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    May 09, 2014

    The firms we most want to work for

    ARMED with an accounting degree, fresh graduate Galen Lee began his job hunt with his sights set on two things: a good salary and opportunities to develop his career.

    The 24-year-old Singapore Management University alumnus told My Paper he wanted his prospective employer to offer him a job that can "add value" to his professional growth, such as by enabling him to develop specialist skill sets or expertise.

    "This would mean that I'll be equipped with whatever I need to move forward in my career after, say, five years, and even be sought after by other companies."

    At the same time, he also sought a "comfortable" salary in order to save for the future.

    Mr Lee has already found a job. Like many other job seekers, he sought the qualities of some of Singapore's most attractive employers, which includes flag carrier Singapore Airlines (SIA).

    The organisation, known as a global leader in the aviation industry today, offers employees the opportunity to work across different divisions and functional areas, including overseas postings such as those of station managers or country general managers.

    SIA's senior vice-president of human resources, Christopher Cheng, said that, on top of competitive salary and benefit packages that come with travel privileges, staff undergo comprehensive training and have career advancement opportunities that "help them develop their potential to the fullest".

    The result? The staff have better work ethics and many stay with the airline for up to 40 years.

    For its value as an employer, SIA was crowned the Most Attractive Employer for the third year running at the Randstad Awards last month. It was also recognised for offering interesting job content and a pleasant working atmosphere.

    The annual event, organised by global human resources services company Randstad, honours the organisations Singaporeans most want to work for, across 75 of the largest companies here.

    Randstad country director Michael Smith noted that the winners, including runners-up Shell and Changi Airport Group, have built their appeal on a strong employer brand.

    "This is crucial, especially in Singapore's tight labour market, as companies compete to attract and retain the best talent," he added.

    "And they invest in their employer brand because they understand great people are the one thing they can't succeed without."

    For Marina Bay Sands, which won the Most Attractive Employer Award in the Hospitality and Recreation Services Sector, keeping its over 900-strong staff motivated is key.

    They enjoy perks such as complimentary meals from two 24-hour buffet-style dining rooms, where daily menu changes are de rigueur.

    Deutsche Bank, which took home the Most Attractive Employer Award in the Banking and Financial Services Sector, prides itself on its open and diverse culture.

    Gender diversity, for instance, is a critical component of its hiring strategy, said a spokesman. Its overall female representation at the director level in the Asia-Pacific has increased by 6 per cent over the last five years.