Sector Spotlight: Electronics

Though the forecast may be dim in general, the electronics industry – particularly the semiconductors industry – has been a bright example of growth and transformation. The sector has outperformed other segments of the economy, and is likely to continue to offer more job opportunities.

Some facts:

  • In the first nine months of the year, Singapore’s electronics sector as a whole has recorded more than $5.7 billion in fixed assets investment and more than $376 million in total business expenditure.
  • The semiconductor industry’s contribution to Singapore’s gross domestic product has increased from less than 1% in 1990 to 6.9% in 2019.
  • In the first six months of 2020, the semiconductor industry’s output increased 1.7% year on year, even as the overall economy suffered its worst-ever recession.
  • Total employment in the segment grew by 1,000 between April and June, despite Singapore’s worst-ever quarterly fall in employment.

Hiring in electronics

There have been some 1,900 jobs on offer since April till now in this industry. The vast majority are PMET roles with technical knowledge required such as professionals, managers, executives and technician. There are also non-technical roles such as sales and marketing positions.

Besides jobs, there are also about 850 company-hosted traineeships and attachments, as well as 150 training positions, on offer in the industry.

This openness to hiring can be attributed to the surge in demand for digital goods and services to stay connected. Hence, the sector is expanding, specialising in fields such as semiconductor, consumer electronics and information technology.

What jobs are available in electronics?

Broadly, the electronics sector produces electronic equipment and consumer electronics and manufactures electrical components for a variety of products. Industries within the electronics sector include telecommunications, networking, electronic components, industrial electronics, and consumer electronics

Hence, while jobs in this sector do favour a technical background, there are plenty of other work tasks involved in a successful electronics business.

Jobs include:

Electronics Engineer

  • Degree in Engineering or related field
  • 2-4 years’ experience
  • 2,800 – 3,500 SGD / Month
  • This entry-level position covers wide range of fields and work tasks. Engineers may be expected to maintain and upkeep equipment, perform troubleshooting, ensure processes match international guidelines, and do repair and installation work.

Production Technician

  • NITEC/Diploma Mechanical/Electrical Engineering
  • 1,200 – 1,800 SGD / Month
  • A production Technician ensures productions processes run smoothly. They operate, monitor and maintain systems in compliance with relevant safety standards. They may also assist other teams on an ad-hoc basis.

Purchasing Officer

  • Degree or Diploma in Business, Purchasing, Engineering or Logistics Management
  • 1-3 years of relevant experience
  • 2,600 SGD – 3,100 SGD / Month
  • A purchasing officer manages purchasing functions such as sourcing and obtain price quotes from multiple suppliers and forwarders, performing inventory checks, maintaining supply and vendor lists, preparing reports and assisting with audits. This is a senior role that often requires experience in the sector.

What qualifications are needed for a career in this sector?

Manpower Minister Josephine Teo addressed a common misconception that you need a technical background to work in the electronics and larger manufacturing sector.

“Job seekers who have technical background, but come from different sectors, may already possess many transferrable skills. By acquiring additional domain knowledge, these job seekers can access opportunities in the electronics industry,” she said, noting that unfamiliarity with the job scope of opportunities in the cluster may be a factor in lower applications for roles in the industry.

Additionally, we found that many electronics companies were willing to hire those without experience in the sector, so long as they had a related degree.

What career opportunities are there in the sector?

Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing said the semiconductor industry has continued to grow steadily and the sector has very bright prospects in the coming years.

Hefty investments into the sector will create about 1,100 jobs when they are fully realised over the next three to five years, on top of the employment opportunities created by the sector so far.

The opportunity in this sector can already be felt, as over 130 companies in the electronics industry have offered more than 2,800 opportunities since April – 1,880 are jobs and the rest are attachments and training opportunities. Almost all of the job roles offered were for professionals, managers, executives and technicians (PMETs).

Apply for a career in electronics now!