The Gen Z workers in Singapore, who began their careers in the middle of a pandemic marked by disruptions, reduced opportunities, and uncertainty about their future, may consider relocation to other countries the gateway to greener pastures and a fresh start for their careers.
As many as 51% of workers aged between 18–24, and 43% between the ages of 24–34 in Singapore are planning or considering relocation for their jobs, reveals the ADP Research Institute’s People at Work 2022: A Global Workforce View.
In comparison, older workers with established careers and families are less likely to want major changes in their lives with only 3 in 10 workers planning to relocate to another country for work.
The People at Work 2022 report explores employees’ attitudes towards the current world of work and what they expect and hope for from the workplace of the future, with almost 33,000 workers in 17 countries surveyed. In Singapore, over 1,900 workers above the age of 18 were surveyed.
The survey notes that in light of the labour crunch that Singapore is currently facing, it is paramount for companies to consider how to best engage and retain their young employees to combat a potential brain drain.
“The finding that over five in 10 Gen Z workers have plans to relocate may be surprising at first, but it is worth noting that these employees began their careers during the pandemic and saw reduced opportunities and disruptions. This is in addition to those who might already be looking for overseas opportunities—with or without the pandemic—for their own exposure and life experience,” said Yvonne Teo, vice president of human resources, Asia Pacific, ADP.
Teo said companies should consider how to retain talent by providing opportunities for growth and career advancement.
For employees thinking of relocation, companies can consider exchange programmes in overseas offices, stretch assignments, and department rotation.
“This not only benefits the company from a retention standpoint, but also encourages new and different ideas from the cross-culture young talent posted overseas. At the same time, it also has the added benefit of allowing employees to experience working overseas first-hand - gaining the exposure and life experience they may be seeking without looking outside their company.
“Lastly, for such systems to work, a consideration for companies would be making sure that HCM and payroll systems stay robust across regional markets, differing tax policies, and currencies,” Teo added.