Adopting a holistic approach to job satisfaction beyond remuneration

Chew Siew Mee, Managing Director of JobStreet by SEEK, highlights what employers need to offer to encourage talent to join, and stay with their firms.
By: | January 4, 2023

To win the talent war, it is imperative that organisations evaluate their current benefits package to determine if they appeal to current job seekers. As part of efforts to stay competitive, employers must also be able to identify the right candidates quickly through an efficient and effective recruitment process.

In a candidate-short market like Singapore, where the availability of jobs outnumbers jobseekers, organisations are facing more challenges in attracting and retaining the best talent, said Chew Siew Mee, Managing Director of JobStreet by SEEK.

She told HRM Asia, “The pandemic has greatly reshaped the job preferences of candidates and to keep up with the pace of change, more employers need to discover the needs of candidates so that they can better attract and retain talents.”

“Unlike the good old days, candidates today are taking a more holistic approach. In addition to looking for a competitive salary, they are also prioritising better work-life balance, flexibility, and career progression.”

“In addition to looking for a competitive salary, [job candidates] are also prioritising better work-life balance, flexibility, and career progression.” – Chew Siew Mee, Managing Director of JobStreet by SEEK


According to JobStreet’s 2022-2023 Outlook | Hiring, Compensation & Benefits report, 76% of organisations increased the salary of at least one employee in the last 12 months, as Chew highlighted, “When it comes to salary adjustments, on average organisations have increased salaries by 5-10% across all job levels. On top of salaries, other financial incentives include bonus payout, medical insurance, and dental coverage.”

Work-life balance is another key concern for candidates today, in addition to annual leave. Hence, more organisations are providing flexible working hours and introducing employee engagement programmes in the workplace.

The implementation of hybrid working arrangements has also gained momentum and flexibility has become the new way of work. According to JobStreet’s report, eight out of 10 organisations provide remote working support in the form of offering laptops for employees, virtual meeting support, and flexible working hours.

Because of the pandemic’s impact on mental health and burnout, Chew has also observed some emerging trends in the workplace. For instance, organisations are increasingly providing mental health counselling and mental health off days to employees.

She also expects hybrid and flexible modes of working to continue gaining momentum in 2023, with JobStreet’s report finding one-third of companies already practising a hybrid mode of working. And in a digitally advanced world, flexibility has become an expectation for candidates. As such, employees expect flexible working hours and flexible working days, and more organisations are also looking at providing an allowance for employees to set up their home workspace, Chew noted.

“Last but not least, career progression remains key for candidates today,” she added. “In view of digitalisation, upskilling and reskilling are essential to remain competitive. To win the war for talent, organisations are encouraged to embrace and implement competitive compensation and benefits.”

It is, however, important to apply the right approach to every candidate when attracting and retaining them since different segments of candidates have different work preferences. As part of its commitment to supporting hirers, JobStreet provides actionable insights that enable them to make better-informed hiring decisions, including adding gig employees to their workforce.

The rise of the gig economy

In Singapore, the government has taken steps to encourage the growth of the gig economy, including introducing regulations that protect workers and clarifying the rights and responsibilities of employers and gig workers.

According to Chew the gig economy has been gaining popularity in Singapore due to the flexibility gig work offers, while the pandemic has shed light on the importance of gig economy workers and their contribution to the economy.

She said, “Given the rise of digital natives, short-term gig jobs provide candidates with the flexibility they are looking for, as long as they have the relevant tools and technology to do their work. For organisations, providing gig roles may allow them to be nimbler in scaling their business and growth based on the demand and supply of the market.”

“Since there is an obvious upside for organisations to hire gig workers, even with this change, employers will continue to tap on gig workers. Especially in a candidate-short market like Singapore, gig workers will be an alternative source of talent.”