Looking for the right talent? Here are the top issues that will dominate Singapore’s recruitment market, says recruitment specialist Hays.

Background checks

If there is one thing many people learnt last year, it is that technology offers employers, recruiters and hiring managers powerful new recruitment tools — but if they are used exclusively, such tools become counterproductive to the recruitment process.

That’s why the importance of conducting a thorough background check is high on the list of top recruitment issues to watch out for this year. 

Content on social networking sites can be embellished. But as employers incorporate social media checks into their recruitment process, some are neglecting to do a thorough background check on the information they find. More importantly, some are even making hiring decisions based on this unauthenticated content.

That is why taking the time to get to know someone face-to-face and confirming their background is still crucial in identifying the right role for them. 

Smaller expatriate packages

Another trend this year will be the continued reduction in expatriate packages as employers cut back on the traditional expatriate packages that were once used to lure international talent.

Employees currently on expatriate packages will be converted to local packages and benefits such as housing and living allowances will be incorporated into the base salary.

Mobile technology

Recruitment specialist Hays also expects to see the further integration of mobile technology into the recruitment process to feed a growing appetite for information that merges easily with that platform.

It is not only large organisations that are embracing new technology; small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are also looking at ways technology can improve the process.

Outsourcing recruitment

Meanwhile, the reasons for using Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) will change as organisations that are looking to expand globally seek a global approach to their workforce strategy.

The need for global RPO will also be driven by both multinational employers looking to harmonise their practices and organisations expanding into emerging markets.

Eurozone talent

Instability in the Eurozone is another factor affecting recruitment. Singapore, and Asia as a region, is well placed to ride out impacts on the global economy caused by European sovereign debt issues.

In a global context, the unemployment rate here is low. As a result, more overseas candidates, particularly those in the Eurozone, will show interest in relocating to Singapore to take advantage of its jobs market, particularly since the Asian economies continue to outperform some of their western counterparts.

More recognition

Employers will reward proven performers by reviewing employee benefits, discussing potential career paths and offering training and development. This will help to create a positive culture of recognition based on achievement.

More promotion opportunities

There will be a greater focus on internal mobility to overcome the skills shortage felt in the Singapore market. This movement of employees from one position or location to another within the organisation also has retention benefits as it provides opportunities for staff to develop and reach their career goals.

It is about developing the right people for the right roles, whether that is a vertical or a lateral move.

Talent competition

Candidate attraction is also high on the list. Employers are developing new and innovative ways to differentiate themselves from competitors. Given the high competition for a very finite pool of suitably qualified and experienced candidates, this will become central to securing the best talent this year.

Bilingual skills in demand

Across Asia, Hays expects to see an increase in the number of requests for candidates with strong bilingual skills. As the business community becomes increasingly globalised, this is essential in helping organisations do business across the globe. Candidates who have worked overseas will be valued.

Succession planning

This year, there is a greater focus on succession planning, particularly for roles where skills shortages are greatest to retain good talent.