Singapore 'most attractive city' for digital talent

Most workers are looking to jump ship by 2022

Singapore 'most attractive city' for digital talent

The Asia Pacific region has emerged as a go-to destination for digital talent. Singapore, a new entrant on Boston Consulting Group’s (BCG) global list, ranked as the second most attractive city for workers looking to move abroad. Other top locations included Canada, France, Germany, Switzerland, the UK, the US, and New Zealand. Findings suggested that Singapore and New Zealand’s entry into the top ten this year reflected both countries’ favourable handling of the COVID-19 crisis.

With hybrid working remaining a firm part of our lives, employees were also asked where they’d ideally search for remote jobs. The verdict? Australia, the UK, and the US came out top. Overall, the study found that digital workers were open to both virtual and physical mobility options when switching jobs.

Read more: Future of Work: Practical HR tips to attract and retain talent

Majority digital talent looking for new jobs in 2022

Whether it’s a virtual or physical ‘relocation’, BCG’s study found that most (75%) employees were expecting to leave their current jobs soon. Additionally, more than two in five have been actively looking for new roles. The figures for the global study, which surveyed over 10,000 workers, seemed much higher than ongoing studies that estimate around half of workers participating in the ‘Great Resignation’.

Despite this, the reasons for quitting remain similar with studies that were less sector specific. BCG found that the opportunity to advance their careers was the main driver for technology employees looking to switch roles (63%). This was followed by career development opportunities – about 49% were keen on new challenges (49%). For digital employees, having good work-life balance continued to be the most valued aspect of their jobs.

On the topic of balance, the study found that while the crisis did not impact technology employees’ working patterns as much as the general workforce, fully remote working has increased significantly for employees, reaching as high as 76% by the end of 2020. This means that almost all employees (95%) now have an expectation to retain some of that flexibility. Tech employees preferred to work at least one day a week from home, with about 25% keen on being fully remote. Other types of flexibility they’re looking for in employers were fully or partially flexi-hours (75%).

Lastly, competitive compensation package has also jumped to 3rd spot – from 5th back in 2018 – for the most important criteria for candidates when job searching. Besides salaries and bonuses, tech employees were also open to or keen on longer-term incentives such as stock options and shares.

Read more: 'Give me flexibility – or I'll quit!': Employers make changes in Great Resignation

How can HR attract talent in an ‘overheated’ market?

Fret not, while expensive tech salaries remain a stressful issue for employers, the study’s findings suggested that HR can still curate their EVP and help the company stand out on other aspects of the employee experience. “Workers in digital roles emerged from the COVID crisis relatively unscathed and are now entering an overheated talent market with many options,” said Orsolya Kovács-Ondrejkovic, associate director at BCG and co-author of the report. “As companies across all industries digitize, salaries for tech talent have skyrocketed to a level where few employers can compete. However, our research shows that money isn’t everything – employers can still be attractive to digital talent with the right workplace culture and values.”

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