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2023 Singapore and Hong Kong salary guide: HR, sales & marketing, and life science & healthcare

2023 Singapore and Hong Kong salary guide: HR, sales & marketing, and life science & healthcare

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A veteran HR director in Singapore could be taking home S$23,000 a month, while a similar role in Hong Kong could be earning HK$115,000 each month.

The 2023 Salary Guide: How Much Should You Earn? by Links International analyses past year job market changes and predicts 2023 trends and salaries in industries such as human resources, sales & marketing, and life science & healthcare.

Sharing an overview on the job markets in Singapore and Hong Kong, the report highlighted: "In Singapore, business activity has been booming with strong immigration and large-scale business conferences making it the Asian hub of choice (at least in the short term!) for businesses that both are opening and expanding.

"Unemployment rates in both Singapore and Hong Kong have continued to fall and clients are increasingly hiring candidates remotely from other countries to fill their talent needs in such a tight labour market."

The guide also noted "strong signs of tougher economic times ahead" with continued tightening of monetary policy and larger employee layoffs indicating a global recession, and a possible weaker labour market in 2023.

In that vein, the guide revealed the following:

Singapore

Human resources, administration & business support

Key trends

  • Most Singaporeans (56%) will leave their current jobs for a pay raise.
  • 37% of employees have already started looking for higher-paying jobs.
  • Of those hoping to receive a salary increment, only 50% believe they will get it in the next year.
  • A core area to improve on is investments in HR and administration systems which would be beneficial in the long run to keep updated with hiring trends.

Expected salaries

An entry-level HR director can expect S$12,000 a month, while an HR director at a veteran level can take home S$23,000.

Overall:

olive june 2023 linkssalaryguide hrrolessg

Sales & marketing

Key trends

  • The GST increase from 7% to 8% from 1 January 2023 and 8% to 9% from 1 January 2024, will cause Singaporeans to spend less on F&B, clothing & apparel, and food delivery.
  • Salaries across the industry are expected to remain stagnant and prices of goods and services are increasing causing more Singaporeans to worry about inflation effect and be more cautious of their spendings.
  • Retailers are offering promotions in response to the GST increase – for instance, Sheng Siong is offering a 1% discount on all but selected items to combat the GST increase.
  • Exponential growth of ecommerce in Singapore with the government offering online retail incentives to even small businesses.
  • Online retailers are expanding their availability of goods and services to social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.

Expected salaries

An entry-level marketing director can take home S$9,300 a month, while a veteran marketing director can expect S$18,600.

Overall:

olive june 2023 linkssalaryguide salesmarketingsg

Life science & healthcare

Key trends

  • The level of hiring is expected to drop slightly, especially for part-time and contract roles.
  • There may still be demand for roles such as public health, epidemiology, and vaccine-related jobs.
  • A more stable market as the pandemic eases and most of the world returns to its original way of life.
  • Even before COVID-19, Singapore's medical devices industry has grown every year with an expected compound annual growth rate of 8.4% between 2018 to 2023, and the market is projected to have a value of more than S$1bn in 2023.

Expected salaries

In clinical development, a veteran in clinical operation and regulatory affairs would both expect to earn S$11,000 per month, while someone of a similar seniority in a commercial business development role could earn S$17,500.

Overall:

olive june 2023 linkssalaryguide lifesciencesg

Hong Kong

Human resources, administration & business support

Key trends

  • The market remains competitive as companies value promising talent they can retain for many years, which results in candidates receiving competitive offers of pay increases which could reach up to 20%.
  • Tighter hiring budgets due to predicted recession, limiting salary increments with bonuses this year expected to be even lower than the past two years.
  • As a female-dominated industry, work-from-home will be a must for all candidates, especially for women running families.

Expected salaries

An HR director at an entry-level could earn HK$60,000 a month, while in the same position, a veteran could take home HK$115,000.

Overall:

olive june 2023 linkssalaryguide hrroleshk

Sales & marketing

Key trends

  • With the border fully reopening, the return of mainlanders will boost Hong Kong’s economy – with economists predicting a 2% to 5% growth in 2023.
  • Despite consumer spending dropping, consumer spending is expected to trend around HK$522,116mn in 2023 and HK$534,124mn in 2024, according to Trading Economics’ econometric models.
  • The Hong Kong Monetary Authority raised the base rate in November 2022, resulting in leading local banks announcing higher interest rates, causing a hit to Hong Kong consumer spending.
  • In early 2022, a report by the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce (HKGCC) found that sales & marketing lost 10% of professionals due to talent leaving Hong Kong, resulting in increased competition for talent.
  • Employers value a polished sales track record and experiences in finding new methods to conduct business development when hiring.
  • Candidates in 2023 are likely to pursue jobs with a hybrid working model despite 80% of marketers reporting back to the office in 2022 globally.
  • Marketing candidates are expected to have digital certificates in the areas of analytics, social media, project management, content management system and more.

Expected salaries

Entry-level marketing directors could be taking home HK$82,800 while veterans in the same position could be earning HK$144,900 a month.

Overall:

olive june 2023 linkssalaryguide salesmarketinghk

Life science & healthcare

Key trends

  • Even in a post-pandemic world, there is still a demand for vaccines as they develop to minimise the severity of COVID-19.
  • Hong Kong has the highest global life expectancy and is especially health consciousness, thus life science continues to be a hot market in the long run.
  • Over time, the industry has been steadily growing due to the high demand for professionals, thus candidates should work to stand out among the crowd.
  • Candidates are advised to equip themselves with the relevant skills and qualifications such as having a strong scientific background – especially for medical, bioengineering, or pharmaceutical roles.

Expected salaries

In the commercial sector, expected salaries for roles in marketing can range from HK$39,700 to HK$66,000 per month based on years of experience.

Overall:

olive june 2023 linkssalaryguide lifesciencehk


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