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DBS hires 1,363 new staff as salaries surge

DBS’s headcount rose by 1,363 in the year to end-June as it added more technology jobs in Singapore. The bank employed 27,060 people in Q2 2019, up from 25,697 a year previously, according to its second quarter results.

How did DBS manage to boost its workforce by more than 5% in just a year? About 42% of the 1,363 new DBS jobs were for what the firm classifies as “insourced” tech professionals – people who previously worked on DBS tech projects at vendors but are now employed by the bank. DBS has been bringing technologists in-house for the last couple of years and these new figures show the process is ongoing.

It’s likely, however, that technology professionals account for an even greater proportion of the new recruits at DBS, because the bank hasn’t only been putting ex-vendor staff on its payroll. DBS has also been poaching from both tech firms and banks.

It’s been hiring, for example, senior engineers to lead its development of AI, deep-data engineering, APIs, and mobile applications, Soh Siew Choo, head of consumer banking and big data analytics technology, told us earlier this year.

DBS has 159 experienced-level tech vacancies in Singapore right now, according to its careers website. The firm’s annual recruitment hackathon, Hack2Hire, also helps it to add new junior developers – as many as 100 in Singapore and India – to its workforce.

Meanwhile, DBS appears to be getting more generous with its compensation, perhaps partly because its recent technology hires are well rewarded. Singapore’s competitive tech job market is helping to push up pay for tech professionals in the city state. Staff costs per head at DBS – total employee expenditure (such as salaries and bonuses) divided by total headcount – went up by an inflation-busting 6% (S$1,828) year on year to reach S$32,299 for the second quarter.

Image credit: RomanBabakin, Getty

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AUTHORSimon Mortlock Content Manager

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