.


4. Attracting and retaining top talent

Remuneration may be crucial, but it is not everything in talent attraction. Learn non-monetary aspects of attraction and retention strategy that job seekers value most.


2021 Salary Guide: Embracing disruptions and the road to recovery


Nilay Khandelwal
Managing Director, Singapore

COVID-19 led to severe disruption to the Singapore economy. Yet despite the continuing challenges, Singapore’s economy has turned a corner and remains a stable, secure and trusted hub, with seamless connections. The coronavirus outbreak has also accelerated the digital transformation of companies in Singapore. As the economy recovers, investment into the market will flourish, and that would drive the demand for talent amid the business recovery climate.

Our Singapore Talent Trends 2021 report reflects key market insights for the following 12 months. Technology firms, particularly those who are seeking for a stable geopolitical environment, have continued to view Singapore as a strategic location. It helps that Singapore continues to enjoy a healthy level of connectivity to major global markets and as a gateway to ASEAN countries.

On the ground, businesses of different sizes have to implement digital practices, such as work-from-home arrangements, to help maintain company operations despite the circuit breaker period. That has brought upon a surge of demand for technology professionals as the phased resumption of nationwide activities happened in mid-June. This economic rebound has now extended across all crucial technology roles, as developers, data engineers, cybersecurity and machine learning continue to further integrate into daily lives. However, supply and demand in technology remain a big challenge as they emerged from their lockdowns.

Healthcare and life sciences proved to be a recession-proof industry. We have seen a spike in value-add roles, such as regulatory affairs, quality assurance, scientists and, as of late, commercial roles. There is also a higher demand for cybersecurity roles, particularly for pharma companies, which certainly was not on the radar six months ago.

For China, Singapore remains a vital gateway to the rest of Asia. Chinese investments continue to drive a lot of the recruitment we’re doing today.

Contracting was not a popular form of employment before the Global Financial Crisis, but it is now having its moment. Interestingly, during Q2 and Q3 last year, we did not see any pick-up in the contracting space, despite being highlighted as a global recruitment trend. It was not until the back end of 2020 that the trend spiked, particularly across digital, procurement and technology, since travel and borders remain closed.

It is noteworthy that many businesses are thinking ahead – as the situation in Singapore improves steadily, companies have a surge in opportunistic hires. Knowing that it will only get more competitive, they are questioning their risk appetite more than ever.

Businesses are hiring for the future, not for today. They want to reap the benefits of the best talent by locking them in now. While I remain cautiously optimistic, 2021 is looking promising.

Get a copy of the 2021 Salary Guide now