Marketing and communications market update – Asia (May 2021)

May 11, 2021

In the last few months we have seen significant growth in marketing and communications hiring across Asia, particularly the job market within financial services which has become more and more buoyant, most notably in April through to May.

This has been a mix of replacement hires and newly created headcount, as well as a lot of hires which went on hold or were not actioned last year which have now opened up. We are seeing the demand for talent grow as both 2020 and 2021 hiring needs become fully active.

The types of skill sets we have seen demand for have been broad however there is a substantial interest in internal & employee communications, digital and performance marketing areas. We have seen less of a mandate for traditional marketers.

Most hiring activity has come from asset management and insurance/reinsurance firms, less so from the corporate and institutional banks who seem to be remaining cautious around growing teams.

There has also been a notable shift in businesses now spending money on their brand management through the recruitment of talent focused on branding, which is something we have not seen in a few years.

Unlike 2020, the candidate market has also become increasingly active across all levels of seniority.

Unsurprisingly, global mobility has slowed down completely which has seen businesses struggle to attract talent from other geographies. In situations where historically hiring managers would have relied on internal mobility programmes to move talent from other global offices they are having to look externally in the local market.

There is less appetite for people to relocate outside of their home countries due to the pandemic especially to countries with strict quarantine measure such as Hong Kong and Singapore. With the pandemic and other geopolitical factors, we are seeing more interest from international candidates to move to Singapore and for those expats based in Hong Kong to explore opportunities in Singapore.