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Confused re. career search - all advice much appreciated!

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ak1978
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Confused re. career search - all advice much appreciated!

Postby ak1978 » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 6:36 pm

Hello everyone,

This is my first post on Singapore Expats so please forgive me if I'm asking questions which have been asked before...I have used the search function to look up the answers I need, but there is almost too much information and so many different visas that I'm now confused! Would really appreciate your help on the below:

My partner and I are based in the UK but are very keen to move to Singapore to further our careers in public relations. My partner has eight years experience and is a senior account director and I have four years experience. We are very keen to secure jobs before we take the plunge and move to the country - and as such, have been sending our resumes to various companies in the area. A few employers have responded and expressed interest in us, but have said that they'd prefer us to actually move out to Singapore before they can formally offer us a job.

Can anyone advise on whether this is a common requirement for employers in Singapore? We're obviously extremely keen to move asap, but we're slightly concerned about giving up our jobs in the UK only to find ourselves stuck without employment in Singapore.

Has anyone else had any experience of finding public relations jobs recently in Singapore?

Finally, I have a question about employment passes. If we do decide to move to Singapore without a job, would I have to find a job before being able to apply for an employment pass? I have seen the self assessment tool on the Ministry of Manpower website which asks about "employment details to be performed" and the salary achieved etc, so I assume we would have to find a job out in Singapore before working out whether we're even eligible to get an employment pass.

Any words of wisdom of these topics would be most appreciated.

Thank you all very much in advance

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Re: Confused re. career search - all advice much appreciated

Postby sundaymorningstaple » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 7:00 pm

ak1978 wrote:Hello everyone,

This is my first post on Singapore Expats so please forgive me if I'm asking questions which have been asked before...I have used the search function to look up the answers I need, but there is almost too much information and so many different visas that I'm now confused! Would really appreciate your help on the below:

My partner and I are based in the UK but are very keen to move to Singapore to further our careers in public relations. My partner has eight years experience and is a senior account director and I have four years experience. We are very keen to secure jobs before we take the plunge and move to the country - and as such, have been sending our resumes to various companies in the area. A few employers have responded and expressed interest in us, but have said that they'd prefer us to actually move out to Singapore before they can formally offer us a job.

Can anyone advise on whether this is a common requirement for employers in Singapore? We're obviously extremely keen to move asap, but we're slightly concerned about giving up our jobs in the UK only to find ourselves stuck without employment in Singapore.


Most likely, these are cheap outfits or big outfits who are known for their cheapness. They would rather you already be here so they don't have to pay for moving expenses and possibly want to hire you on local terms. Not a good deal and if you are worth your salt, then it shouldn't be necessary, especially with the communications links available in the world today. Don't give up your day job until you have a contract offer in your hands.



Has anyone else had any experience of finding public relations jobs recently in Singapore?

Finally, I have a question about employment passes. If we do decide to move to Singapore without a job, would I have to find a job before being able to apply for an employment pass? I have seen the self assessment tool on the Ministry of Manpower website which asks about "employment details to be performed" and the salary achieved etc, so I assume we would have to find a job out in Singapore before working out whether we're even eligible to get an employment pass.

The self assessment tool is only to tell you whether or not you are qualified academically. It is not a guarantee of getting an employment pass. And, yes, you are right, you need to have a job before you can get an employment pass. In fact, you cannot apply for your pass. This is done by your employer and both parties have to be vetted. You might be qualified but the employer might be trying to hire a foreigner when there are sufficient local around who are qualified to do the job as well. This will get the application rejected and while an appeal is available, unless there is a substantial "marketing" change that will convince MOM to rethink. Not easy.

Any words of wisdom of these topics would be most appreciated.

Thank you all very much in advance

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Postby ak1978 » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 8:06 pm

This is very useful, thank you.

It would be very useful to know about other people's experiences of finding jobs at the moment (particularly in public relations if at all possible).

Would be good to know if it's worth continuing to try or if other people have just reached a dead end. I'm sure there are lots of very qualified Singaporeans, so look forward to hearing people's thoughts on this.

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Postby ak1978 » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 8:48 pm

Hello - sorry to post again but I'd also like to ask about the value of getting on the books of recruitment consultants in Singapore. I'd imagine that they'd try and get Singaporeans on their books first and foremost, but do you think it's worth getting in touch with some of them?

Thank you,

Annabel

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Postby Strong Eagle » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 9:12 pm

ak1978 wrote:Hello - sorry to post again but I'd also like to ask about the value of getting on the books of recruitment consultants in Singapore. I'd imagine that they'd try and get Singaporeans on their books first and foremost, but do you think it's worth getting in touch with some of them?

Thank you,

Annabel


It probably won't hurt but it probably won't help, either. As an experiment, drop into monster and jobsdb, Singapore boards. Look up your jobs of choice. Hundreds, no doubt, with 98 percent or more of them listed by agencies.

Then, step back. Unemployment is high in Singapore. Times are tough. But, looking at the number of job listings one could only conclude that things are absolutely gang busters.

Only conclusion: Fake jobs. If you do sign up and apply, it will be the rare response you get.

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Postby ak1978 » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 9:22 pm

Gosh - really? What would recruitment consultants stand to gain by posting fake jobs? An illusion of a successful economy?

I know "losing face" is an extremely important concept over there, but surely people would not create fake jobs to create an image of prosperity?

Thank you again

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 9:29 pm

After 14 years in that industry, I have to concur with SE as well. It doesn't hurt to put your CV in there, but keep a list of those that you send to and resend your CV every couple of months because the shelf life is only 3 months max. The headhunters here are, for the most part, worthless as they, like run of the mill recruiters, are primarily out for the quick buck and don't really shop for the job seeker as their clients are the companies so, the job seeker is, frankly, not much more the perishable fruit on the shelf (what I'm talking about - shelf life) At the moment, there has been a rather large backlash on the foreign workers here (one out of every 4 people on this island is a foreigner on a work pass of one sort or another. The job situation is still not rosy here and there are heaps of unemployed Singaporeans. Suffice it to say, this has caused a lot of hard feelings (even though the bulk of the foreign labourers are doing jobs that a Singapore won't do in the first place, but these people are rather simple minded at times so, with elections coming up within the next 12 months (sooner - probably 6 months I'm betting) Foreigners are being put on hold and reductions are happening as I type this. I lost two degreed technicians last month (3 weeks ago) when their S passes came up for renewal! So, as I said, don't quit your day job on spec. Bad move.

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Postby nakatago » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 9:36 pm

sundaymorningstaple wrote: but these people are rather simple minded at times so, with elections coming up within the next 12 months (sooner - probably 6 months I'm betting) .


what with that anyway? why are the elections on a non-determined date? is it part of scheme to maintain the status quo? or does the first part of the quote above answer that already? were they kept that way for more than four decades? :???: :???: :???:

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 9:39 pm

ak1978,

You have to understand how the recruitment industry works here in Asia. It's a lot different that in the west. Here, companies pay the recruitment fees. It's actually against the law to charge a Job Seeker any recruitment fees even if successful. In addition to that, client (companies) rarely will pay a retainer to an agency, instead, they email the JD out to a number of companies (usually all the majors here) and this ends up being a free-for-all with the company getting the CV on the HR manager's desk/PC first is the successful agency. This has produced what is known and the Shotgun method of recruitment. The hell with vetting the CV's first. If they are vaguely in the right ballpark they get sent in (possibly up to a dozen candidates at one go). They hope that at least one with result in an interview or at least further consideration. Speed is of the essence, because the average job seeker does a google and sends their CV to all they can find so it end up the client gets the same CV a couple of times (meanwhile, you haven't even been notified at this point - although you might get an email if your CV is over a month or two old to see if you are still available.)

Needless to say, recruiters & headhunters here have a rather bad name....

The fake jobs are to keep a fresh flow of new CV's coming in so they don't lose out to another agency because they advertised and got some newer ones that you have. :-|

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 9:50 pm

nakatago wrote:
sundaymorningstaple wrote: but these people are rather simple minded at times so, with elections coming up within the next 12 months (sooner - probably 6 months I'm betting) .


what with that anyway? why are the elections on a non-determined date? is it part of scheme to maintain the status quo? or does the first part of the quote above answer that already? were they kept that way for more than four decades? :???: :???: :???:


This way, they always manage to catch the opposition flat-footed! Usually, it means they are going to do something that will negatively impact all the citizens but in order to do that, they will give out some goodies first to sweeten the ground and then while all the public are in the throes of getting something for nothing (it never is) and are in a feelgood mood about the party in power, then they call for elections. It's not like the US where the date for elections are fixed. I believe it's the same in the UK, the calling of "snap" elections. Here they have to hold elections within 5 years but the actual date is not fixed.

Normally, shortly after the elections is when they jam whatever it was that's unpleasant, down the public's throat, but that way they have 4 or so years to let the public recuperate before they do it again. :wink:

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Postby nakatago » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 9:57 pm

when i wonder why the good people of this country put up with $#!+ like this, i remember that social engineering works wonders... :(

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my avdise

Postby Nyambura » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 10:49 pm

My advise is go ahead and do what europeans are loved for here and around the world.... Get off your butt and make a life anywhere you comfortably can make it. In this day and age where global citiziens are admired and sought after by potential multinationals , iam so suprised that people still assert-" times are tough everywhere" . Get over it.

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Re: my avdise

Postby sundaymorningstaple » Tue, 13 Apr 2010 11:10 pm

Nyambura wrote:Post subject: my avdise

Nyambura wrote:My advise is go ahead and do what europeans are loved for here and around the world.... Get off your butt and make a life anywhere you comfortably can make it. In this day and age where global citiziens are admired and sought after by potential multinationals , iam so suprised that people still assert-" times are tough everywhere" . Get over it.


I've only one thing to say......

....when you try tell others what they should do, be sure the Advice you give is correct. :roll:

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Postby adione » Wed, 14 Apr 2010 9:33 am

sundaymorningstaple wrote:You have to understand how the recruitment industry works here in Asia. It's a lot different that in the west. Here, companies pay the recruitment fees.


same as in Europe, the company pays the fees to headhunter
usually a percentage on the annual gross salary agreed to employee


sundaymorningstaple wrote:The fake jobs are to keep a fresh flow of new CV's coming in so they don't lose out to another agency because they advertised and got some newer ones that you have. :-|


same as in Europe, fake jobs just to harvest CVs and keep a big list of candidates.


Not all european countries have such bad "recruitment services", clearly it depends on the market.
My experience is about IT jobs: in Italy there're a lot of so called consultancy companies (it's pure body-rental, but this name doesn't sound cool) so the headhunters are just vampires of poor innocent souls...
Northern europe usually have a more professional and fair market situation, more often headhunters are real-headhunters and will provide good services both for companies and candidates.

Here in SG I'd say it's more Italian-style, at least for IT jobs;
I can understand that anyway, for lower-profile positions is more about saving money rather than productivity -- at least this is the not-supposed-to-be-like-that feeling I have had till nowadays...

:?

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Postby carteki » Wed, 14 Apr 2010 10:00 am

I had an awful experience with a so-called international recruitment agency. A job was posted on monster that I wasn't perfectly qualified for, but interested me. In the west I'd phone the recruiter and speak to them and ask them if it was worth spending time and effort tailoring my cv. The recruiter in SG REFUSED TO SPEAK TO ME. I was not worth her time. I have other agencies that I have met with and some of them are good and others not. Very different to the UK market.


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