Expert: Candidates are more realistic nowadays
Thanks to a slowing economy, job portals and placement firms are seeing more term contract jobs being offered today.
Ms Chew Siew Mee, country sales manager for JobStreet.com Singapore, says: "Contract staff are the ideal solution as businesses can make absolutely certain a position is needed before committing to a full-time head count."
She also said she has noticed an increase in the willingness of job seekers to take on these jobs.
"The benefits and pay for contract jobs these days are almost on par with permanent roles," says Ms Chew.
"Candidates are now more realistic and mentally prepared about the volatility of today's economic climate... Some contract positions even come with bonuses on project completion."
This is encouraging as it promotes competitiveness, she adds.
Ms Chew says: "Companies are emphasising on profits and competitiveness.
"Employees are consistently evaluated and candidates need to remain competitive to stay relevant.
"This is a start for more opportunities... Everyone is more responsive to market forces."
A spokesman for job placement agency Seacare Manpower says most of its 2,600 successful matches in the past two years are based on term contracts.
The agency is part of Seacare Co-operative, a labour co-operative set up by NTUC and the Singapore Organisation of Seamen.
The spokesman says: "Most job seekers in our pool are people waiting for full-time employment, but are willing to do contract-based jobs in the meantime."
He noticed housewives who want to work again prefer contract jobs.
"(They) are not sure if they are competent enough. So they are willing to try out contract-based jobs," he says.
He believes it is unlikely that contract staff will eclipse permanent staff in the near future.
"To achieve long-term productivity gain, employees need to be constantly upgraded and this can only be effective if they are engaged on a full-time basis and their career path is well-defined within the company," he says.