The healthcare industry in Singapore is resilient and booming. With one of the fastest graying populations globally and a growing focus on preventive care, there is a high demand for healthcare professionals of all levels. This is great news for job seekers, as there are many exciting healthcare jobs in Singapore. Singapore is a renowned medical hub in the region as well.
In this article, we will cover 5 useful tips for individuals who are looking to relocate for better job opportunities.
Tip #1 – Employment Pass Application
You will need a work visa if you want to work in Singapore, otherwise it would be deemed as illegal. There are different types of work visa available in Singapore, depending on your skills, qualifications and criterias. The most common types of work visas for foreign professionals are Employment Pass (EP), Personalized Employment Pass (PEP) and S Pass.
In order to apply for a work visa in Singapore, you will first need to submit an employment pass application to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) after receiving a job offer from the hiring company. The MOM will then assess your application and this process can take up to 14 working days. If your application is approved, you will then be issued a work visa. Your work visa will be valid for the entire duration of your employment contract.
In April 2023, the Ministry of Manpower announced the shortage occupation list, which includes 5 Singapore healthcare jobs that will be given bonus points for employment pass application. E.g., Registered nurse, Physiotherapist, Occupational therapist, Diagnostic radiographer and Clinical psychologist.
Tip #2 – Escalating Housing Rental Cost
There has been a shortage of housing in Singapore in the past 3 years due to COVID-19. This caused disruptions to the construction industry due to a lack of foreign labor, leading to delays in the completion of housing projects. Moreover the pandemic has caused an increased demand for housing, as more people globally are looking to relocate to Singapore for work or to escape the pandemic in their home countries.
It's important that before you sign the offer letter, you should consider the cost of living in Singapore first. As of the time of writing, a typical room rental can easily cost between SGD $900 - $2,000 per month. Whereas a 2-bedroom apartment can easily range between SGD $3,500 - $7,000 per month. Tenants need to provide up to 2 months’ worth of security deposit and 1 month of forward rent in most cases. As a rule of thumb, your monthly housing rental / mortgage cost should not exceed 30% of your gross monthly wages.
Most locations in Singapore can be commuted within 50 mins. If your budget permits, you can easily find housing near your workplace. Singapore housing consisted predominantly of high raised buildings.
Tip #3 – Work Life Balance
Singapore has a fast-paced culture and is known for being very work-oriented. In a recent survey conducted by Randstad Singapore, the result shows 41 percent of the Singapore based participants being interested to pursue a role that offers them a better work-life balance.
There are many factors that have contributed to this lack of work-life balance in Singapore e.g. long working hours, unofficial 6 working days per week for certain industries/ jobs, and competitive nature of their workplace. In order to succeed in Singapore, employees often feel like they need to work long hours and put in extra effort. Which can result in burnout and stress.
It’s important to note that taking your evenings and weekends to learn or go for training courses is as good as working overtime. Healthcare jobs in Singapore can also mean long working hours, due to their current shortage of healthcare staff.
Tip #4 – Lack of Support Network
Singapore work culture has a practice of co-workers not spending time together after work. This got to do with a culture of minding your own business and being result-oriented. That said, for foreigners who wish to relocate to Singapore, it’s important for them to establish their social circle. Relocation can be a very isolating experience and a support network can help you to feel more connected to the community and to make friends.
A support network can also help you with practical matters, such as finding a place to live, getting around, and understanding the local culture. They can also help you to navigate any issues you may encounter and find the resources that you need.
They can be there to listen to your vent, to offer you guidance, and to help you to problem-solve. Common places for developing social networks include churches, volunteer groups, interest-based events, etc.
Tip #5 – High Cost of Living
According to a Numbeo report, a family of 4 living in Singapore would have an estimated expenses of SGD $5,616 every month excluding rent. Whereas a single person's estimated expenses is SGD $1,555 every month excluding rent. Singapore is 14.5% less expensive than New York on average. According to an EIU report on Dec 2022, Singapore is ranked as the world's most expensive cities, alongside New York.
Here are some helpful tips for reducing your cost of living in Singapore as a foreigner. You can consider co-living in a shared apartment with other foreigners if you are on a budget. This will help you to lower your rental costs.
Public transportation is a convenient and cost effective way to get around Singapore. It is much cheaper than owning a car. A typical saloon car in Singapore including COE (certificate of entitlement) can easily set you back by SGD $150,000.
In a nutshell, Singapore offers an attractive place for people who want to pursue Singapore healthcare jobs. With its world class infrastructure, safety, convenience and being a business hub for international firms, you can certainly enjoy your life here while pursuing your dream career.
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If you are looking for healthcare jobs in Singapore, check out our career portal.