Building Singapore's talent pool to take on bigger jobs

Experts said the shortfall of local talent in niche technology areas such as fintech, biotech, robotics software engineering or specialised applications of machine learning, is partly because Singapore does not have a large population, and it takes t
Experts said the shortfall of local talent in niche technology areas such as fintech, biotech, robotics software engineering or specialised applications of machine learning, is partly because Singapore does not have a large population, and it takes time to train people. The small labour pool is also why it is not common to find Singaporean company leaders in global firms.PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

Foreigners still needed for some roles, but locals being trained to move into higher posts

Despite efforts to boost the number of locals with skills which are in high demand, the need is still outstripping supply, so companies have to turn to foreigners to fill some of these positions.

Experts said this is especially so in niche technology areas such as fintech, biotech, robotics software engineering or specialised applications of machine learning. Other areas foreigners feature more prominently are in jobs involving a foreign firm's proprietary technology, or senior business leadership in foreign multinational companies.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 13, 2020, with the headline 'Building Singapore's talent pool to take on bigger jobs'. Print Edition | Subscribe