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Jobs Situation Report 7th Edition

  1. This edition of the Jobs Situation Report highlights opportunities in Professional Services, which employed nearly 256,000 workers in June 2020.

    Professional Services as a Broad Sector with Individual Niches
  2. Singapore is a regional hub of choice for Professional Services firms, due to its open and conducive business environment, well-developed digital infrastructure and a highly-skilled workforce. While the Professional Services firms may be in diverse fields, about 9 in 10 persons they employ are in seven subsectors:

    Chart 1

  3. COVID-19 has impacted Professional Services firms unevenly.
    1. Activity levels for Architecture and Engineering subsector fell sharply, as most construction works were brought to a halt during the Circuit Breaker. Firms in Process Construction and Maintenance have reduced operations to about 60-70% and are gradually recovering.
    2. 70% of law firms reported a decrease in work.
    3. The Accountancy subsector has been less affected as audit, accounting and taxation services are still required to meet statutory requirements.
    4. The accelerated pace of digitalisation has benefitted firms offering Consultancy, Design and Advertising and Marketing with their digital expertise.
  4. For firms that continue to grow and require manpower, the Jobs Growth Incentive (JGI) scheme will provide substantial salary support to enable them to bring forward their hiring plans and grow their local workforce over the next six months till Feb 2021. Although JGI has just been launched, it has already started to spur employers such as Mazars, which provides audit and advisory advice, to hire additional Singaporeans in September.

    SGUnited Jobs and Skills Opportunities in Professional Services
  5. More than 1,500 companies in Professional Services have offered about 9,000 opportunities since April 2020, 80% of which are for PMET roles. Over 1,400 jobseekers have been placed in these opportunities, including jobs, company-hosted traineeships/attachments and training courses. Two in three of the opportunities are jobs, which would be supported under the JGI if the eligibility criteria are met (see Chart 2).

    Chart 2

  6. Given the diverse nature of Professional Services, we will feature the key subsectors that are providing opportunities.

    Consultancy
  7. Major consulting firms have seen growing demand for technology and cybersecurity expertise, even as conventional work has dipped. Clients have also turned to HR consulting firms for advice to set up effective remote working systems as well as to manage company restructuring.
  8. As the subsector pivots towards new growth areas, jobseekers should be prepared to hone their skills in emerging technologies such as Cloud technology, cybersecurity and artificial intelligence. Top employers include Ernst and Young, PwC Singapore and Amaris Consulting Pte Ltd. Table 1 highlights how jobseekers can enhance their career prospects in Consulting.

    Table 1

  9. Non-specialised roles such as Management and Business Consultants typically require less than 5 years of work experience, and offer salaries ranging from $3,500 to $8,500. Candidates with specialised skills may command higher salaries.
  10. Employers are also encouraged to hire mid-career individuals and bridge skills or knowledge gaps through government-supported training. Interventions such as the Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) for Consultants can help new hires acquire job-relevant skills over a period of six months to a year.
  11. 36-year-old Zen Lye is one such mid-career individual who participated in the PCP for Consultants.
    1. The former Assistant Manager had switched from the construction industry to the consultancy subsector to pursue his passion for new technologies, such as the Internet of Things.
    2. PwC Singapore valued his earnest attitude towards learning, passion for technology and his transferrable skills in project and stakeholder management.Zen was hired as a Senior Associate in April 2019.
    3. To bridge the gap in skills required for the consulting role, the company placed him in the year-long PCP for Consultants, during which he acquired new skills not just in consultancy, but also 3D Modelling, 3D printing as well as Python Programming. These newly acquired skills would help in building prototypes for new products in his area of work.
    4. More than a year into his new job, Zen remains positive despite the challenges brought about by COVID-19 and looks forward to continuing contributing to PwC Singapore. He aspires to head up a team that is equally as passionate for new technologies.

    Advertising and Marketing
  12. The demand for Advertising and Marketing roles such as Content Strategists, Community Managers and Commercial and Marketing Sales Executives remains high as companies seek to stand out among the growing number of competitors in the digital sphere. Employers in this subsector include Publicis, MediaMonks and Carat Media Services Singapore. Table 2 highlights how jobseekers can enhance their career prospects in Advertising and Marketing, while Chart 3 shows the salary ranges offered for major roles.

    Table 2 and Chart 3

  13. Mid-career jobseekers who do not have the required skills but are keen to join the subsector can tap on available career conversion programmes such as PCPs for Digital Advertising Professionals, Content Strategies and In-house Digital Communications. Mid-career individuals can also apply for company attachments under the SGUnited Mid-Career Pathways Programme in roles such as Digital Media Assistant, Content Producer, Project Executive and Social Media Executive. These roles are also available to fresh graduates under the SGUnited Traineeships Programme.
  14. Jobseekers can also tap on training courses under the SGUnited Skills programme, such as in Service Experience Design and Innovation, to boost their resumes and increase their chances of finding a suitable match.

    Design
  15. Design services especially in UX/UI gained prominence as businesses sought to enhance their online presence and digital touchpoints. Table 3 highlights how jobseekers can enhance their career prospects in Design while Chart 4 shows the salary ranges offered for major roles in Design.

    Table 3 and Chart 4

  16. To help mid-career jobseekers who are keen to join the Design subsector bridge skills gap, employers can place them in career conversion programmes such as PCPs for Designers (Furniture & Lifestyle) as well as UX/UI Digital or Spatial Professionals, which has seen a 40% increase in uptake since the pandemic.
  17. For instance, IN-EXPAT Consultant Pte Ltd, a building consultancy, hired 45-year old Yvonne Eng as a project executive through the PCP for Designers (Furniture & Lifestyle). Yvonne was formerly working in HR and administration roles in a precision engineering company. Through the PCP, she can acquire skills in design prototypes, professional practice of design, materials and furniture making technology and PYTHA (3D drawing software), etc.
  18. In addition, there are company-hosted traineeships or attachments in roles such as Design Executive, Graphic Design/Communications Trainee, Interior Designer, UX/UI Interaction Designer.

    Accountancy
  19. Despite the impact of the pandemic and more selective nature of the roles within the Accountancy subsector, it offers opportunities such as company-hosted traineeships and attachments as Audit Associate, Accounts Associate and Tax Associate, which will allow jobseekers to gain more exposure to the subsector and pick up industry-relevant skills. Table 4 highlights skills that enhance jobseekers’ career prospects in Accountancy.

    Table 4

  20. Salaries for accountants range from $3,150 to $7,450, depending on experience.As roles within the Accountancy subsector require more specialised skills, the PCPs for Management Accountants and Internal Auditors are suitable for jobseekers who meet the basic Accountancy requirements for the job, and would like to further enhance their skills to take on other Accounting job functions.

    Engineering
  21. Similarly, the Engineering subsectors would require jobseekers to have some specific skill sets and knowledge of Engineering. It is offering company-hosted traineeships and attachments in roles such as Mechanical/Civil and Structural Engineers, Building Information Modelers, Project Assistant Engineer (Tank Maintenance), Assistant Sales Engineer (Electrical Heat Tracking) and Electrical Technician. Table 5 highlights the skills that enhance jobseekers’ career prospects in Engineering, while Chart 5 provides the salaries offered for major roles.

    Table 5 and Chart 5

  22. Jobseekers with some background knowledge in Engineering but would like to switch tracks within the subsector can participate in PCP for Technical Sales Engineers/Managers and PCP for Building Information Modelling Professionals.
  23. In addition, there are training courses, such as under the SGUnited Skills Robotics and Automation Up-Skill in Engineering 4.0, and Programme in Operations and Engineering Management which could help jobseekers further build up their skill sets and get an edge over others when applying for relevant roles.

    For More Information
  24. To find out more about:
    1. Opportunities available in the Professional Services, please visit the MyCareersFuture portal here (QR code below).
    2. WSG’s programmes and career advisory and matching services, please visit www.mycareersfuture.gov.sg/careercoaching (QR code below) or call WSG’s hotline at 6883 5885.
    3. SSG’s SGUnited Skills programmes, jobseekers can visit https://www.myskillsfuture.sg/sgunitedskills.
  25. The list of upcoming engagement and outreach events organised by NTUC’s e2i and WSG till mid-October 2020 is also available in Annex D. Jobseekers may register for these events at either https://www.ssg-wsg.gov.sg/events.html or https://e2i.com.sg/events/.

QR codes

FOOTNOTE

  1. Based on Labour Market Report 2Q 2020.
  2. From The Law Society of Singapore’s COVID-19 Legal Profession Impact Survey (June 2020).