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At the end of 2017, there continued to be a strong demand for technology professionals across most industries in Singapore.
We observed a hiring trend focused on local technology talent. However, it has been common to see organisations extending their talent search internationally to find technology experts in the areas of software engineering, DevOps and cybersecurity.
We have seen several multinational (MNC) commerce organisations increasing or maintaining investments in Internet of Things (IoT) and Smart City initiatives. We saw an increase in demand for professionals skilled in embedded software solutions as well as front-end development.
Ongoing demand for cloud computing, Big Data and open source talent
Throughout 2017, we continued to see, in the banking and financial services space, a healthy hiring volume for developers, application support specialists and cybersecurity professionals.
Professionals with exposure to cloud computing, Big Data and open source technologies continued to pique the interest of banks and financial services firms. Experts within these areas have been commanding higher than average salary increments.
Data science hiring surged in 2017
Recruitment in the data science area has also surged throughout 2017. While we continued to observe that companies in the banking and insurance industries were actively hiring data science and data analytics specialists, these specialists were also in demand across other industries.
Professionals who were both commercial and technical were able to command a higher than average salary increase.
Risk and compliance hires were on the rise
In 2017, banks continued to be actively hiring temporary and contract employees to support project initiatives in meeting regulatory and consolidation needs. Banks were putting an emphasis on projects that aligned with compliance requirements, as new regulations were being introduced to mitigate banking risk and security.
The changing regulatory landscape saw banks continued having an increased demand for business analysts and project management professionals experienced in regulatory reporting (for example, Basel III reporting), MiFID, AML, and financial crime.
Information security and cybersecurity talent thrived
We also observed, in 2017, that banking and financial services firms in Singapore continued to have an unwavering demand for professionals in these two specialised areas where talent is scarce. Firms have been fiercely competing for these professionals, including IT security operations specialists, penetration testers and cybersecurity management consultants.
Cybersecurity expertise in threat monitoring, assessment and response have been in demand. Additionally, we noticed a surge in the number of US-headquartered cybersecurity consulting firms setting up in Asia. These firms were actively seeking talent in cybersecurity areas.
Bright outlook for tech professionals in 2018
In the months ahead in 2018, we anticipate a continued high demand for technology talent in Singapore. Experienced software engineers and DevOps engineers, as well as data scientists, cloud and Big Data specialists, will continue to attract employers and can expect competitive remuneration.
Various IoT and Smart City initiatives will continue to drive the demand for talented software engineers with experience in these areas. Companies will continue to seek exceptional developers across a myriad of programming languages.
In supporting regulatory needs, we also foresee financial firms to continue seeking business analysts, project managers and developers. These firms will also actively seek experienced cybersecurity professionals who are rare in the market.
Salary Report for H1 2018*
Commerce & Industry
Years of experience
Annual salary range (S$)
Chief Information Officer
Senior IT Manager
RDBMS Developer / DBA
Solutions Director / Head of Presales
Solutions Architect / Presales
Network or Systems Engineer / 3rd line Support
Capacity Planning Engineer
Capacity Planning Manager
IT Security Director
IT Security Manager
IT Security Analyst
Helpdesk / Desktop Support
Helpdesk Team Lead / Manager
Banking & Financial Services
Years of experience
Annual salary range (S$)
Chief Information Officer (D to MD)
Senior IT Manager
Program Manager (VP to D)
Project Manager (AVP to VP)
Business Analyst (AVP to VP)
Development Director (D to MD)
Solutions Architect (VP to SVP)
Development Manager (VP to SVP)
Infrastructure Director (D to MD)
Infrastructure Manager (VP)
Infrastructure Engineer (AVP)
Trading Systems Support (Front Office)
Info Security Director (VP to D)
Info Security Specialist (AVP to VP)
*Notes about salary table:
Titles and levels vary from organisation to organisation.
The salary ranges given are only approximate guides. For tailored salary advice, please contact us directly.
12-month base salaries are assumed.
All other benefits and bonuses are in addition to these figures.
Bonus ranges can vary significantly from company to company and will be influenced by market conditions, business and individual performances. Bonus ranges from 1 month at the low end to 100%+ at the upper.
Holiday entitlements range from 12–25 days with senior executives not usually receiving less than 18 days. Less than 15 is very rare and 20 days is becoming the norm.
Healthcare policies are standard.
Pension plans vary with some companies offering greater than the standard contribution. Top up schemes can increase employer contribution levels as much as 15–20% of the base salary for senior executives.
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