Money makes the world go round. Though a high-paying job isn’t everything, it definitely paves the way for a more comfortable life. If you’re considering options for your career path or even a mid-career change, could any of these top high-paying jobs in Singapore be the right fit for you?
Let’s face it, no matter how passionate you are about a particular job, salary always matters. While some are privileged enough to pursue their passion while drawing a decent monthly salary, you might meet others who have given up their passions for money and vice versa.
Who’s to say what’s right? In an ideal world, everyone will be working their dream jobs while being able to sustain their lifestyle. But the harsh reality is that some jobs just don’t pay as much as others. Whether it’s due to the high barriers to entry, specialised skills or the demanding nature of certain roles, the salary range across industries greatly varies.
If you’re reading this article now, and it’s making you feel worse about your pay, remember that each industry has its own salary benchmarks. There are other factors that play a part in your career satisfaction, such as gaining new skills, work-life balance, or a supportive family-friendly company culture.
Related to this topic:
Which sectors make up Singapore’s economy?
According to a SkillsFuture report adapted from TODAY, there seems to be a surge in the number of job opportunities for roles in the digital, green and care economies. They highlight that they will continue to be in demand over the next three years, as well as the skillsets needed for such roles.
On top of that, MOM also released a report stating that outward-oriented sectors like Information & Communications and Financial Services saw steady growth from 4Q 2021 to 1Q 2022, due to a rise in demand for IT and digital services, as well as security dealing and payments processing. On the contrary, sectors like Food & Beverages Services, Retail Trade and Accomodation faced a decline in employment rate following the fourth quarter.
Though such results aren’t indicative of future performance, we can expect to see most of these industries boom and Singapore finally takes a step forward in our COVID-19 journey.
Top paying jobs in Singapore
|Job Position / Industry||Monthly Gross Median Salary|
|In-house legal counsel||S$14,167|
|Securities and finance broker/dealer||S$13,750|
|Chief Information Officer/Chief Technology Officer/Chief Security Officer||S$13,241|
|Specialist Medical Practitioner (Medical)||S$12,591|
|Chief Operating Officer/General Manager||S$12,159|
1. In house legal counsel
It is with no doubt that individuals working in this industry will fetch a fat paycheck — after all, those who can make it to be lawyers have to be the creme of the crop. Just to qualify as a lawyer, you must first obtain a law degree from an accredited university. After graduation, you’ll also have to pass the Singapore Bar Examination and undergo six months of training.
After which, successful lawyers will also need at least three years of experience practising law.
As an in-house legal counsel, your role is to tackle any legal issues that the company may face, as well as draft out legally binding documents and contracts for the company. You’ll also need to have a good foundation in business to consider the company’s best interests.
2. Securities and finance broker/dealer
Another industry that pays very decently is finance, and that goes without saying. Anyone working as a securities and finance broker would need in-depth knowledge of the market and have a high level of analytical skills.
Since they are responsible for selling commodities and securities on behalf of their clients or for themselves, being an avid investor is not enough. They’ll need to be exceptionally well-versed with everything investment-wise.
3. Chief Information Officer/Chief Technology Officer/Chief Security Officer
Though a Chief Information Officer and Chief Technology Officer do two separate jobs, they still earn the same median salary. The former is responsible for the overall strategic planning and management of the company’s IT strategy, while the latter oversees the development of technology for the business to grow — like R&D and product development.
On the other hand, a Chief Security Officer is responsible for managing the internal security of the company and ensuring compliance with security policies and procedures.
As core players in the business, they are quite high up in the ranks and command a good pay for the work that they do.
4. Advocate/Solicitor (Practising)
These two roles also fall under the legal team but are entirely different from an in-house legal consultant. An advocate is one who specialises in litigation for their clients while a solicitor deals with advisory and corporate work.
In Singapore, all lawyers who have passed the bar are eligible to do both professions and are well deserving of a high pay because of the level of expertise that is required.
5. Audit manager
Being an auditor is already no easy feat, let alone being appointed as an audit manager, which usually requires about five to ten years of auditing experience.
An auditor oversees and manages operational and financial audits and performs risk assessments for teh company. As an audit manager, their job scope widens to include coaching and guiding their junior audit staff, leading the audit team and scope audit frameworks.
They’ll need to be an expert at financial audits and require rigorous background checks for them to secure such a role. They possess high analytical and problem-solving skills and are definitely exceptional with their numbers.
6. Specialist Medical Practitioner
Besides being a lawyer, it is (almost) every Singaporean’s dream to become a doctor, but whether you make the cut is another thing altogether. Getting into medical school is known to be extremely difficult, with only the top students being able to rise up to the challenge.
Even after getting into med school, you’ll need to study for another five years there, and go through years of residency in a hospital before you can even think of being a Specialist Medical Practitioner. You’ll also need to obtain specialist accreditation from the Specialists Accreditation Board (SAB).
Since Singapore is known for its impeccable medical services due to our advanced medical health care technology, there is no doubt why they are paid handsomely.
7. General Practitioner/Physician
If you don’t want to be a Specialist Medical Practitioner, being a General Practitioner or Physician is still considered a high-paying salary. Those are the doctors at your nearby clinics that offer the first line of care whenever anyone requires medical attention.
Their job isn’t easy too. They have to also go through medical school and be exceptionally well-versed in all areas. After undergoing postgraduate training in Family Medicine and years of hands-on experience, they will be able to qualify as a General Practitioner.
9. Chief Operating Officer/General Manager
Whether you’re a COO or a GM of the company, you can expect to command a high pay. If you’re in the financial services sector, you can even reportedly earn as much as S$27,855.
As both names suggest, you’re essentially managing hundreds of people, making sure that all the operations are streamlined and in check, and being the one to make the final call for any company decision.
Being in this role requires exceptional interpersonal skills, and strong leadership skills to be able to manage a huge team. You definitely can’t be a people-pleaser and are required to think quickly on your feet and make decisions that will benefit the company.
9. University Lecturer
A university lecturer isn’t just the glamourised version of a Secondary School teacher. Aside from educating students, university lecturers also have their own research papers to publish on the side. They are required to conduct research, present findings to conferences or journals and even publish books.
What’s more is that all university lecturers require a recognised degree and PhD in the relevant discipline, and sometimes even a good track record in their research.
10. Fund/Portfolio Manager
Similar to finance brokers, fund managers manage a wide range of funds for their clients, mainly mutual funds, hedge funds and trust funds. They are responsible for implementing investment strategies and carrying out trading activities. This would require them to have an eye for detail, be highly analytical and conduct extensive research in order to make crucial investment decisions for their clients.
Usually, you will need a recognised Bachelor’s Degree in Finance, Financial Planning, Business, Economics or Mathematics in order to apply for such a position or have relevant experience in the field.
If you’re in any of these in-demand roles, good for you! For the rest of us, slow and steady is one way to reach your goals, whether it’s working towards early retirement or financial freedom. Compare the best investing platforms to grow your investment portfolio now.
By Deborah Gan
A mahjong addict with an undying love for dogs, Deborah is always on the hunt for cheap deals because she is always broke. That is why she is attempting to be more financially savvy to be.. less broke.