More employers looking beyond academic qualifications: MOM report
SINGAPORE — More employers here are looking beyond academic qualifications when hiring, the latest Job Vacancies report released by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) showed.
SINGAPORE — More employers here are looking beyond academic qualifications when hiring, the latest Job Vacancies report showed.
The report, released by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) on Tuesday (March 19), was based on a survey done last year. It covered private sector establishments and the public sector, which comprised government ministries, organs of state and statutory boards.
The findings showed that the proportion of openings for professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMET), where academic qualification was not a main consideration, rose to 52 per cent last year from 42 per cent in 2017.
Employers placed stronger emphasis on skills or relevant working experience for these positions, which included software, web and multimedia developers, systems analysts, and commercial and marketing sales executives.
Mr David Ang, director of corporate services at Human Capital Singapore, said that it was generally a “given” that those applying for PMET roles would have good academic qualifications.
“There are also many individuals who may not have good qualifications but have done well in their careers and have good track records and experiences to show to their prospective employers.” he added.
Mr Ang also noted that the pool of workers with varied skills was increasing in today’s economy.
“The proportion of PMETs who are affected by globalisation and disruption is going to increase. The PMETs switching or displaced in jobs are getting younger with many in their 40s. With more of this group of people available out there, employers will also look at their skills and experience,” he added.
Ms Karen Blal, regional director of CIPD Asia, a professional body for human resource and people development, said that it was practical for employers to look beyond academic qualifications.
“This is a trend that’s emerging all over the world. The reason is that academic qualifications test knowledge but they don’t test skill and ability. Employers are increasingly looking for people with a broader range of skills,” she said.
Overall, 42 per cent (or 26,500) of the 63,300 vacancies last year were newly created positions formed as a result of business formation and expansion. There were more vacancies for PMET roles and these were commonly in the education, finance, and information and communications sector.
HOT JOBS IN 2018
The report showed the highest number of PMET vacancies were in the teaching and training professions.
As more firms integrated technology into their work processes, job openings that were related to technology development and implementation also went up.
In a continuing trend from 2017, software, web and multimedia developers ranked among the top PMET jobs with the highest number of vacancies last year.
Finance, marketing and business development positions also featured strongly among the top PMET jobs that needed to be filled.
These included commercial and marketing sales executives, business development managers, financial and investment advisers as well as sales and marketing managers.
One in three job vacancies was unfilled for six months or more — which was similar to 2017 — the report said.
Non-PMET vacancies remained harder to fill than PMET vacancies. Employers indicated that they could not find suitable Singaporean candidates for these non-PMET positions, because what they offered in terms of pay and working conditions were not what the jobseekers were looking for.
While employers did not have as much difficulty filling vacancies for PMET roles, they said that the lack of necessary specialised skills or work experience were the common reasons why such vacancies were harder to fill.
The job market may be rosy for some PMETs, but demand for cleaners, shop sales assistants and security guards declined as the economy continued to transform.
In particular, the number of vacancies for shop sales assistants went down by almost 50 per cent from five years ago as the retail industry continued to evolve in the face of changing consumer preferences and competition.
The rising need for healthcare resulted in a jump in demand for healthcare assistants. To fill these positions, employers were prepared to pay a monthly salary of at least S$1,400 in 2018, which was higher than the S$1,200 offered two years ago.