Continuing to be sought after by employers, polytechnic graduates commanded higher salaries in 2018 than in 2017.
According to the latest polytechnic Graduate Employment Survey (GES) graduates across the five polytechnics in Singapore who were in full-time permanent employment earned an overall median gross monthly salary of S$2,350 in 2018 – a 5.15% increase from the S$2,235 in 2017.
Similar to 2017, graduates from the health sciences courses continued to take home the largest paycheque at S$2,523. While engineering graduates were the second highest earners with a median gross monthly salary of S$2,400.
This accounts for both fresh graduates and post-NS graduates.
The survey further revealed that among respondents (both fresh graduates and post-NS graduates) who entered the labour force, the overall employment rate six months after graduation was 89.5%, 2.2 percentage points higher than in 2017.
At the same time, the proportion who were unemployed and still looking for a job (8.2%) or in involuntary part‐time/temporary employment (2.2%) decreased by a total of 4.4 percentage points - compared to 9.7% and 5.1% respectively in 2017.
Among the 9,330 fresh graduates who responded to the survey, as at 1 October 2018 (around six months after their final examinations), 63.3% were in the labour force; 36.0% were pursuing or preparing to begin further studies; and most of the remaining 0.7% said they were taking a break and not seeking employment.
Of those in the labour force, 89.0% were employed in 2018 - an increase from 86.4% in 2017. Among them, 55.9% were in full‐time permanent employment, 2.7% were working on a freelance basis, and 30.5% were in part‐ time/temporary employment.
The survey further revealed that the majority (28.0%) who were on part-time/temporary employment were doing so voluntarily, while only 2.5% were in it as were unable to find a full-time permanent job.
Most of the fresh graduates in part‐time/temporary employment were pursuing or preparing to begin further studies. Of the remaining, most were trying out the field/job to see if it was suitable for them, earning some income while searching for their ideal job, or preferred shorter and/or flexible work hours
The median gross monthly salary among fresh graduates in full‐time permanent employment was S$2,270, up from S$2,200 in 2017.
As for post-NS graduates, of the 5,657 who took part, 48.1% of respondents were in the labour force. About half (51.5%) were pursuing or preparing to begin further studies and hence not looking for jobs, while most of the remaining (0.4%) were taking a break and not seeking employment.
As at 1 October 2018, 90.5% of the respondents in the labour force were employed. Among those, 65.7% were in full‐time permanent employment, 7.3% were working on a freelance basis, and 17.5% were in part‐time/temporary employment in 2018.
Similar to the fresh graduates, the majority (15.9%) who were on part-time/temporary employment were doing so voluntarily, while only 1.5% were in it as were unable to find a full-time permanent job. The post‐NS graduates in voluntary part‐time/temporary employment had similar reasons to the fresh graduates.
In terms of salary, however, post-NS graduates commanded more at S$2,501 - an increase from from $2,480 in 2017.