Singapore Job Application FAQ: Should You Provide Salary Information?

Published: 19th February 2010
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Many job advertisements in Singapore ask applicants to provide their previous/current and expected salary. Clients often ask me whether or not they should provide this. The answer is - Yes you should but'do so but in the right/smart way.

In terms why employers ask for your salary - this information could be used to:

1) Quickly weed out candidates who earn/expect well above the salary the employer wants to pay

'2) Have a better understanding of your expectations, so that they don't pay you too much more than you expect (sometimes even if they think the job role justifies a higher amount!)

While you don't want to upset potential employers by not providing information they explicitly ask for, you don't need to provide exactly what they ask for either. My recommendation is to give a broad range for both the previous/current and the expected salary. You might include something like this in your application, for example:

Previous/Current Salary Range: SGD 4,000 - SGD 6,000

Expected Salary: SGD 5,000 - SGD 7,000

This achieves quite a few goals:

1.You provide the employer'with the information they ask for

2.You minimise the chances of being weeded out in early stages of the selection process

3.You leave enough room for negotiating a fair salary, once you progress through the selection process and have a better understanding of the exact job scope. This is a classic salary negotiation technique and works well, since if you are progressing through the selection process it means that the employer likes you and will be more open to discussion on salary

Amit has over 10 years of career advisory, organisational psychology, business management and finance experience/education. He is the Managing Consultant at Sandbox Advisors, a career, job search and HR consulting firm.

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