JOBS IN DEMAND
Information technology and multimedia development roles such as software, web and multimedia developers, and systems analysts remained “highly sought after jobs,” according to the MOM report.
Engineering professionals and technicians were also in high demand, including electronics engineers and civil engineering technicians, MOM said.
There was a “stable and large pool of job openings” for business development and sales, such as commercial and marketing sales executives and business development managers.
“These roles remain crucial as companies adapt to change and seek new business opportunities,” the MOM report states.
There has also been a slight increase in demand for administrative professionals such as management and business consultants and human resource consultants.
Among non-PMET vacancies, other than construction workers and sales assistants, cleaners and security guards were common vacancies.
Servers remain “in high demand”, while the rise of e-commerce has resulted in “nascent demand” for drivers of trucks, vans and light commercial vehicles, MOM said.
WHY NO TAKEHOLDERS?
For non-PMET positions, reasons for not accepting jobs include the strenuous physical nature of the work, unattractive pay, and poor working conditions.
“We hope that many employers can still fill vacancies by expanding the resident workforce,” Manpower Minister Tan See Leng said.
This despite the reopening of borders, which would likely see the entry of more foreign workers.
Dr Tan called on service sector employers to leverage government programs such as the Service Industry Transformation Program and the Job Growth Incentive to redesign jobs and hire more locals.
“I don’t think we can go back to the old way of doing things without thinking about how do we keep innovating, how do we keep digitizing, and how do we keep using technology for certain jobs to improve productivity,” he said. The Minister.
For PMETs, employers reported a shortage of candidates with the necessary skills and work experience, particularly for positions where incumbents rely on specialized technical knowledge, as well as increased competition from other employers.
“As the economy recovers, we hope that employers can invest… more resources in training, upgrading the skills of the workforce available for longer-term needs,” said the Dr Tan.
“I would urge all employers to try to allocate more resources to do this in terms of development, and … potential employers to adopt a plug, train and play mindset when hiring.”
With a tighter labor market, the proportion of vacancies not filled for six months or more increased to 35% in 2021 from 27% in 2020. Prior to that, the proportion had been on a general downward trend since 2014, MOM said.
There was a slight drop in the share of vacancies involving work that could be done remotely, from 35% to 31%. This reflected the higher proportion of job vacancies in industries and occupations where remote working was not prevalent, such as in construction or manufacturing.
At the same time, with the resumption of activities in the workplace, fewer employers offered remote work options for
professions that typically require face-to-face interactions.