How to Land a Job at a Big Company in Singapore

Want to work at a big company in Singapore like Google, Facebook, DBS, or Accenture? Look no further than our guide on how to land a job in one of the top big companies in Singapore!
How to land a job at a big company in Singapore

Singapore boasts over 400,000 registered businesses. Only a handful of those businesses are major enterprises. Potential employees and staff are getting competitive about getting hired by them. Working at a big company in Singapore is an attractive prospect. Singapore has become a highly competitive and very popular place for international business operations as well as local companies. If you want to get involved in tech, finance, or consulting, Singapore is starting to look like the new hotspot on a global level.

Luckily, there is hope. Even if you don’t have a perfect resume or CV, you can absolutely land a big company job in Singapore. All it takes is a little know-how about job hunting in Singapore and understanding what key companies are looking for in an employee in different sectors.

Are you interested in applying for a job at a big company in Singapore? We can help you get there. In this guide, we’ll break down what the biggest Singapore businesses are, the skills you’ll need to work at a big company, and some common strategies for getting that coveted interview.

What are the benefits of working at a big company in Singapore?

Working for a big company in Singapore has quite a few benefits. To start, Singapore ranks strong as the second most globalized economy in the world. That means that there is virtually endless opportunity for employment. You’ll also find that salaries in Singapore of often very lucrative and the personal tax system there is very progressive. Singapore is also known for making it very easy to get a work or residence permit if you are not a native Singaporean citizen.

When it comes to big companies, in particular, there are a number of different benefits to working at Google instead of, say, a startup or SME. Working at a larger company will almost always guarantee better pay (up to 50 to 60% more than a startup), stable employment, and predictable work. At small companies, it is almost never guaranteed that a small business will thrive.

Big companies, on the other hand, have enterprise-level funding that keeps them at the top. This offers job security that you simply won’t find anywhere else. A big company will often be more demanding, but the job security and salary are well worth it. The experience you can gain at a big tech, finance, or consulting company is extremely valuable as well.

What are the top big companies in Singapore in 2021?

The current big businesses in Singapore for 2021 include the following:

  • Google
  • Facebook
  • DBS Bank (A.k.a. The Development Bank of Singapore)
  • Amazon
  • Accenture
  • Shopee
  • Apple
  • Microsoft
  • Netflix
  • UBS (A.k.A. UBS Investment Bank)
  • JP Morgan
  • PwC (A.k.A. Price Waterhouse Coopers Singapore)
  • Deloitte
  • HSBC (A.k.A. The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Singapore)
  • P&G (A.k.A. Procter & Gamble Singapore)
  • HP Inc. (A.k.A. Hewlett Packard Singapore)
  • Hubspot
  • AIA (A.k.A. American International Assurance Singapore)
  • Visa Inc.
  • Shell

What are the common skills needed to work at a big company?

Depending on the industry and individual business you want to be a part of, your unique skillset will likely vary. However, there are a handful of commonly mentioned skills you should have when applying to a big company. Those skills include:

  • Time management
  • Leadership
  • Team-building
  • Critical thinking
  • Analytical
  • Data management
  • Negotiation
  • Entrepreneurial
  • Problem-solving
  • Sales and marketing
  • Financial management
  • Commercial awareness
  • Communication (especially when it comes to managing a team)
  • Foreign language (especially English, Mandarin, Malay, and Tamil)
  • Computer programming (in some capacity)
  • Prototyping and production
  • Development skills such as UI, graphic, and web design
  • Technical skills such as Java, C++, SQL, and Agile methodologies
  • Data science skills such as project management, data analysis, and machine learning

Which of these big companies would you want to work for?
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What are the common strategies for landing a job at a big company in Singapore?

Tech, consulting, and financial institutions are three of the biggest industries that are booming (and hiring) in Singapore today.

Tech Industry

A few major tech industry leaders in Singapore include Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Shopee.

In addition to having solid coding skills, it will also help to have decent soft skills too. That means communication skills, team building skills, etc. Your ability to communicate effectively will make for an excellent first impression. If you’ve worked on a number of group projects, be sure to highlight those in your CV.

Regardless of whether or not you have a friend on the inside, you should focus primarily on your coding ability and ability to multitask. Facebook wants developers that understand coding and algorithms, but they also want someone who can multitask very complex projects efficiently. Do your homework beforehand and be as prepared as possible when it comes to the interview. It’ll help to look up and finding Facebook interview transcripts to study on beforehand.

Preferably, many recruiters will say that they look for three or more years of professional software development experience and a Bachelor’s degree at a minimum. A degree isn’t always needed, though. If you have a hefty portfolio and tons of experience, you’ll have a decent chance too.

Finance/Banking Industry

A few major finance and banking industry leaders in Singapore include DBS, HSBC, and JP Morgan. First, understand that the finance sector is a competitive industry. Take your time and study up on interview questions online. HSBC has an extensive interview process that begins with two online assessments, then a phone interview, then a “Super Day” in which prospects are brought into a group problem solving scenario. You’ll also need to prepare for psychometric tests, as well as tests about your experience in commercial banking. Typically, Wall Street businesses want to find new college graduates with excellent grades and a good GMAT score. Just as well, recruiters and management tend to look for bankers with applicable work experience. Also be sure to note your analytical skills in your CV. Honesty is key here– many interviewers know that you’re fresh out of school and have little experience when it comes to banking. You’ve got the education, but you’ll still need training regardless of how talented you are. Overall, just be sure to tell them exactly why you want to work for JP Morgan and not another financial institution and express your desire to be a valuable team member. In a guide to applying to a financial industry job in Singapore for eFinancial Careers, Simon Mortlock noted how important it is to do your research before going into an interview with a major Singaporean bank, even if you think you’ve already got them figured out. “Do more homework. The local banks are dominant and highly visible here, but how much do you know about their strategies and nuanced differences? Also consider the potential pain points the hiring manager is facing, and ways you can help address them.” – Mortlock.

Consulting Industry

A few major consulting industry leaders in Singapore include Deloitte, McKinsey, and Accenture.

It’s mostly a matter of patience and having some good contacts. This company is a huge one and receives over 500,000 applications each and every year. Only the best of the best get in, but that doesn’t meant here isn’t any hope. The firm itself will use a number of methods to find the best possible prospects, and one of those methods is to look at referrals from existing employees. It’s estimated that 30% of the company’s annual hires come from referrals. Take the time to look through your contacts and if you aren’t networking already, be sure to start now!

Networking is a very helpful skill to acquire too. “The front door application is easy and stress-free,” the guide reads, “But if you really want results, you need to get creative with finding alternate entry paths. That means reaching out to old contacts, family friends, even our older neighbours. […] We all have amazing contacts in high places. People who can get us to our goals faster. Why aren’t we using them?”

Conclusion

When it comes down to it, all it really takes to get hired at a big company in Singapore is some skill, good networking skills, and dedication. It never hurts to apply for a job at a big company, even if you feel you are overwhelmingly underqualified. The strategy you should use is basically this– Remember that most big companies are more interested in your soft skills and portfolio of work, rather than a hard list of job description skills. Showcase what makes you unique. We also recommend looking into getting a work visa or pass, such as Tech.Pass, to get a good start in Singapore.

In an interview for Fast Company, Paul McDonald, the senior executive at Robert Half, noted that statistics show that many people have a better fighting chance at making it to the interview process at a big company than they think.

When you’re ready to start your company research and sending in those CVs, try using GrabJobs. You can use our platform to your their applications to big companies efficient and effective. GrabJobs allows jobseekers to search for companies with ease and see if they are currently hiring. Finding a killer job in Singapore with a big enterprise has never been easier.

How was our guide to landing a job at a big company in Singapore? Tell us which tip helped you the most in the comments below.

Valentin Berard

COO at GrabJobs. Valentin leads strategic and operational activities regionally. Background in Business Development and Recruitment. Passionate about social innovation, he constantly strives to find solutions to real-world problems through harnessing smart technology. Read more: https://www.linkedin.com/in/valeberard/