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Is contract hiring the solution to Singapore's talent shortage?

As the talent shortage continues to cause headaches within the region, more bosses in Singapore are hiring contract workers to fill vacancies.

According to the latest Singapore Contracting Survey from Robert Walters, contract employment in Singapore is on the rise as hiring managers utilise such staff to address challenges in permanent headcount approvals.

Polling 300 local professionals, the survey found a majority of headcount freezes are often directed by head offices which leave hiring managers in Singapore searching for a flexible interim workforce solution.

"The reality of the current employment market across sectors is that permanent headcount restrictions exist," Joel Hides, director, Robert Walters Singapore commented.

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"When news around a hiring freeze is released, this usually results in an increase in contracting opportunities. Hence, specialist contractors in Singapore are now seeing a higher percentage of jobs available for short-term employment. These opportunities are excellent chances of gaining experience in varied industries."

Echoing this, the report found that 46% of professionals see contracting as an opportunity to gain more experience, better exposure and learn new skills.

Four out of 10 (40%) of contractors even stated that getting converted from a temporary to a permanent position is important but not essential.

The report added "the inclusion of contracting professionals in the workforce planning of organisations in Singapore has proven to be a viable option".

"Employers have the option of accessibility to specialist skills when needed for project-based assignments, maternity cover or filling in for permanent headcount freezes."

In addition, it explained line managers are also able to trial the contractor for skill sets, cultural fit and soft skills before deciding if they would like to convert the position to a permanent role.

The report also shed light into the best ways of recruiting and retaining such temporary professionals.

Eight out of 10 contract workers stated they prefer contracts of six months or more.

More than half (55%) stated they wished to attain monetary incentives from their jobs, while 50% said they wanted effective communication with management.

contract workers


Image: Shutterstock

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