Employers are exercising greater caution in hiring despite unfilled vacancies
Hiring in Singapore has slowed over 2019’s 2nd quarter, while retrenchments have remained low, according to the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) latest report.
The labour market report found that most employers are not laying off existing workers, but exercising greater caution in hiring even when they have unfilled vacancies.
Total employment from April to July (4,000) was less than half the figures for the first quarter (10,700) of the year, said MOM.
Sectors such as information & communications, professionals services, community, social & personal services, as well as financial services continued to see employment growth.
Retrenchments were also lower than it was a year ago. Over the second quarter, MOM observed fewer retrenchment exercises across all industries.
However, unemployment continues to rise since September 2018.
“MOM and Workforce Singapore, together with tripartite partners, are closely monitoring the labour market situation, and stand ready to step up support for Singaporeans under the Adapt and Grow initiative,” MOM said.
The ministry encouraged employers to tap on resources such as the career support program (CSP) and career trial to tap on a wider pool of jobseekers.
Additionally, CSP provides salary support for employers who hire long-term unemployed jobseekers or mature retrenched candidates in PMET roles.
As talent and skills become scarce in Singapore, Minister of State for Manpower Zaqy Mohamad believes it’s crucial for employers to shift from “buying talent” to “building talent” — and HR’s role in the shift.
He said HR needs to first understand companies’ overall workforce needs and optimise their talent development efforts across all functions.
“Business leaders need to support their HR teams as they implement competency-based hiring and on-the-job training programs to ‘build’ talent,” he said.