Stratagem Recruitment Newsletter – February 2014

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Stratagem Recruitment Newsletter August 2014


"Fair Consideration Framework" from August 1st 2014

From 1st August, the MOM is operating the new “Fair Consideration Framework” (FCF) to make sure that Singaporeans and Singapore Permanent Residents are not unfairly overlooked in the employment market. Here is Stratagem’s explanation about the FCF and how it affects employers and job seekers.

What is the Fair Consideration Framework?  

It means that for any EP applications to be processed, the job must first be advertised for at least 14 days on the Singapore Government “JobsBank” website.

What is Jobsbank?
It’s a jobs website where companies can advertise their jobs for free. Only Singaporeans can apply to the jobs through that website though. You have to have a Singaporean ID or Permanent Resident ID to set up a user account.

So does that mean it’s harder to get EPs approved now?

Not necessarily. The criteria for EP approval are set separately, outside of the Fair Consideration Framework. The FCF only stipulates that when a company is applying for the EP, that the job has already been posted on Jobsbank for at least 14 days, allowing access to local candidates. When the employer applies for the EP, they have to state the Jobsbank “Job ID number” to show that the job was posted for the requisite time.

Are there any exceptions to this rule?

Yes there are:

  • Jobs in firms with 25 or fewer employees; or 
  • Jobs that pay a fixed monthly salary of S$12,000 and above (144k p.a.); 
  • Jobs to be filled by intra-corporate transferees. These would refer to those holding senior positions in the organisation or have an advanced level of expertise; or 
  • Jobs that are necessary for short-term contingencies (i.e. period of employment in Singapore for not more than one month)

As an employer, do I have to post the job myself or can I get an agency to do that?
Either is OK. Of course if you do not want to hire a foreigner for the role and will definitely not apply for an EP, there is no obligation to use Jobsbank anyway. However if you want to keep that option open, your agency can post the job and supply you with the Jobsbank “Job ID number” should the EP application become necessary at a later date.

So is the FCF likely to change the jobs market?
In our opinion, probably not a massive game changer. For the last couple of years at least, employers have been focusing on local hires and there has been a general decline in the number of expats, so if anything, Jobsbank will help create extra liquidity amongst an already sought after candidate pool.


Company specific updates (let us know if anything catches your eye…)

    A major corporate bank is strengthening both the KL and Singapore initiative to facilitate client clearing In light of the new OTC clearing regulations imposed by MAS. Targeting senior people in Singapore to move to KL.

     A new joint venture between two major oil producers has started an oil trading desk in Singapore.  They are looking for people from both banks and commodity houses across multiple functions.

    A major investment bank has opened their trade finance business in Singapore. This business area has been offered for a long time in Europe but they are now offering this service in Singapore.

    A mid tier bank are hiring senior operations managers for global markets. This has been a realtively quiet area for most houses in recent months.

    A major European global markets player is moving their valuations controller roles out to Chennai. These roles were previously considered “safe” from relocation due to the sensitivity and risk required locally in Singapore.

    A major US investment bank seem to be hiring aggressively especially in compliance where entire teams from other banks have been poached. Several senior ops managers have also moved to this house from a European competitor.

    One major bank's collateral management business is in the midst of restructuring and several front/back office staff have been let go recently.

    A team of senior managers from one US house have moved to a major commerical bank to set up client clearing for OTC derivatives which recently went live. There are now open roles for experienced clearing candidates in Singapore and the region.

    One local bank has been hiring people who were let go by the global market and transaction banking operations division of 2 major foreign houses in particlar.


    There are more jobs on our full jobs board:


Client Onboarding Change Management


70 -100k



Trade Finance Specialist

Asc -AVP

50 - 130k



Business Process Re-engineering





Investment Risk Analyst


80 - 120k



Head of Derivatives Middle Office  (KL)

VP or D

Generous KL



The rise of the “contract” role.
One recent feature of the jobs market is the increase in the number of short term contract roles. Although many candidates feel reluctant to leave a job for a 12 month or 18 month contract, these are often an ideal opportunity for candidates who are not currently working. As headcount is still very hard for line managers to secure, it is often easier to request approval for a fixed term contract. After that period has expired, it is normally much easier for a line manager to convert a contractor to perm. Most of the contractors who take on a fixed term contract are being converted to perm, as this reduces agency fees and it’s easier to get around head count constraints.
And for those who think that contract roles offer less long term job security its worth remembering that unless you are working in Europe, we are all working under “contract” conditions. Even so called “permanent” jobs can be terminated at very short notice with very little statutory rights for the employee, as recent events in the financial world have shown.

The Malaysia Effect
As the cost of doing business in Singapore increases, one of the knock on effects is that various roles have been moving to Malaysia. In recent months we have received several mid and senior roles for KL, including operations, clearing, compliance, middle office and so on. Malaysians who are working in Singapore and would like to return home are in high demand. One company is moving 800 operations jobs and 1000 IT jobs into KL.

New entrants into Singapore market
Despite the trend of several of the large Investment Banks of offshoring, there are still plenty of comapies who are targeting Singapore as their next growth phase.
One oil major is opening a trading desk here, A major bank has opened trade finance in Singapore, a major IB (who are also offshoring), recently moved some Hong Kong headcount to Singapore.

If you have any friends who would be interested in the above information or in our jobs board, please don’t hesitate to forward this mail to them. We welcome informal queries about the job market and are always happy to share our information with the wider market. We believe good people refer good people, so please do pass it on! 
Click here to forward to a friend:




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