Here's where the jobs are at Singapore's seven most important banks
If you’re looking for a banking job in Singapore, chances are that Citi, DBS, HSBC, Maybank, OCBC, Standard Chartered and UOB will be on your radar. The Monetary Authority of Singapore last month deemed these seven firms to have the greatest impact on the potential stability of the country’s financial system.
Singapore's de facto “big seven” are also among the top recruiters of financial talent and are collectively advertising some 1,100 roles in the city state. To kick start your job search, we’ve trawled through the banks’ careers websites to identify some of the departments they’re hiring in (and some you may wish to avoid applying to right now).
Where it’s hot: Citi’s global consumer banking division in Singapore has an impressive 89 vacancies right now, from a local total of 200. And while there’s a smattering of low-level retail jobs within this number, most are professional posts – from relationship management to regulatory risk.
Where it’s not: Citi has a few jobs going in mass-affluent banking (its Citigold brand) but if you’re a private banker, the firm only has one vacancy for you right now.
Hot job: Citi wants to hire a Singapore-based head of cyber crime. You’ll need five to ten years of information and/or network security experience, while a background in US intelligence, the military or law enforcement is a plus.
Where it’s hot: While many of DBS’ vacancies are now in overseas locations, the firm still has 259 roles on offer at home. As Singapore’s largest local bank, these vacancies are spread across multiple divisions, but corporate and investment banking still manages a fairly impressive 20 roles. Most of these are in the front-office and associate-level jobs abound.
Where it’s not: Thought data management and cash management were sough-after sectors right now? Not at DBS – it’s only got one opening in the former and none in the latter.
Hot job: Want to work in a sector where hiring is running hot in Singapore? Try digital banking. DBS has a few roles on offer at its digital bank, including head of sales and customer acquisition. You’ll be tasked with formulating a “commercialisation strategy” for the division.
Where it’s hot: There’s currently no stand-out job sector within HSBC Singapore, but the firm is keen to bolster its middle ranks: 27 of its 59 vacancies – from compliance to trade finance – are at VP or assistant VP level. If you’re an associate looking to step up, you know which firm to apply to.
Where it’s not: Offshoring to less costly Asian locations means most foreign banks have stopped hiring en masse for Singapore-based fintech and operations roles. HSBC is no exception – it has only four jobs in IT and one each in operations and accounting
Hot job: While most banks in Singapore are hiring relationship managers, HSBC is also now recruiting a “wealth coach” to improve the performance of its premiere banking RMs. You’ll be tasked with training them in “investment solutions, financial planning, portfolio management and client skills”.
Where it’s hot: Maybank’s risk team has five open roles out of 28 across the firm in Singapore. And it wants senior staff, including heads of enterprise risk management and operational risk.
Where it’s not: Maybank may be expanding its consumer and corporate bank in Singapore, but it’s not hiring in investment banking right now.
Hot job: Want to put your equities knowledge to work within a comparatively secure part of the banking sector? Want a more strategic role? Maybank’s wealth management unit is searching for an equities specialist to develop and maintain its investment strategy in Singapore.
Where it’s hot: Singaporean banks, unlike their global rivals, are keeping most of their technology staff based in the Republic. OCBC has 18 IT vacancies right now (out of 160 open roles). Murex skills are particularly sought after.
Where it’s not: Unlike its risk team, which has 23 jobs on offer, OCBC’s compliance unit appears staffed up for now – it has an usually low three vacancies.
Hot job: Want to work at the heart of a brewing battle between Singaporean banks? Why not join OCBC as a social media executive. Earlier this year OCBC sparked a backlash from DBS and UOB over claims it had the widest social reach of the three firms.
Where it’s hot: While Stan Chart hasn’t yet relocated its headquarters from London to Singapore, its recruitment in the city state is focused on core functions. The firm has more risk (20), finance (16) general management (9) and HR (6) vacancies in Singapore than in any other location. It has 135 Singapore roles on offer in total.
Where it’s not: While 18 technology and operations jobs in Singapore sounds like a lot, across the border in Malaysia Stan Chart has 53 of these positions going within its Scope back-office unit.
Hot job: Stan Chart is seeking an organisational scientist to provide data insights about organisational performance to its HR team. At least five years of organisational research or survey analysis experience is a must and the bank would also prefer a Master’s or PhD in a research or social science.
Where it’s hot: While only making up about 12% of its 260 total vacancies, UOB has a surprisingly high 32 open positions in global markets – a lot more than most of its rivals do.
Where it’s not: Want to bring your employer-branding skills to UOB to help the bank shake off its somewhat dowdy image? You’re out of luck right now – its group-brands team has no openings.
Hot job: According to a recent report from KGI Fraser Securities, the success of Singaporean banks increasingly now depends on their ability to expand overseas. So what better way to future proof your career than by working as a VP in group strategy and international management at UOB? You’ll need at least 10 years’ experience in banking, and regional exposure is advantageous.