Interesting Facts about Workforce in Singapore

by Emma • Fri, 05 Aug 2022 14:59PM
Interesting Facts about Workforce in Singapore

Singapore is recognized for its thriving economy, affluent way of life, and high paying jobs. Workforce in Singapore is widely known to be among the most productive group of workers globally. These factors, along with a good standard of life and a friendly multicultural community, reflect why Singapore has become so popular among graduates who are seeking employment. Here are some interesting facts about the workforce in Singapore as reported by the Ministry of Manpower Singapore.

Latest Statistic: Second Quarter of 2022

The workforce in Singapore continued to improve at a steady rate in the second quarter of 2022, according to preliminary data of employment, unemployment, and layoffs. After the considerable easing of border restrictions starting in April 2022, there was an increase in total employment, with more residents finding work and non-resident employment returning strongly. Both the unemployment rate and the number of layoffs stayed at pre-COVID levels. Compared to the first quarter of 2022, total employment increased by 64,400 (or 1.9%) in the second quarter (42,000; 1.2%). Compared to the prior quarter, non-resident employment rose more significantly while resident employment increased steadily.

The concentration of resident employment growth in emerging industries like information & communications, professional services, and financial services in 2Q 2022 suggests that resident job growth to date has been for higher-skilled occupations. Similar to the previous quarter, a greater amount of the overall growth in employment was ascribed to non-residents, mostly in the manufacturing and construction industries, which employ a smaller proportion of residents. Employers in these industries have been hiring to fill open positions and keep up with the increased demand since the dramatic relaxation of border controls in April of this year. You can read the full report here.

Read Also: Work From Home Jobs to Take in Singapore 

2021 at a Glance

The key indicators of the workforce in Singapore performed better in 2021 than in 2020, according to this research. In other cases, performance levels have even surpassed or recovered to pre-COVID levels. From 64.5% in June 2020 to 67.2% in June 2021, the employment rate increased dramatically. Additionally, it surpasses June 2019 (65.2%). Men, women, elderly, and youth all saw a rise in employment, which was supported by the government's SGUnited Jobs and Skills Package. Expectedly, the demand for labor caused by COVID-related operations contributed to some of the increase in the employment rate. However, there were also more people living in Singapore who had steady employment.

Here are some important highlights from the report:

  • Workforce in Singapore status as of 2021 was 2,397,800 people, with 2,286,500 people employed and the rest were unemployed.
  • Throughout 2021, the labor force participation rate rose at a faster pace compared to previous 5 years, which is 70.5% in total.
  • The employment rate of the workforce in Singapore (people aged 25 to 64) increased significantly in 2021. From 2016 to 2020, the number was steady at 80.3%, then it increased to 81.8% in 2021.
  • Although remaining above pre-covid rates, the time-related under-employment rate eased. It was 4.1% in 2020 and it decreased to 3.5% in 2021. 
  • The real income growth at 20th percentile was higher (2.7% p.a.) than median income growth (2.1% p.a.)  in the last 5 years from 2016 to 2021.
  • Compared to the previous decade, participation of the female workforce in Singapore increased by 2.6%, from 44.2% in 2011 to 46.8% in 2021.
  • Compared to the previous decade, there was more tertiary-educated distribution by highest qualification attained. Workers with degree and diploma/professional qualification made up 46.5% of the workforce in Singapore in 2011. Ten years later, in 2021, these groups of workers made up 61.5% of the country’s labor force.
  • Compared to the previous decade, the number of Professionals, Managers, Executives & Technicians occupational groups increased from 52.7% to 62.1% in 2021. Two occupational groups; Clerical, Sales & Service Workers and Production & Transport Operators (including  Cleaners & Laborers) decreased in 2021.

You can read the full report here.

Future job growth is anticipated to continue to be dominated by non-resident employment as it comes up to its pre-COVID level, according to the Ministry of Manpower Singapore. Since December 2021, resident employment has increased by around 4% over pre-COVID levels. However, given that the resident labor supply is expected to decline as the unemployment rate declines, resident employment growth of the workforce in Singapore may be somewhat slower going forward.

Read Also: Factors to Consider Before Accepting a Job Offer 

Image source: freepik


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