Higher salaries on offer to attract top IT talent in Singapore

New research reveals exactly what incentives IT employers are using to attract and retain top performing talent. Read more here.

  • Top three initiatives used to attract top talent: Higher salary (47%), professional development (43%) and enhanced work culture (37%). 
  • Top three initiatives used to retain top talent: Employee benefits (41%), professional development (37%) and flexible working arrangements (37%). 

The ongoing skills shortage within Singapore’s IT sector continues to restrict innovation and growth, and as growth within the industry is dependent upon on the calibre of IT professionals, new research independently commissioned by specialist recruiter Robert Half reveals exactly what incentives IT employers are using to attract and retain top performing talent. 

What’s on offer to attract IT talent
With more than eight in 10 (83%) CIOs saying it is more challenging to attract qualified IT professionals to their organisation compared to five years ago, companies need to adjust their staff attraction initiatives in skills-short market. 

According to the survey of 75 CIOs in Singapore, IT employers are willing to pay a premium to staff their teams with the best talent. Almost half (47%) of CIOs are offering higher remuneration (base pay and/or bonus) to attract top IT talent. This is closely followed by 43% who are offering additional training and development opportunities, and 37% who are promoting an enhanced work culture, such as health and wellbeing programs. 

What’s on offer to retain IT talent 
Having a competitive edge in the market by having the best talent does not only rely on attracting the right employees, but also to keep them on board. To avoid losing their top performers, Singapore’s IT employers are being proactive in their approach to staff retention. The top three initiatives CIOs have focused on over the last three years to retain IT staff are employee benefits (41%), professional development (37%) and flexible working arrangements (37%) – which suggests that non-financial benefits are key to retain top performers. 

Matthieu Imbert-Bouchard, Managing Director of Robert Half Singapore said: “Money talks in a market where jobs are aplenty and skilled candidates in short supply. The IT industry is booming as it accelerates to keep pace with new and evolving technologies, with companies in Singapore struggling to hire new IT talent. Because of this, IT employers often need to offer above-average salaries to attract the best professionals.” 

“Companies, however, also need to think beyond salary. While salary is a key component of an overall remuneration policy, companies realise they also need to diversify their incentives offering to not only attract the best talent but also to retain them. Non-financial incentives, such as flexible working arrangements and professional development opportunities, have become increasingly popular and therefore provide a strong incentive for employees to remain with a company long-term and position an organisation as an employer of choice.” 

“Companies with the lowest turnover rates are the ones who have ongoing conversations with their staff about what motivates them – and act on it, to the extent possible. Those who continuously benchmark salaries, provide challenging work and are able to tailor the remuneration package to the individual employee’s needs will be most successful at attracting and keeping top performers long term.”


About the research
The annual study is developed by Robert Half and was conducted in June 2018 by an independent research firm, surveying 75 CIOs/CTOs in Singapore. This survey is part of the international workplace survey, a questionnaire about job trends, talent management and trends in the workplace.  


Katherine Mills
Public Relations Manager, Asia Pacific
P: +61 2 8028 7757
E: [email protected]