Skip to main content

Job Vacancies, 2007

Improved Job Opportunities In a Wide Range of Occupations, Providing Good Prospects for Job Seekers of All Educational Levels

The strong economic performance has led to increased job vacancies in a wide range of occupations across the entire skills spectrum. While job opportunities improved for job seekers of all educational levels, the pace of increase was strongly skewed in favour of the better educated. These are the key findings from the annual “Job Vacancies, 2007” report by the Ministry of Manpower's Research and Statistics Department. The report analyses the job vacancy situation in 2007 and provides a breakdown of positions available by occupation, industries and qualifications required, as well as identifies the top occupations within each group.

Key Findings

2.   On the back of sustained economic growth, private sector establishments each with at least 25 employees reported 30,923 unfilled positions in September 2007, the highest in seven years1. Combined with public sector openings, overall job vacancies reached 35,498, 19% more than a year ago. These unfilled posts formed 2.4% of total manpower demand, up from 2.2% a year ago. Reflecting the growing demand for skilled workers and the job boom in the services economy, the vacancy rate for professionals, managers, executives & technicians (PMET) and clerical, sales & services workers both at 2.7% was significantly higher than for production & related workers at 1.8%.

3.   The largest number of vacancies was for occupations that required at least a university degree qualification (7,754). This was followed closely by positions requiring secondary qualifications (7,727), reflecting the strong demand for service & sales workers. While vacancies rose for all job seekers across the education spectrum, the pace of increase was strongly skewed in favour of workers with at least upper secondary qualifications.

4.   The job opportunities increased across many occupations, particularly for the skilled professions in the managerial, engineering, accounting, financial, IT and nursing fields. The PMET share of job openings rose to an all-time high, making up 45% of all vacancies in September 2007. This was achieved at the expense of openings for production & related workers whose share declined to 29%, as increased demand for workers such as crane & hoist operators, material & freight handling workers, bus and lorry drivers, office cleaners and construction labourers failed to offset the decline in others led by electronic equipment/component assemblers. The clerical, sales & services' share of openings was broadly unchanged over the year at 26%. The top occupations in terms of positions available within this category were for private security guards (1,266), shop sales assistants (1,223), protective service workers (1,121), administrative clerks (1,041), receptionists & information clerks (945) and waiters (787).

5.   The services sector continued to generate the bulk (71% or 25,158) of the job vacancies in September 2007, representing a 23% increase from a year ago. Manufacturing vacancies (7,422) took a 4.6% dip with the fall in demand for production & related workers. Amid the building boom, job openings in construction nearly doubled to 2,400, reflecting a broad-based increase in positions available within the sector. Other than construction labourers (836), there was increased demand for crane & hoist operators (630), supervisors & foremen (building trades) (158) and building & construction engineers (118). Within the services sector, the community, social & personal services (6,448) contributed the most openings, partly reflecting vacancies from the public sector. This was followed by wholesale & retail trade (3,693), transport & storage (3,202), administrative & support services (2,886) and professional services (2,289).

6.   The full report is available online at the Ministry of Manpower's website.


1 For September period