Insights from Tech Talent Report 2021

The explosive growth in the Southeast Asia startup ecosystem has many founders and hiring managers grappling to find strong technical talent. As parents, trying to position our child to thrive in the future as the world digitizes at breakneck speed is guaranteed to be a daunting task.


In this post, we summarize key findings from a recent report from Glints and Monk's Hill Ventures titled The Southeast Asia Tech Talent Compensation Report 2020/2021, which sheds some light on the Tech employment market in Asia and more specifically Singapore.


There’s a talent crunch regionally - particularly in Singapore - for engineering and product manager roles. U.S. and China tech companies entering the region - including TikTok, Tencent, Alibaba and Zoom - are more likely to pay above-market rates for tech talent or, in some cases, write blank checks for high performers.


Technical roles are still the most in-demand and highly remunerated across the region. Controlling for level of seniority and geography, we found that technical (product, data science, engineering) roles earned 54% more than non-technical roles (marketing, operations, sales, finance). Both founders and tech talent shared anecdotally that big tech companies offer open contracts to strong candidates; that is where the candidate can practically name their price.


Joining a Tech Startup in Singapore can be exciting and rewarding. With the shortage of technical IT expertise here in Asia, companies are forced to pay for talent as they compete with the big tech firms for human capital. This should not come as a surprise as C-suites of tech companies in Asia often cite the lack of talent as a challenge.

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