Half of new jobs in Singapore’s finance sector are in tech

Nearly half of the newly created jobs by financial institutions operating in the Lion City are in technology, according to the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s (MAS) pilot employment outlook survey.

Out of the 1,800 projected hiring from July 2020 to June 2021, 49% or 880 jobs are for technology-related roles. The top new job roles in technology include application developers, application architects and business analysts.

The MAS divided technology roles into three broad types of job roles that financial institutions are hiring for their technology departments. They include “advanced tech roles”, “intermediate tech jobs” and “basic tech tops”.

Examples of advanced tech roles are enterprise architects and infrastructure architects, which are specialist roles that require highly technical skills.

Years of training

“They help shape and implement mission-critical technology projects, provide technical oversight for technology planning across the business and set technical standards to be followed. It requires years of training and experience to attain mastery of these skills,” Ravi Menon, MAS managing director, said in a webinar.

Menon noted, however, that the local supply of talent for such jobs is quite limited in Singapore.

“Financial institutions will need to rely on expertise from abroad while building a pipeline of locals for these advanced tech roles,” he said.

Intermediate tech jobs, meanwhile, include application developers, data analysts, UX/UI designers and cybersecurity specialists.

Basic tech jobs include tech support executives, IT operations and support, which are typically less complex and more rules-based.

“However, they pay less than intermediate and advanced tech roles and have not appealed to Singaporeans as much,” Menon said. “The recent increase in minimum qualifying salary to S$5,000 (£2,799, $3,739, €3,117) for entry-level employment pass holders in the financial sector means that it would be harder for financial institutions to hire cheaper foreigners for these roles.

“We hope more locals will take up these job roles, even if they are less paid, which also provide a pathway to the intermediate tech jobs, which are in demand.”

Rest of the market

Following technology, the second-largest hiring demand is in private banking and wealth management (12%), in roles such as relationship management, process excellence and digital transformation, according to the survey.

The remaining 40% of new jobs are spread across other business segments, including insurance, corporate banking, consumer banking, investment banking and asset management, as well as in corporate roles such as finance and human resources.

The survey included 30 financial institutions, which account for at least 40% of the financial services workforce in Singapore.

It is estimated that during 2015-2019, the financial sector created 22,000 jobs, 70% of which went to Singapore citizens, according to the MAS.

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