The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) has announced the results of the 1999 Infocomm Manpower & Skills Survey. This survey is the first joint manpower survey where the scope has been expan...
Singapore, 4 March 2000 | For Immediate Release
Strong Growth of 10-12% Projected for Infocomm Manpower Demand Over the Next Two Years
1 The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) has announced the results of the 1999 Infocomm Manpower & Skills Survey. This survey is the first joint manpower survey where the scope has been expanded to include Information and Communication Technology (ICT or Infocomm) manpower1. Prior to this, the former National Computer Board conducted a biennial IT Manpower & Skills Inventory Survey that focused on IT manpower. The 1999 survey projects strong demand for Infocomm manpower over the next two years, reflecting the corresponding growth in the Infocomm sector as Singapore moves towards a knowledge-based economy.
2 The 1999 Infocomm Manpower & Skills Survey was conducted for IDA by International Data Corporation (IDC). The survey was carried out in the 2nd half of 1999 and consisted of two questionnaires - an Organisation Survey, completed by the Chief Information Officers (CIOs) or equivalent, and an Infocomm Manpower Web-based Survey, completed by individual Infocomm Manpower. There were 580 organisations that participated in the Organisation Survey, while 1,021 infocomm manpower participated in the Web-based Infocomm Manpower survey.
Highlights of Findings
3 As at end of 1999, the number of infocomm manpower2 in Singapore was estimated to be 93,000, out of which 19% were involved in Networking. This is followed by Computer Operations/Technical Support (17%), Sales and Marketing (16%), Software Research and Development (13%) and Management (10%).
4 The infocomm manpower demand is projected to grow 10%-12% per year for the next two years. This implies that the total number of infocomm manpower in Singapore will reach 114,000 by the year 2001.
5 Amongst the different occupational categories of infocomm-related work, the category projected to reap the highest growth rate over the next two years is E-Commerce Development (47%). This is followed by Internet Development (24%) and Specialist Support Services (15%).
6 The overall turnover rate in 1998 for infocomm manpower employed in both the infocomm and non-infocomm industry sectors was 18%. The Infocomm industry The Infocomm industry3 comprises both Information Technology and Telecommunications companies. experienced a higher turnover rate of 25%, when compared to the 11% turnover experienced by the infocomm end-user industry The infocomm end-user industry4 refers to non-infocomm sector organisations that employ infocomm manpower.
Top Technical and Non-technical Skills
7 The Organisation Survey respondents were asked to identify the top five technical and non-technical skills possessed by their infocomm employees that were most essential for their core business. The top five critical technical skills identified were Internet Development, E-Commerce Development, Network Protocols/Topologies, Mobile/Wireless Communications and Multimedia/Video Development. In terms of non-technical skills, the top five critical skills identified by CIOs surveyed were Marketing/Sales, Customer Service, Interpersonal, Strategic Planning and Presentation.
Infocomm Training & Certification
8 The mean infocomm training expenditure for 1999 was estimated at $2,566 per Infocomm Manpower in all organisations. The overall infocomm training expenditure for Infocomm Manpower as a percentage of payroll was 1.8% in 1998 and is expected to increase to 2.2% in 1999. About 56% of the CIOs indicated that they are going to increase the training budget for the year 2000.
9 Classroom training was the most commonly used training method compared to computer-based training and web-based training in 1999. An interesting finding is that by 2001, the utilisation of web-based training and computer-based training is expected to overtake classroom training.
10 About half of the infocomm organisations that responded indicated their willingness to pay a premium for hiring certified professionals under the National IT Certification Programme5. This Certification Programme was launched in November 1998. Endorsed by the IDA and managed by the Singapore Computer Society, the programme aims to provide recognition for IT professionals with specific skills in Singapore.
Infocomm Manpower Career Issues
11 The survey also polled for respondents' views on a range of job-related factors such as career advancement and job responsibility. The respondents were asked to rate the level of importance of each job-related factor, as well as their current level of satisfaction with each factor.
12 In terms of importance on job-related factors, the factors that had the highest mean ratings were: Career Advancement, Salary, and Recognition from Management. In terms of satisfaction on job-related factors, the factors that had the highest mean ratings were: Co-worker Relationships, Relationship with Supervisor and Job Security.
13 The mismatch between importance and satisfaction was greatest on the following factors: Career Advancement, Salary, Recognition from Management, and Training Provided by Organisation.
14 The survey findings showed a high demand for Infocomm manpower in Singapore. Averaging about 10,000 per year, jobs in the area of E-Commerce Development will experience the highest growth rate and is also one of the top 5 skills that organisations sought after.
15 The survey also highlights the shift in the training delivery methods, where computer-based and web-based training will play a more important role in upgrading the skills of our infocomm manpower. In particular, the perceived gap in infocomm staff training needs to be noted because technology changes are so rapid today that technical knowledge can be made obsolete within 18 months. The key challenge faced by organisations is therefore how to keep training costs down and yet ensure their infocomm professionals are up-to-speed on emerging technologies.
16 The results of the survey would serve as inputs to the IDA in formulating policies that would build a qualified pool of Infocomm Manpower in Singapore.
For Summary Report of the 1999 Infocomm Manpower & Skills Survey (43.43KB), please visit the ICT Facts and Figures webpage in the IDA Web site at www.imda.gov.sg.
- Prior to this, the former National Computer Board conducted a biennial IT Manpower & Skills Inventory Survey that focused on IT manpower.
- A person engaged primarily in Infocomm-related work either in an IT supplier, telecommunication vendor, or end-user organisation (including government). The work of the person may include (a) development, distribution, implementation, support and operation of telecommunications, computer hardware/software and multimedia contents; (b) provision of information services to end-users; (c) dissemination of IT knowledge and skills; or (d) management of the above processes. Not included: data entry clerks and computer operators
- The Infocomm industry comprises both Information Technology and Telecommunications companies.
- The Infocomm end-user industry refers to non-Infocomm sector organisations that employ Infocomm manpower.
- This Certification Programme was launched in November 1998. Endorsed by the IDA and managed by the Singapore Computer Society, the programme aims to provide recognition for IT professionals with specific skills.
ISSUED BY CORPORATE COMMUNICATION DIVISION
INFOCOMM DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY OF SINGAPORE
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