According to the AYP Group Employment Outlook and Salary Guide 2016, salaries for most jobs are projected to be relatively stable in 2016, compared to 2015. Furthermore, we surmised five key attitudes an employee needs to thrive in the job market in the following 10 years.  Innovation. Cognitive reasoning. Emotional resilience. Constructive communication. And lastly, collaboration.

Singapore – High pay levels

Singapore offers the highest salaries across Asia Pacific. As revealed in The Towers Watson 2015 Asia Pacific Salary Budget Planning Report, Hong Kong remained as the highest paying economy in the Greater China region. However, pay levels in Singapore are considerably higher. Granted, the gap has been narrowed compared to the previous year. However, base salaries in Singapore are approximately 3%-10% higher than those of Hong Kong. Additionally, we observe that an increasing number of companies expressed interest in moving their Asia- Pacific regional headquarters from Singapore to countries with lower pay levels, such as Malaysia and Indonesia. This is in order to increase cost-savings. 


ASEAN has reached a historical milestone with the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). Markedly, the AEC is a regional community with the highest level of integration. It is second only to the European Union, which came into existence on Dec 31, 2015. Indeed, the establishment of AEC will allow the free flow of goods, services, investments and skilled labor. There will be freeer movement of capital across the region.  That said, this will certainly intensify the competition among ASEAN countries.

In the coming years, Singapore is poised to play a major role in ASEAN market. Benefitting from the rise of ASEAN, there will be greater foreseeable opportunities for employees in Singapore, especially talents with regional and managerial experience.

Trends in employment market

The global economy is facing a number of challenges this year. Regardless, there are still bright spots in the employment market. For instance, the emerging manpower demand in industries such as AI , robot automation, 3D printing, biotechnology, and genetics. In contrast, professionals, managers, executives, and technicians are buffeted by the economic slowdown. Therefore, to stay current and ahead, we should commit ourselves to continuous learning and extending capabilities into new growing areas.

Transformation of workforce

Over the last decade, the surge of contract positions and the rise of the freelancer economy has heralded the transformation of the Singapore workforce. Employees place strong emphasis on job security, with hopes of long-term employment and less uncertainties. However, the best and the brightest tend to be are more keen to work as contractors or temporary employees. This is largely due to a higher degree of flexibility. Thus, we are now in an age of “Supertemp”, as more organisations have to embrace specialized expertise in managing sensitive projects. Evidently, many companies opt to outsource project fund management, or choose to recruit temporary managerial employees during organizational restructuring.

Skills development

Altogether, it is encouraging that the Singapore government has been devoting more resources to help Singaporeans take ownership of skills development. This includes lifelong learning support through course subsidies and SkillsFuture Credit. Henceforth, we should seize this chance to improve on our skills mastery and make career advances.