Jobs report

95% of over 12,000 jobs available in ICT sector are for PMETs

About 7,190 people have been placed in jobs, traineeships and training positions in sector since April: MOM, IMDA

Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing and Manpower Minister Josephine Teo watching a Shopee Live demo showcase at the company's building in Science Park Drive yesterday. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO
Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing and Manpower Minister Josephine Teo watching a Shopee Live demo showcase at the company's building in Science Park Drive yesterday. ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

More than 12,000 jobs are on offer in the infocomm technology (ICT) sector, with the bulk of them - about 95 per cent - for professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs).

This is after about 7,190 job seekers were earlier placed in jobs, traineeships and training positions in the ICT sector between April and early this month, said the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) in a jobs situation report yesterday.

About 2,160 of them found jobs, with 85 per cent of these in PMET roles. Another 5,030 people were enrolled in attachment, traineeship and training opportunities.

This makes ICT, by far, the sector with the highest number of placements under the SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package, said Manpower Minister Josephine Teo at a media conference.

ICT PMET jobs include management and business consultant roles, with monthly salaries ranging from $5,250 to $7,500, with a median monthly pay of $6,500.

Meanwhile, the salaries for software, Web and multimedia developers range from $4,500 to $7,500 a month, with a median of $6,000.

Sales, marketing and business development managers can earn between $3,800 and $7,500, with a median of $5,500.

Often, there is a misconception that entering the sector requires deep industry knowledge, said Mrs Teo. However, some 30 per cent of the job openings are in "tech-lite" roles, which may be suitable for applicants without ICT background or experience.

Tech-lite roles include customer success managers, digital marketing specialists and pre-sales consultants. These roles may appeal more to mid-career individuals who are looking to switch careers into ICT, said MOM and IMDA.

There is strong demand for manpower in functions such as digital marketing, software engineering and cyber security, as well as for leaders to drive digital transformation across businesses, the agencies added.

To meet this growing demand, the workforce has to be reskilled and transformed.

Since 2015, more locals have taken up jobs in the ICT sector. Local employment has expanded by 17,000, forming 71 per cent of the sector's total employment of 190,200, said MOM and IMDA, adding that this does not yet include the growth for ICT personnel in other sectors of the economy.

To help locals access opportunities in this sector, the Government and the industry have adopted a three-pronged approach.

One way is by rolling out place-and-train programmes for new hires and reskilling of existing staff. Over the next three years, at least 5,500 job placement opportunities with firms will be developed.

Another approach is to offer company-hosted traineeships and attachments, particularly for those who may not have relevant experience. Currently, there are 4,900 such opportunities available.

In addition, efforts have been made across institutes of higher learning (IHL) to nurture and maintain a steadily growing talent pipeline. Intake into ICT courses and clusters at IHLs has grown by about 17 per cent over the last three years, with an intake of around 7,600 alone for the 2020 academic year.

The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the adoption of digital technologies, leading to the creation of new roles and more manpower demand in ICT.

Some companies saw it as an opportunity to hire and train staff as they shift towards growth areas. Others will be offering more training opportunities for job seekers.

Mrs Teo said: "The ICT sector will continue to grow, and we will continue with efforts to build up the pipeline of talent to meet this demand, guide job seekers into jobs, and provide career guidance to existing workers in this sector."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 25, 2020, with the headline '95% of over 12,000 jobs available in ICT sector are for PMETs'. Print Edition | Subscribe