Matthieu Imbert-Bouchard, Managing Director, Robert Half Singapore
The future is looking bright for Singaporean IT workers seeking to capitalise on the benefits of flexible working arrangements. According to research commissioned by specialised recruiter Robert Half, an overwhelming majority of Singaporean CIOs (94 percent) are planning to increase their contract IT headcount by an average of 17 percent over the next 12 months.
There’s even better news for Singaporean contract IT workers specialising in IT security, database management, software/application development, technical support and operations, and business analysis as demand for temporary staff is strongest across these key sectors.
The benefits of temporary staffing for companies
There’s no doubt that Singapore’s IT leaders are fast recognising the benefits of flexible staffing. Companies are far better equipped to maintain business continuity and manage new projects by embracing more dynamic workforces which carefully balance permanent and temporary IT professionals. Through the flexibility of contract IT staff, companies can easily and quickly adjust their mix of skillsets to meet changing strategic and operational demands throughout the year.
With more than half of Singapore’s CIOs (57 percent) already adding more temporary IT workers to their headcount, this increased flexibility is cited as the biggest driver, followed by difficulties sourcing permanent staff and speed of hiring contract workers. This modern approach to hiring brings added cost efficiencies, as well as providing employers with access to Singapore’s rapidly growing pool of skilled IT professionals who are targeting temporary opportunities.
Hiring temporary workers also gives CIOs and business leaders the option to evaluate employees before hiring them permanently. Given the costliness of a bad hire, starting a new employee on a temporary basis allows both the employee and employer to evaluate the match and cultural fit before making a long-term commitment.
A richer and more fulfilling career fortemporary IT workers
For contract IT workers themselves, the benefits of temporary work often outweighs the perceived downfalls, a key reason why many professionals in Singapore’s IT space are considering short-term contracts. It is certainly not uncommon for temporary work to lead to a permanent job. If organisations wish to convert a temporary worker to a permanent position, they already have the advantage of being familiar with the employees strengths first hand, highlighting the potential of temporary work turning into permanent work.
The IT space is also incredibly fast-paced. IT professionals understand, now more than ever, the security of their careers hinges on their ability and willingness to continually learn and adapt to changing environments and technology. Contract work not only demonstrates adaptability, but it gives IT professionals the chance to upskill themselves through exposure to a diverse range of business functions, industries, and projects. Temporary opportunities are also invaluable for developing those interpersonal skills too as temporary workers must be able to communicate and collaborate effectively with many different personalities and levels of seniority.
Indeed, contract IT workers are set to become a more indespensible part of the workforce and industry then ever before.