SINGAPORE (May 4): Singapore’s workers, known for being highly skilled, are well aware and confident of their market power. So much that the majority of employees may not even think twice about jumping ship given the opportunity, should they be displeased with their current work situation in any way.

Based on recent job placement and trend data in the 2017 Kelly Services and Capita Salary Guide, a majority 74% of workers in Singapore believe their skill sets and experience allow them to compete effectively with other job seekers.

At the same time, 64% of the workers surveyed are convinced they are in a good position to secure a similar or better role.

Despite the upbeat outlook on job opportunities, Singapore’s employees appear to remain concerned about the future of their employment, given how 72% of workers mentioned that their biggest concern was of their knowledge and skills becoming obsolete – as compared to layoffs (28%).

Such concerns regarding skill obsolescence is evident throughout all segments of the workforce, namely PMETs (58%), IT (64%), engineering (61%), and finance and accounting (59%).

Correspondingly, an approximate 8 in 10 workers (83%) surveyed by Kelly Services recognised the importance of evolving and growing their skills and knowledge, as well as indicated a desire to grow their skill set as a result.

In response, the recruitment consultancy suggests that companies contribute to building a “future-proof” workforce in order to engage and retain their talent.

This involves not only offering a competitive salary, but also a range of high-growth learning opportunities to benefit both the organisation and the employee in terms of capabilities and adaptability, which in turn ensures that the company’s workforce is future-proof, says Kelly Services.

“What distinguishes great employers today is their commitment to the learning and development of their people… While industries experiencing high growth are in a better position to provide competitive remuneration, employee engagement and retention goes beyond the employee’s pay packet,” comments Foo See Yang, managing director and country head for Kelly Services Singapore.

“Employers who empower their people, and provide learning opportunities that build skills and competencies, will be able to better attract and retain their top talent. Job seekers who are looking to diversify their skills may also want to consider growing industries where the need for talent is stronger,” he adds.

“Companies that invest in their people incentivise their top talent to remain loyal, and at the same time improve overall workforce competency and resilience. Having a resilient, agile workforce also translates to having the right talent mix of permanent and contract staff. This provides the organisation with the ability to act quickly to close any skills gaps, manage costs effectively, and the flexibility to scale up or down its talent pool as needed.”