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The average annual increase in the number of lawyers at the top four Singapore law firms could be between 10% and 15%.

An employee claimed that the company promised higher salaries this year. This was not due to a promotion.

Not every law firm in Singapore adjusts compensation packages to hot labor markets.

DBS is the biggest lender in Southeast Asia. It told reporters in May that it would spend 25 million Singapore Dollars ($18.23million), on salary hikes.

SPH Media Trust is a news publisher and editor. It said it had just done a salary review to bring remuneration closer in line with market standards.

Tech giants Google, Amazon, and Microsoft have announced they will increase salaries for their employees.

According to Cynthia Ang (executive director at Kerry Consulting), the average increments this year are significantly higher. Talent is a valuable commodity that companies are willing to pay more for, particularly if it’s not plentiful in an industry.

New benefits

Singapore companies make adjustments to employee benefits like bonuses, mental health support, and flexible working policies.

“The Singapore labor force has been looking towards or considering tangible aspects of the deal, such as benefits and pay, as a major competitive battleground,” said Lewis Garrad (Mercer Singapore’s career management leader).

Mercer surveyed 270 businesses and found that 60% of them had reviewed their benefits for 2021. This is an increase of at least 10% from previous years, when the rate was between 10% and 15%.

Prudential Singapore gave $1,000 worth shares to each employee in October 2021. Neetha Naair is the leader of a team that plans for the future and stated that Prudential Singapore provided $1,000 worth of shares to each employee in October 2021.

Randstad Singapore was opened to employees in February. It allows them to work remotely up to four weeks per year, Daljit Sall, general manager of technology at the company, told reporters.

Our well-being is improving.

Cynthia Ang


An employee from the local government stated that this year more people were promoted than in previous years.

He stated that there is a limit on the number of people. They seemed to be keen to support all who are worthy, however.

Finn Partners now offers two payouts for employees who refer Finn Partners employees. If the referee stays with Finn Partners for at most one calendar year, the payouts will be split. Safina Samian, a partner in this communications agency, is eligible for this bonus.

Samian said that Finn Partners offers four days of mental wellbeing leave to its employees and $100 per annum for a subscription in a wellness app. Samian stated that Finn Partners offers half-day off Fridays.

Kerry Consulting’s Ang stated that “We are seeing a greater range of well-being benefits.” He also mentioned self-care days and no-meeting days.

‘Talent war’

Some companies claimed the greater benefits were part of wider talent retention efforts to counter the Great Resignation. This is a global trend.

A senior DBS staffer requested anonymity as he was not permitted to talk to the media. He stated that the bank had increased salaries to maintain morale, and to “ensure that we don’t lose the current talent fight that you see in Singapore.” “

Lee Yan Hong, head of group human resources at the bank, stated that the increments were made in order to “ensure our employees continue to be paid competitively to market.” “

SPH Media Trust spokesperson said that salaries were being raised to “maintain competiveness in recruiting and maintaining talent”.

But, not all companies can explain why they have made the changes.

Reporters were informed by the lawyer who received a 40% raise that it was just reviewing its pay.

He suggested that they might offer more attractive salaries to keep up with international firms or to make up for the difference in prices. He didn’t have any evidence supporting his speculation.

Adrian Tan, President, Singapore’s Law Society stated in January that 538 lawyers had left the legal profession by 2021. This is a record. This represents a 30% increase on the previous year.

Extremely tight job market

With a highly competitive Singapore labor market, recent reviews of salaries and benefits are underway.

Garrad of Mercer stated, “We’re in a very tight labor marketplace.” He said that Singapore relies on foreign talent, and Covid-19 has made attracting such workers difficult over the past 20 years.

According to official data, Singapore has not been affected in any way by the Great Resignation. It is possible that different industries experience varying turnovers, and the average “hides many changes,” he told reporters.

He stated that talent is highly sought-after in certain sections of the workforce, such as life sciences and tech.

He stated, “This creates an atmosphere in which HR functions continue forecasting increased competition for talent. They take action. “

Data from Ministry of Manpower shows that the number of unfilled jobs in 2021 was at their highest point in more than a decade. 35% of these positions were unfilled for more than six months, compared to 27% in 2020. This is despite a general downward trend.

According to government data, the rate of attrition in Singapore’s Public Sector has increased. According to government data, the resignation rate for managers reached 9.9% in the last decade.

According media reports, Singapore’s Public Service Division announced that 23,000 employees would receive salary increases of between 5 and 14%.

Senior DBS staff stated that pay increases “stemmed the tide of the Great Resentment” for the bank.

Lee, DBS’ group human resource head, stated that the voluntary attrition rates for 2021 were comparable to the pre-pandemic period. They were either equal or lower than the market averages in our core country countries.

A SPH Media Trust employee said she was not in any hurry to get a job due to the 20% pay raise.

There are other factors that are important.

An ex-lawyer who received a 40% bonus said he left law to “enjoy more hours”. “

A local media company employee who was promoted and whose salary increased by 40% stated that he would consider changing jobs if it meant that it would be more difficult to find a better job.

Samian said that Finn Partners has experienced a 100% increase in employee referrals since the referral bonus was increased. He noted that there is a need for more qualified candidates in highly competitive markets.

Looking ahead

Garrad from Mercer stated that aggressively competing for pay may not be sustainable in the long-term.

He stated that companies have begun to remove financial incentives from roles not considered mission-critical.

Economic fears are rising and things could be changing

He stated that some people are considering freezing their employment to reduce recession risk.

Kerry Consulting’s Ang said that the economy is in the middle of a recovery, with companies expanding and hiring.

She said that she believed the taper would occur within six to twelve months.