There are a lot of open software engineer jobs in Singapore as the country has become a leading tech innovation hub in Asia. While the tech talent in the region is limited, venture capitalists continue to invest in technology Start-Ups and global tech companies. This demand versus availability gap has increased the software engineer salary in Singapore by 22% for entry levels and 32% for experienced professionals.
This is one of the most exciting times to be a software engineer in Singapore. As a technology recruitment agency, we give software developers access to various tech jobs.
However, if you are new to the technology world and wondering how to break into Software Development and Engineering, you have come to the right place. The following article answers all your questions on how to become a software engineer in Singapore.
Minimum Qualifications for a Software Engineer in Singapore
The Information Technology and communication sector offers several specialised jobs. However, all candidates must possess certain qualities and qualifications to apply for these jobs. The minimum qualifications for a software engineer in Singapore are:
1. Educational Qualifications
You should have a Bachelor's Degree or an Engineering degree in Computer Science or a related technical field to land a software engineer job in Singapore.
Those pursuing a career in software development are also encouraged to pursue a Master's Degree, post-graduate diploma or certification. The vast software engineering education field offers a wide range of specialisations such as Computer Science, Programming, Computer Engineering, Information security, Information Technology, Information and Communications, etc.
Some of the most reputable institutes for software engineering courses in Singapore are:
- National University of Singapore
- Nanyang Technological University
- Singapore Management University
- Singapore University of Technology & Design
- Singapore Polytechnic
2. Technical Skills essential for a Software Engineering Job:
Below are the key topics that companies look for in software engineering candidates:
- Data Structures
- Design Principles
- Database Concepts
- Web Concepts
3. Soft skills essential for a software engineer job in Singapore
Apart from understanding core programming languages and frameworks, software engineers must possess soft skills that will help them grow in their careers. Some of these skills are:
- Logical and structural thinking
- Attention to detail
- Time management
- Strong communication
- Project management
- Openness to feedback
Software Engineer Career Paths
Software engineering is a diverse field with many roles to choose from. Based on the in-demand skills and experience, software engineers can choose from the following career paths.
1. In-demand career path for a software engineer in Singapore based on skills:
- Data Scientist
- Machine Learning
- Cloud engineer
- DevOps Engineer
- Full-stack developer
- Java Developer
- Python Developer
- Cybersecurity Engineer
2. Software engineer career path based on experience:
Entry Level (1-3 years experience)
- Junior software engineer or developer
- Senior software engineer or developer
Mid-Senior Level (4-8 years experience)
- Tech lead
- Technical architect
Senior and Executive level (8 years or more)
- Chief technology officer
- Director of engineering/technology
- Vice-president of engineering/technology
How to Stand Out in the Job Market
Everyone who aims to become a software engineer takes similar degree courses and may have similar coding capabilities. Yet, not everyone aces a software engineer job in Singapore. Along with coding skills, successful candidates should also know how to market their skills through an outstanding resume. They should know how to keep themselves ahead of the competition through continuous learning.
1. Additional certifications/ specialised courses
A computer science degree is just a gateway to software jobs in Singapore. But to build a software engineer career, consider taking technical certifications, diplomas, or other specialised courses.
Some places you can visit to upskill yourself as a software engineer in Singapore are:
- SkillsFuture - SkillsFuture is a government portal in Singapore that offers upskilling programs at all skill levels. There are programmes for students, entry-level employees, mid-level employees, leaders, trainers, etc.
- eCornell Certifications Programme - Cornell University offers more than 80 professional certifications in data science, engineering, leadership, marketing etc.
- Microsoft Learning Online Programme - Most sought-after Microsoft certifications are
- Microsoft 365 Certified Fundamentals
- Azure Administrator Associate
- Azure DevOps Engineer Expert
- Enterprise Administrator Expert
2. Outstanding resume
Long before you speak to the hiring manager (i.e. if you get a chance to speak), your resume or CV does the talking. How well your resume highlights your competencies and skills determines your chances of getting an interview call for a software engineer job in Singapore.
But before your resume reaches the recruiter, it passes through an Applicant Tracking System (ATS). If this software can't read the resume correctly, it's unlikely to make it into the hands of the hiring manager. Thus, you not only need to make an outstanding resume but also one that is ATS friendly.
Follow our article to build a standout ATS-friendly resume.
3. Build a personal brand
Recruiters today don't look out for technical skills alone, but they want to onboard a person whose values and long-term goals align with those the hiring company represents. While your resume speaks a lot about your skills as a software engineer in Singapore, it does not answer all the recruiter's questions. Hence, hiring managers often will check your online presence to understand your personality, motivations and goals. To stand out from your peers, you should focus on building a fantastic online brand as a software developer.
Tips to Secure your job
There is cut-throat competition in the information technology field, and on top of that is the volatility in the market. If tech talent hiring rises, so are layoffs, job firings, and retrenchment in Singapore. To secure your software engineer job in Singapore, you must make yourself indispensable at work. Below are some ways to make yourself a valuable resource in the company so that you always stay at the bottom of the layoffs list:
1. Continuous upskilling
To stay relevant in the market, learn new languages and frameworks. Your ability to grasp challenging concepts quickly will set you apart from your peers.
Also, stay up-to-date with what is trending in your industry. Follow industry thought leaders, read books, and blogs, listen to tech podcasts or chat with technology experts around you. Another way you can stay accustomed to the latest technology trends is to become a part of a tech community like HackerTrail, where you can clear your doubts, seek advice and learn from others' experiences.
2. Go above and beyond your regular work
The amount of effort you put into a job always counts. In order to ensure your job security in Singapore, you should always be prepared to strive above and beyond the minimum requirements of your job. Do more than what you are asked for and demonstrate your dedication to the job, the company and its goals.
Every employee does the task assigned to them, but only stellar employees are proactive and creative to walk the extra mile and stand out from others.
3. Be a highly productive and consistent performer
As a software engineer in Singapore, your work may appear exceptional and sometimes average. However, the idea is to remain consistent.
To increase your job security in Singapore, follow some productivity hacks for software engineers and follow them rigorously:
- Create to-do lists
- Use a productivity app
- Keep distractions at bay
- Stay updated with the latest technical skills
- Share your knowledge- train others, write articles
- Interact at meetings and code reviews
- Have a mentor
4. Network a lot
In larger organisations, it is not always easy to reach people higher up on the professional ladder. However, networking will open doors for you to meet people at all experience levels. Networking can help you learn a lot from others' wisdom and experience, which will, in turn, help in your career growth and increase your job security in Singapore.
Not just that, networking will provide an opportunity to share your skills with others and build yourself as an expert.
To build a solid network, start by strengthening your relationships with colleagues, ex-colleagues, previous managers, and friends from other companies and industries. Network virtually through technical meets, events, professional networks, and tech communities.
How HackerTrail Can Help
Once you upskill yourself as a software engineer, the next step is to be interview ready and begin to find a job. Hackertrail, one of the leading recruitment agencies in Singapore, can help you in every step of your journey. This includes interview preparation, skills practice or helping you connect to open jobs. With HackerTrail, you also get access to virtual events where you can connect with tech professionals to receive career advice.
Reach out to us today to find a lucrative software job in Singapore!