REPORT TEASER: Technology 2020, Predictions vs Reality

    Kerry Consulting

    Foreword – Technology Hiring in Singapore 2020

    2020 has been a strange one. We crossed over into 2020, with expectations that the strong demand for technology focused hiring we witnessed in 2019 would continue. For the best part of Q1 2020, the prediction seemed spot on.

    Then came COVID-19. Most plans came to a standstill as management teams grappled with the realities of how the pandemic would impact their business in the short, medium and long term. Questions around the viability of the business were brought into focus and management shied away from making investments which may not bear fruit.

    Adding to the uncertainty brought about by the pandemic, the US-China tensions and the on-going struggles between Hong Kong and China, resulted in hesitation around making major business decisions.

    With the easing of the circuit breaker and the economy adjusting to the new normal, hiring activity in technology and digital is slowly recovering to pre-COVID-19 levels. One of the positive outcomes from COVID-19 has been the focus to drive digitalisation and foster innovation in line with shifts in business and consumer behaviour.

    The general drive towards becoming more digital is creating demand for technology specialists in multiple roles, including:

    • Software engineering
    • Data analytics/artificial intelligence
    • Cybersecurity
    • Cloud computing
    • Digital product owners

    In Singapore, there is a notable surge in hiring by financial services firms, largely supported by initiatives undertaken by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) as well as the Ministry of Manpower. For instance, DBS, OCBC and Citi all look to be bulking up their tech teams significantly with software engineers and data scientists.

    The digital banking licences to be issued by MAS are expected to lead to the creation of new positions, especially senior ones, preferably filled by individuals who have accumulated industry experience within the local market.

    Reflecting on our predictions for 2020, while COVID-19 created a significant hiccup in technology recruitment, we expect that the recovery will be strong, as management teams come to the realisation that investments in technology are not nice-to-haves but are critical to ensuring that their company is equipped for the future.

    That was the foreword of “Technology Hiring Singapore: 2020 Predictions vs Reality”. 

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