Singapore’s Business Confidence Index has shown an eight point increase to 129, ahead of the global average of 114.

The increase in confidence has resulted in more than 90% of businesses looking to maintain or increase their headcount this year, particularly in the sales and marketing sector.

The report released by Regus also revealed 58% of Singapore businesses saw a rise in revenues, and 52% experienced increased profits over the past year.

John Henderson, regional director for Regus APAC, said another finding from the survey was this shift from flexible working being a “nice to have” perk, to something necessary in the workplace.

“As younger people come into the workforce they have a very different attitude to work, placing flexibility and quality of life above more traditional considerations,” he said.

A separate report by PrimeStaff Management Services also found hiring will be the strongest in the sales, information technology, HR, and compliance and risk management sectors.

However, Ronald Lee, managing director of PrimeStaff, said despite the shortage of talent, it is not an employees’ market.

“The recruitment landscape now is about aligning and matching the expectation of the role requirements between the employer and employee. This is especially so for senior level positions,” Lee said.

Recruiters should consider assessing candidates’ EQ levels, promoting the company culture during interviews so potential hires will be able to decide if it will be a good fit, and take into consideration the candidates’ career plan in order to find the best recruit available.

“Taking a more holistic approach to the hiring process will help improve the retention rates of new hires,” Lee said.