Unemployment rate continues to fall but the open job rate is still increasing. Why?
The Ministry of Manpower announced that unemployment rates were back to pre-COVID levels, with the overall unemployment numbers falling to 2.1% in February. The resident unemployment rate dropped to 3 percent within the same period with 71,700 residents unemployed; citizens' unemployment also declined to 3.2 percent to approximately 65,000 citizens.
“The high number of vacancies could bring rates down further, but at the same time, the downside risks in the global economy have increased – protracted supply chain disruptions and higher energy prices could affect business sentiments and profitability,” MOM said.
MOM Minister Tan See Leng said, "Employers are looking beyond conventional ‘plug-and-play’ options for hiring, and employees have been more open to new opportunities and learning new skills.” The plug-and-play approach is hiring an employee previously trained by a competitor, rather than training the workers to fit the hiring company’s needs. “With the recent easing of border restrictions and safe management measures, I am optimistic that our labour market situation will hold steady in the coming months.”
Employers and employees have shown remarkable resilience in the past 2 years and the resident unemployment rate was on par with the quarterly average in 2018 and 2019. The government will also continue to support businesses and workers through WSG, E2im SGUnited Jobs and Skill placement partners.
What are your strategies for hiring and retaining talents in this tight labour market?