Unlike in many countries, working in English-speaking Singapore is legal (with the right visa) for female expats, and there are countless international companies and fabulous small businesses offering challenging roles. This fact, coupled with affordable, accessible childcare, means that Singapore has plenty to offer women seeking work. The flip side is that it’s not always easy to find the right job. Starting from scratch in any foreign country is a challenge, too, as is learning about the local job market, visa rules and regulations, and workplace culture. We sought advice from a successful job seeker, recruiter and executive coach about how to kick-start a career here.
Visas: things to know
- The Fair Consideration Framework allows affirmative discrimination and employers are required to consider Singaporeans fairly before hiring Employment Pass (EP) holders.
- A quota system regulates the ratio of foreign and local workers in the workplace.
- Dependant-pass holders are entitled to work once they have a Letter of Consent, which their employer can apply for. It’s a relatively straightforward process and applications are generally processed quickly by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).
- While it’s not impossible, those on visitor passes hoping to apply for EPs may find it more of a struggle to get a job. Karin Clark says it is increasingly difficult for employers to get approval to hire foreigners.
- In 2014 the MOM has placed a strong an emphasis on the quality of the educational qualifications and institutions that the applicant has attended when assessing applications.
- For a preliminary indication of the likelihood of obtaining an EP or S Pass, use the online Self-Assessment Tool prior to submitting the application. Also, check the MOM list of strategic skills in current demand, and skill-sets that are expected to be in strong demand in the coming years.
Tips for getting a job in Singapore
- Make sure your resume is up-to-date, and tailor your references to suit the job you are going for. These should reassure the hiring manager that you truly have the right skills for the role.
- Make sure you have all your official documents including birth certificates, personal identification and university transcripts at the ready. Singapore-based employers will likely ask for these and you may need to provide original copies.
- Put together a portfolio showcasing your relevant skills and experience. This can be hard copy, digital or on a website.
- Find out which recruiters are specialists in your field and go straight to them. See which company is posting jobs you’re interested in and call them. You’ll have a much better chance of breaking through the noise if they’ve met you and identified you as suitable talent.
- Get out and start networking. Many expats find jobs through their networks rather than applying for jobs blindly.
- Be realistic about your salary. Remember that Singapore’s low tax rate will often offset a lower base salary.
- Spend time searching for a job every day until you get one. Searching can be a full-time job in itself. Stay determined and active.
- Attend interviews, even if you’re not 100 percent sure you want the position. Many companies can create roles for the right person, but they have to meet you first.
- Don’t be surprised if you’re asked personal questions, including your religion and whether you have children, at interviews.
- It’s common to be asked to submit a photograph with your resume.
Find jobs in singapore here – Singapore jobs