Your Complete Guide to Securing Employment as a Foreigner in Singapore

Securing Employment as a Foreigner
Securing Employment as a Foreigner

You’ve heard about the wonders of Singapore, you know about the attractive tax policies, you’ve even seen the beautiful pictures. Now you’re thinking you’d like to work in Singapore and probably wondering how to go about doing that right? Well, Singapore is a fantastic destination for foreigners to work in, but getting a job is not as easy as it seems especially for foreigners. It requires that you put in a lot of effort just to secure that.


Does Singapore have a high demand for foreign talent? Yes. But most companies have a high demand for specific skills. Added to that, the amount of competition from locals, not to mention foreigners, already living in Singapore is quite high. So, yes, you’ll need to put in a lot of effort.


It is almost always a harrowing experience to get a job. Getting an employment in a different country is even more challenging. You not only have to contend with actually getting the job, but you also have to deal with getting a work visa, handle all the accompanying paperwork and still deal with moving your life halfway across the globe. It will always be hard to work far away from home, granted! If you’re ever going to make a move like that, then Singapore is the place to go.


Seven Ways to Make Getting a Job as a Foreigner in Singapore Easy


A lot of the listings on online job sites/boards for Singapore mostly show job posting stating that only Singaporeans or Permanent Residents should apply. The listings for jobs for foreigners are usually far and few between. Despite all that, the tips suggested below are sure to make it that much easier for you to locate a job.

Check to Make Sure You’re Eligible to Work in Singapore


Before you go out to start job hunting, you need to identify the requirements needed for foreigners to work in Singapore. Several different work permits and passes are available in Singapore. So, you’ll need to know which you qualify for. You can check how eligible you are using the smart assessment tool available on


You should note that while the test will tell you your eligibility status, it is, however, not an entirely accurate reflection of your ability mostly because personal background and quotas are not considered by the self-assessment tool.

Just like when you’re looking for a job in your home country, it is also required that you have the needed experience and qualifications. Before applying for a work permit, you must have gotten a job, and your expected starter salary must exceed or meet the minimum wage.

Understand How Your Perspective Job Sector Operates in Singapore


Finding employment in Singapore requires a lot of little steps before you can finally get to that final destination. One of such little steps is to analyze your potential job sector and understand how it works in Singapore. Some chosen career paths will make it easier to find jobs compared to others. So, getting a job depends on your chosen career path. Certain career paths are on an incline while for others, they’ve reached a point of stagnation.


With the newly opened luxury resorts and major tourist attractions, tourism in Singapore is booming. Another popular job sector is in the computer sciences. Singapore has a small but escalating game development field.

Your best option for securing a job is to apply for a profession listed on the Strategic and Skills-in-Demand List. The list tells of the skill-sets and occupation that will be high in demand by industries in Singapore in the nearest future. With the proper amount of research, you’ll be able to improve your prospects of employment.

Go Out to Look for the Job


Several job hunting websites can help you secure a job. These websites are a convenient way of connecting with potential employers and locating employment opportunities. Additionally, you can use the classic method of taking a pen to the newspaper and going through the paper for classified job adverts.

Other avenues that are worth considering are headhunters and recruitment agencies. They can be costly but usually have a high placement rate. Finally, don’t forget your connections (family, friends, and colleagues). Online networking sites such as LinkedIn and referrals also make a significant difference.

Prepare Yourself

After applying for the job or jobs, there is usually a waiting process that can leave the nerves frayed. If you’ve been shortlisted for the job, you’ll be contacted. Instead of going out to start celebrating, you’ll want to prepare for your interview.


You need to prepare for the interview carefully. You may not meet the interviewer personally. It may be through a phone or video call. So you’ll need to articulate your professionalism, show off your English skills, convey a diverse and open attitude and showcase your excellent qualifications.


If you’re yet to be contacted, don’t panic, it’ll happen. Instead, use the time to update your resume, cover letter, and other job search materials to be of the highest possible quality.

On Receiving The Job Offer

Once you’re offered a job contract, you usually have 3 – 5 days to analyze the paperwork and make a decision on whether you’re taking the job. Make sure that your salary conforms to all that is required in your intended work permit.

Requirements for Specialized Professions

Certain jobs in Singapore have been tagged as specialized occupations. Such jobs require registration with the government and details of your pay grade and employment sector. The professions are governed by all types of local regulations, and all registered individuals must comply with the rules. Examples of such job include engineering, land surveying, dentistry, medicine, nursing, pharmaceuticals, and law.

Apply for a Work Visa – Employment

If you chose to accept the job offer and you’ve completed all the paperwork, the next thing you want to do is apply for a work visa depending on your qualifications.

While it may be hard to secure a job, foreign professionals are warmly welcomed in Singapore, and as such, it should not be difficult for you to apply for a wok permit.

You’ll be required to pay a non-negotiable, non-refundable fee for registration to be able to submit your application. It may need five weeks give or take a week to process if you applied manually, but only seven working days if you apply online. Carry out a thorough research to find out the different types of work visas handed out in Singapore and start planning.

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