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Current EP Situation

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Current EP Situation

Post by Global Player » Sun, 13 Feb 2022 11:03 pm

Hi all,

I'm wondering if any company in Singapore currently is processing EP's for foreign hires. Means, not an internal company transfer from overseas to Singapore, but a new candidate applying from overseas for an advertised role and the company goes through the EP process for the candidate.

Did this actually happen to anyone on this forum lately?

Just would like to get a feeling if it makes sense to apply for jobs in Singapore right now or it's a waste of time.

I'm talking about technology jobs, if this makes a difference.

Thanks

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 14 Feb 2022 12:14 am

Yeah, it makes a difference. 10% of all Employment Passes have been removed from Singapore in the past one year. Unless you are on an internal transfer, unless you have extremely deep pockets and can figure out how to stay here for more than 90 days it not likely to happen. (EP, S & WP) Go to MOM.gov.sg for more info on the different passes and requirements for same, but seriously, you are asking for a pipe dream unless you are a rocket scientist or a Neurosurgeon.
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by malcontent » Mon, 14 Feb 2022 12:41 am

If you are talking about high flyers being brought in on full expat packages… I met a guy last week in our office who just arrived and fits that category. His EP would have been approved almost instantly. The company will be paying 5 figures monthly just for his rental, utilities included and he will only pay 15% of the cost of a new car, kids school - completely covered, paid annual home leave for the whole family plus a monthly posting allowance (last I heard it’s $3,800/mo) to cover differential in cost of living. Yes, these types of packages still exist at the major multinationals. When you see how much the company pays for these guys, it really makes you feel like cheap labor!
Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it - Niels Bohr

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by nelyanne » Mon, 14 Feb 2022 10:15 am

I came to Singapore as an internal transfer, and switched to another company last year. It's hard, but still possible. People are still coming to Singapore. Tech companies are struggling to finding proper candidates. It all depends on your profile and skills - are you able to fill the niche that the locals cannot fill? You can always try, but keep your expectations low.

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by Global Player » Mon, 14 Feb 2022 5:21 pm

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

This is also my impression so far. Pre pandemic I never had issues to land at least some interviews in Singapore - but currently zero reply. Hence my question if companies even go for new EPs nowadays. Some openly announced they don't hire overseas candidates due to the travel restrictions (e.g. Google, Visa).

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by jwoods1864 » Mon, 14 Feb 2022 5:31 pm

Global Player wrote:Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

This is also my impression so far. Pre pandemic I never had issues to land at least some interviews in Singapore - but currently zero reply. Hence my question if companies even go for new EPs nowadays. Some openly announced they don't hire overseas candidates due to the travel restrictions (e.g. Google, Visa).
Things aren’t looking great I must say. Does anyone think there will be any improvements by year end/next year?

I am hoping to return then (teaching in SG 2017-21) but absolutely not optimistic. My girlfriend is a PR so if we were married I could come in on STVP and then apply for LTVP and get right to work that way?
It isn’t ideal haha. Should I mention in interviews/applications about being able to get Right to work etc or what’s the best way to approach that aspect?


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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by Global Player » Tue, 15 Feb 2022 11:58 am

What I don't get is that there are open jobs like crazy if you look at the job boards of MNC's and filter for Singapore. E.g. Microsoft and Dell have 120+ open jobs, Singtel, Citibank, DBS more than 500 posted jobs - it looks there is a lot of demand for candidates.

I understand and support the Singaporeans first approach. But I doubt all roles can be filled by local candidates. I'm wondering what is the key cause that companies don't go for overseas candidates? Are the recruiters reluctant to put in the effort or is it really the government what makes it difficult for companies to get EP's approved? So that it even doesn't make sense for recruiters to put in the effort to hire a foreigner.

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by the observer » Tue, 15 Feb 2022 12:13 pm

Some aren’t real postings, especially as candidates have already been found.

The job board is to fulfill requirements that it has attracted their fair share of local applicants.

A few has been caught and fined, but that’s just tip of the iceberg. No whistle blowing, no issues.

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by nelyanne » Tue, 15 Feb 2022 1:15 pm

Global Player wrote:
Tue, 15 Feb 2022 11:58 am
What I don't get is that there are open jobs like crazy if you look at the job boards of MNC's and filter for Singapore. E.g. Microsoft and Dell have 120+ open jobs, Singtel, Citibank, DBS more than 500 posted jobs - it looks there is a lot of demand for candidates.

I understand and support the Singaporeans first approach. But I doubt all roles can be filled by local candidates. I'm wondering what is the key cause that companies don't go for overseas candidates? Are the recruiters reluctant to put in the effort or is it really the government what makes it difficult for companies to get EP's approved? So that it even doesn't make sense for recruiters to put in the effort to hire a foreigner.
As the observer mentioned, most of those postings are for 'internal transfers in disguise'. They may even invite you for the interview, and reject just afterwards without any good reason.

Regarding the banks, it is super hard to get a response if you are applying on your own, not through the agency, without a referral.

I had better luck when I was applying to the local companies that cannot just bring in their employees from other countries.

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by malcontent » Tue, 15 Feb 2022 6:58 pm

We often post both internal and external, even if we have an internal candidate in mind. The reason is to keep tabs on the talent pool available externally and keep choice candidates in mind for other jobs that open up. This is why it’s good idea to keep applying for other positions even if you’re not selected after an interview. The fact that you’ve been interviewed already means you’ve been shortlisted from dozens of candidates, so you can’t take it as a rejection. That said, we know that for local positions, getting an EP approved is not easy at the moment and you’d have to be pretty exceptional to warrant an attempt.
Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it - Niels Bohr

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by the observer » Tue, 15 Feb 2022 9:01 pm

malcontent wrote:
Tue, 15 Feb 2022 6:58 pm
We often post both internal and external, even if we have an internal candidate in mind. The reason is to keep tabs on the talent pool available externally and keep choice candidates in mind for other jobs that open up.
:-k

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by malcontent » Tue, 15 Feb 2022 9:44 pm

the observer wrote:
Tue, 15 Feb 2022 9:01 pm
malcontent wrote:
Tue, 15 Feb 2022 6:58 pm
We often post both internal and external, even if we have an internal candidate in mind. The reason is to keep tabs on the talent pool available externally and keep choice candidates in mind for other jobs that open up.
:-k
I know, right? But this is the direction given from our leadership.

In the US they take it even further - you can’t fill a job without posting it, and you can’t post a job without posting it externally (unless you get a high level leadership exception), and you must at least interview three candidates, one must be external!
Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it - Niels Bohr

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by Global Player » Wed, 16 Feb 2022 11:05 am

malcontent wrote:
Tue, 15 Feb 2022 9:44 pm
In the US they take it even further - you can’t fill a job without posting it, and you can’t post a job without posting it externally
Same at my previous company - we had to posts jobs externally for every role, even we already had internal candidates for it.

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by Global Player » Wed, 16 Feb 2022 11:09 am

nelyanne wrote:
Tue, 15 Feb 2022 1:15 pm
As the observer mentioned, most of those postings are for 'internal transfers in disguise'. They may even invite you for the interview, and reject just afterwards without any good reason.
Pre pandemic I had interviews with Citibank for 2 different jobs. The interviews went exceptionally well but I got rejected - as you said without any obvious reasons. Probably it was something like a smokescreen interview but they decided already for an internal candidate.

I also had interviews with 2 other big banks and suddenly during the process the recruiter ghosts you, means no rejection and not any reply to follow up questions from my side. I expect such behavior maybe from small local companies but not from banks with 50k+ employees.

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Re: Current EP Situation

Post by Global Player » Wed, 16 Feb 2022 11:17 am

nelyanne wrote:
Tue, 15 Feb 2022 1:15 pm
Regarding the banks, it is super hard to get a response if you are applying on your own, not through the agency, without a referral.
Recruitment agencies and foreign candidates don't get along well. Even pre pandemic I had the impression that every agency approach got ignored when you are a foreigner. A recruiter informally told me that most of the companies approach them for local candidates as big companies easily can get foreigners by themselves - they don't need an agency for it.

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