Singapore salaries to grow slower, hiring outlook mixed this year: survey

Some 21 per cent of firms polled said that payrolls would stay unchanged over the next six months. -- PHOTO: ST FILE
Some 21 per cent of firms polled said that payrolls would stay unchanged over the next six months. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Six in 10 workers here will see their salaries stay put or go up no more than 3 per cent this year, according to a new survey out Friday.

Some 21 per cent of firms polled said that payrolls would stay unchanged over the next six months, while 39 per cent intend to raise salaries from between zero to 3 per cent, local human resources firm Achieve Group found in its survey on hiring trends.

Meanwhile, 32 per cent of firms here plan to hike wages in the range of 3 per cent to 5 per cent, and just 8 per cent of firms intend to give their staff a boost of more than 5 per cent over the next six months.

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The survey polled close to 500 Singapore-based companies across nine sectors from late November to early December last year.

The hiring outlook for this year is more mixed.

While 49 per cent of firms polled said they will freeze hiring, 45 per cent said they would be recruiting more staff in the next six months. The remaining 6 per cent of firms polled plan to reduce their headcounts.

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"The top industries that will be hiring are healthcare and pharmaceuticals, shipping and logistics, and oil and gas - all of which featured amongst the top in our survey for the same period last year," Achieve's chief executive Joshua Yim said.

Mr Yim did note however that oil prices have tumbled since December, and if the downtrend persists, hiring activity in the oil and gas sector will come in lower than expected.