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Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

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bold_brave_spirit
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Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby bold_brave_spirit » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 10:13 am

Hello. I'm an IT Manager based in Toronto and I'm planning to move to Singapore by end of 2017 to be closer to family, though that said, I'm not a Singaporean and will need an EP to be in Singapore. I'd love some feedback about the most effective way to pin down a job in Singapore while still in Canada.

I've got over 14 years experience in the Retail IT space and have sent my resumes to a couple of Linked-In postings. I'd say out of 10 applications, I've probably gotten a response from 1 to 2. I've even interviewed for those 2 roles only to have the conversations go cold when they realize that I won't be in Spore for another 1.5 to 2 months.

To ask the obvious here, are the chances of nailing a job that much better when already physically in Singapore or does it not really make a difference regardless if you're on site or not? The reason I ask is to try and understand what the mindset is from recruiters and companies around hiring local and hiring foreigners. I've heard of people getting recruited while still not in Singapore and others who intentionally drop everything, pack their bags and decide to move to Spore and then get a job.

Thinking out loud, my gut tells me that seeing a person in front of you and having a face to face conversation is so much more conducive to getting to know an applicant vs doing a remote interview on Skype. But ultimately, I'm blind to the hiring politics in Singapore when comparing a local vs foreign talent. To be honest, I can't seem to pin the mechanics down, some recruiters have said that they only hire local talent and then there are other HR recruiters that jump at my application right away. I can't seem to get a feel for how it works - I would have thought that its about hiring someone with the best qualifications and fair game.

If anyone can lend insight, that would be great. It would give me peace of mind to know what I'm getting into in advance of my big move so that I'm not walking into a Singapore move that's going to end up as a dud and disappointment.

Thanks in advance.

Bold Brave Spirit

aki01
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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby aki01 » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 11:02 am

when you say you are planning to move here because of family - do you already have a dependants pass or are you planning to get one ?

bold_brave_spirit
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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby bold_brave_spirit » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 11:21 am

Let me look at that. I'm not sure if I can get a dependent's pass. I'm in my late 30's. My plan is to get a job in Spore and get an EP.

aki01
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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby aki01 » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 11:28 am

let me narrow it down - when you say family are you talking about wife, husband, son or daughter that is in singapore now ?

bold_brave_spirit
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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby bold_brave_spirit » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 11:33 am

Parents live in Spore. :)

I'm planning to be closer to them since they're in their late 70's. Mother is PR. Father is Spore Citizen.

I'm 100% Canadian with no ties to Spore.

bgd
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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby bgd » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 11:38 am

If you search the forums here then the general advice is that you need to be in the country. That's no guarantee but it gives you a better chance.

Your searches will also show you that the job market, particularly in IT, isn't good here. That said, I don't know anything about retail. They are big on shopping so perhaps you have a desired skill set. :D

bold_brave_spirit
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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby bold_brave_spirit » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 11:45 am

Thanks for the feedback bgd!

That's what i gathered after snooping around here too - best to be on the island before they even engage you seriously.

What did you mean by 'IT isn't good here.' Just curious. I'm not a developer so not sure how you meant the comment.

Yes - have subject matter skills in retail systems so that is a plus...I think.

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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby aki01 » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 12:05 pm

here is my advice, based on experience and observations in the tech space the past couple of years:

1. have a singapore address and phone number as your contact details so it appears you are in singapore
2. identify all major tech companies that are in singapore (SAP, SFDC, Cisco, Facebook, Linkedin, Dell etc) and see what roles they are hiring for that match your skills. You can filter this easily on Linkedin job search.
3. figure out who the actual hiring manager is - if its for an IT Manager position, who is the IT Director on LinkedIn - send them a personalized message directly. If they're non-singaporean you stand a better chance of them responding and setting up an interview for you.
4. dont wait until you're here to do the above

Lastly, don't limit yourself to Singapore. There are loads of jobs in Malaysia for your skills and if your primary goal is to be close to your parents you will have a much better success rate securing interviews and jobs in ML over Singapore. From there you can work your way back to Singapore.

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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby x9200 » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 12:24 pm

bold_brave_spirit wrote:Hello. I'm an IT Manager based in Toronto and I'm planning to move to Singapore by end of 2017 to be closer to family, though that said, I'm not a Singaporean and will need an EP to be in Singapore. I'd love some feedback about the most effective way to pin down a job in Singapore while still in Canada.

I've got over 14 years experience in the Retail IT space and have sent my resumes to a couple of Linked-In postings. I'd say out of 10 applications, I've probably gotten a response from 1 to 2. I've even interviewed for those 2 roles only to have the conversations go cold when they realize that I won't be in Spore for another 1.5 to 2 months.

Did they also realize you needed a work pass?
What is it that makes you distinctively different from the local retail IT managers?

bold_brave_spirit
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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby bold_brave_spirit » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 12:28 pm

Thanks for the feedback aki01!

bgd
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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby bgd » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 5:57 pm

bold_brave_spirit wrote:
What did you mean by 'IT isn't good here.' Just curious. I'm not a developer so not sure how you meant the comment.


Outsourcing to cheaper locations.
Not many large projects are run from Sg anymore.
Locals rather than foreigners unless you have niche skills
Local firms are used to cheap labour
And the list goes on...

But rents are cheaper than they were :D

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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby brian_singapore » Tue, 03 Oct 2017 8:20 pm

The hiring cycle in Singapore takes a lot longer then 1.5-2 months.

I think your experience is your answer. The reason it went cold when they realized you weren't here was because they won't recruit people who aren't here.

The other 8/10 hiring managers realized you weren't here before speaking with you.

Recently, I've also noticed large multi-nationals specifically looking for technology staff with PR/SC. However I'm not sure if my observations translate into a trend or I just saw a couple of random examples.

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Re: Job searching while still in Canada. Thoughts?

Postby bold_brave_spirit » Fri, 20 Oct 2017 12:33 pm

Thanks for the recent responses - also to brian_singapore - I'm glad we're aligned cause I was starting to wonder if there was something about my experience that was off. When you get a better hit rate in your home country than in Singapore - you kinda have to wonder. Your feedback makes total sense and is reassuring.

I'll keep my campaign going when I get to Singapore end of November and see how it goes. I'm optimistic that things will change when I'm physically there and when recruiters can quickly get a hold of me for a call or face to face conversation.

Cheers!


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