Select region:

Singapore Tech Staffing: Hiring Freeze alongside Strong Job Market

The global tech ecosystem has been going through a roller coaster of sorts in the past 1-over year with no clear indication where the next curve will lead.

In 2021, the drive for digital transformation and e-commerce kept hirings strong and salaries on an upward climb. But with the turn of the year to 2022, hiring and salary freezes began hitting the headlines.

Big Tech companies like Meta announced slashes in hiring plans and Google CEO called on employees to improve productivity, while Microsoft, Oracle and Twitter laid off staff.

On the home front, Singapore-based Sea Group has been laying off staff around Southeast Asia in its e-commerce arm Shopee, while Singapore-headquartered has laid off 260 staff.

As the world braces for rising inflation in the year ahead, more news of impending layoffs are emerging from big tech firms, casting an enormous amount of uncertainty on tech job prospects.

Strong demand for tech talents in spite of layoffs

Beneath these job market jitters, however, there is a still-hot talent market in Singapore and the tech hiring scene is going strong.

As many large firms and SMEs across industries in Singapore have already begun their digital transformation during the 2-year pandemic, most are not putting aside their plans but are going ahead with their transformation initiatives.

This means that tech talents such as programmers, data engineers, developers, user interface designers are required in almost every sector to create and manage the digital products and services needed.

Though tech talents may not have as much bargaining power today as in 2021, every tech candidate in the job market has been receiving multiple offers. As companies in Singapore are hiring from the same pool of tech talents, and the government has put in place a tight employment pass policy for foreign talents, most tech talents are hired within weeks of being in the job market.

For tech candidates with unique skill sets, employers are especially eager to secure their hiring with significant bonuses and pay packages.

Strong hiring in Singapore’s financial sector

Adding greater heat to the vibrant tech hiring scene, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) announced on May 19 that there will be more than 9,400 new jobs in the financial sector in 2022. Of these there will be 3,000 new tech jobs, with 700 roles for software developers and engineers.

These new tech positions will support the design and development of digital financial services and trade finance, blockchain technology, and use of artificial intelligence to detect fraud and money laundering.

In addition to these, a number of major financial institutions in Singapore have plans to hire more. These institutions have been growing their tech talent pool in response to the accelerated adoption of digital services in the last 2 years. In the months ahead, they are looking to further build their teams, particularly in the areas of data, cyber security, infrastructure and software development.

Huge potential for tech hiring in Fintech firms

Of note, in particular, are the developments in the finance sub-sectors. New trends in financial services are emerging continually and these are adding fuel to the demand for tech talents.

One area that is showing enormous growth is the digital economy. Today, nonbank companies, such as retailers, insurance companies, telcos, are increasingly offering financial services embedded in non-financial platforms in the form of e-wallet and payments amongst many others. One example of which is the Grab app where users can book rides and order food, as well as access their monies.

Alongside this, more and more financial institutions are becoming digital ecosystem players, offering customers non-financial services through their platforms. One example of which is the offer of travel-themed credit cards alongside hotel bookings.

The proliferation of such services mean that new technologies and capabilities in embedded finance and banking as a service (Baas) are required in both nonbank and banking companies. Fintech companies serving such companies will thus require talents with these capabilities, adding to an already great demand for tech talents.

Another area that will be requiring tech talents is sustainable finance, also known as green finance. In recent years, financial institutions have been building up capabilities in the design and customisation of green finance instruments and solutions, as well as supporting businesses that are adopting environmentally sustainable practices. At the same time, firms are actively building a pipeline of talents and are looking to groom Singaporean talent in this area, making this an opportune avenue for tech talents to grow their careers.

In-demand tech skills

Landing tech jobs with good career prospects in the growing sectors, however, require skillsets that companies urgently need to fuel their digital drive. Candidates can no longer be armed with just Java architecture and UX/UI development, but must possess one or more of the following skills:

  • Data analytics

Data analytics is required in a large number of industries; some jobs that require data analytics include Business Intelligence Analyst, Data Analyst, Data Engineer, Quantitative Analyst.

  • Cyber security

Cybersecurity knowledge is particularly in demand in the areas of cyber governance, vulnerability as well as network and operating systems security. With the recent cases of security breaches, there are now numerous opportunities for cybersecurity specialists in government agencies, tech firms and telecommunications companies.

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI)

AI specialists are in high demand across industries as companies are increasingly doing away with manual work. Several options are available in the AI field as well, with many top jobs in Machine Learning, Deep learning, Data Science, Neural network architecture and Business Intelligence.

  • Software development

Software development is a huge, growing, and highly diverse field where Front end developers, Back end developers, Full stack developers, Mobile developers and DevOps Engineers are some of the most in-demand professionals currently.

  • Infrastructure architecture

Infrastructure Architects play a key role in designing and implementing information systems that support an enterprise infrastructure. As companies across industries increasingly push through their digital transformation initiatives, the need for Infrastructure Architects is becoming all the more crucial.

As Singapore’s economy continues to pick up speed in the post-Covid recovery, there is no limit in sight to the need for tech talents in Singapore. According to Ravi Menon, managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, the number of unfilled tech jobs across the economy is an estimated 19,000 each year.

With Singapore continuing her growth as a financial hub and as new financial services emerge and take shape, the prospects for tech talents remain bright. There will be a great need for tech talents in every sector along with an equally great demand for new skills.


Achieve Search & Selection is the Leading Recruitment Agency for Tech Staffing Services!
ACHIEVE Group can help businesses and jobseekers navigate the hiring scene by providing timely advisories and customised search and selection solutions that include permanent staffing, contract staffing and payroll outsourcing arrangements.

A recruitment consultancy in the Asia Pacific for over 30 years, ACHIEVE Group is a Human Capital Partner (HCP) and Singapore Prestige Brand Award (SPBA) winner, recognised for commitment to progressive employment practices and business transformation.

For any queries on hiring programmes, staffing arrangements or happenings in the job market, please reach out to us at or 63230050.