Singapore moves into Top 10 preferred work destinations

Updated: Aug 24, 2021

Singapore has been listed in the Top 10 global work destinations, according to a survey by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), SEEK Asia (which owns JobStreet), and The Network.

The Global Talent Survey which was conducted in 190 countries and included input from 209,000 people, showed Singapore rising ten spots in global ranking, earning the eighth position for most attractive destination for global talent.

Improvements in rankings were also observed in other Asia-Pacific nations, including Malaysia, South Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.

“Singapore, Australia and Japan have now become the three most attractive destinations among respondents in the {Asia-Pacific] region, while the survey noted previously favoured destinations like the US have been left out of the list,” it said.

The survey also revealed a shift in respondents own ambitions for moving abroad. Contrary to three years ago when 95% of professionals from Thailand had wanted to migrate for work, only 46% were keen for an international move in 2020.

“Singapore saw a gradual shift as well, with only 44% of employees keen to migrate abroad compared to 70% in 2018," the survey report noted. "The pandemic had much to do with the fall.”

However, Asia Pacific is now being seen as an increasingly attractive destination because of the management and strategies implemented in handling the pandemic.

The Covid-19 pandemic additionally impacted the likability of destinations, with New York, Barcelona, Madrid and Rome considered a less favourable destination for work than they were in 2018.

Meanwhile, Malaysia jumped 23 spots to the 19th position in 2020, with Indonesia, China, Syria, Nigeria, India, Pakistan, Yemen, Thailand and Qatar were revealed as some of the top countries where professionals wanted to come to Malaysia to work.

SEEK Asia's chief marketing officer Ramesh Rajandran said Malaysia was a clear success story as an employment destination due to the pandemic becoming a key factor in how global talent view employers.

“The study showed Malaysians are now less keen on working abroad, as JobStreet data showed only 40% of respondents in the country showed interest in working abroad, compared to 65% in 2018," he said. "Looking at sectors, social care and human resources employees are the least likely to wish to move abroad, with 21% and 24% unwilling to do so, respectively. This was followed by administration and secretarial, together with finance and auditing personnel at 34%.”

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