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Career Plan Essay: Employment Opportunities at Singapore

Question

Task:
Career Plan Essay Instructions: Part A

A 3,000 word reflective commentary, which focuses on your planned journey from education into employment or if you are already currently employed, how your programme of study will support your career enhancement.

Part A: Will discuss the current marketplace for graduate employment opportunities (including graduate training programmes). In this section, you can provide a general overview or focus on a particular industry or even your particular discipline, for example, finance. All students may use the UK or their home country as the context for this section. Your discussion MUST review relevant academic literature.

Part B-1
Part B: Will describe and discuss your intended career plan. Your commentary should include reference to academic literature where relevant, and MUST include the following:

  • Your target position, with a rationale for your choice within the context of a longer-term career plan.
  • An assessment of suitability for your target position using a variety of feedback gained during the seminar activities and directed study, e.g. psychometric test results and feedback on internal or external interview and assessment centre activities. Please include other sources of evidence if relevant.
  • Identification of your personal strengths and weaknesses, related to your chosen position.
  • A conclusion, which should identify your next steps to build on strengths and address weaknesses. For example, if you have identified a need for work experience or to improve an essential skill area, you need to explain why, how and when you plan to it.

Part B-2
Your target position, with a rationale for your choice within the context of a longer-term career plan.

  • You need to clearly identify your short term target position (likely either a placement or role on graduation).
  • After outlining this, you need to summarise your longer-term career plans, explaining your short term target in relation to being successful in your longer-term career.

Part B-3
An assessment of suitability for your target position using a variety of feedback gained during the seminar activities and directed study, e.g. psychometric test results and feedback on internal or external interview and assessment centre activities. Please include other sources of evidence if relevant.

  • Referring back to the target role you outlined at the start of Part B, you need to conduct a reflective self-assessment of your own suitability for this position.
  • You can treat this as a ‘matching’ exercise, between yourself and the specific selection criteria for your target role (taken from the job advert/person specification).
  • You need to support your evaluation with a range of evidence.

Part B-4
Identification of your personal strengths and weaknesses, related to your chosen position.

  • Based on your self-assessment against the criteria for your target position, provide a summary of the identified strengths and ‘gaps’/areas for development.
  • NB: This should not be a summary of the strengths/weaknesses of the target company/role; this is a summary of your personal strengths and areas for development based on the evaluation of suitability you have conducted.

Part B-5
A conclusion, which should identify your next steps to build on strengths and address weaknesses. For example, if you have identified a need for work experience or to improve an essential skill area, you need to explain why, how and when you plan to it.

Answer

Part A: Career Plan Essay
Singapore's marketplace is said to be the most positive free-market economy and frequently notches fine on the list of the slightest unethical countries around the world. As compared to the rest of the world, the rate of unemployment is lower at 2.2%. The country's haven is considered hectic globally, with exports vital to the economy. As such, it can be said that the job opportunity is at an increasing level in the country. As per the analysis, the workforce in Singaporean country is extremely multicultural that contains workforce belonging to the Chinese, Malay and Indian countries. The analysis has also identified that the Singapore marketplace positions highest for the entire employment knowledge. The employees are dragged to a job in the country because of their robust and steady economy.

Most of the bachelors and youngsters shifted to Singapore to develop their occupations through more than 30% improvements on their earnings.
In addition to that, it has been found that the administration has created few steps to decrease the dependence of the country on imported labor, mainly in inexpert parts; Singapore preserves an exposed and varied civilization that entices many global laborers at the level of graduate. Since the retailing industry has been focused on the assignment, the positive scenario of the jobs opportunity and employment in Singapore has positively impacted the retail industry. The career can also be developed in the retail industries of the country as it requires higher-skilled people for the development of the industry. As unemployment is lower as compared to that of the rest of the world, it can be said that most of the international workforce also prefers to create their career in the Singaporean marketplace (Tat & Toh, 2014).

The following detailed analysis can provide a better illustration of the worth of the Singaporean marketplace for job opportunities:
Salaries for placements/graduate jobs-Since the Singaporean market is advantageous for the graduate students, and they get more job opportunities to create their augmented career growth, it can be assumed that the salaries they receive are also enough for them. In the Singaporean market, 8000 is considered to be more than enough, and the average salary is said to be 3500 at maximum level and 3000 at minimum. The main reason behind Singapore being at a top work abroad destination is the highest salary paid and opportunities provided to the graduates in various sectors. It has been identified that Employers in Singapore have been seeking the acquirements of foreign talent, and as such, salaries can be extremely lucrative as recruiters try to entice international workers.

Top Companies/locations- As per the fact that Singapore is considered to be one of the best job career places in the world, the topmost companies that could provide opportunities to the graduate students are Google, Singapore Airlines, DBS, and J.P. Morgan that have emerged as some of the topmost ideal employers among the university students in Singapore. Apart from that, several companies that have been recruiting fresh graduates are Shopee, Bytedence, Defence Science and Technology Agency, Singapore Tourism Board, KPMG, Enterprise Singapore, Schaeffler (Singapore), and many more. Expectations of employers in placement students/graduates- In every corner of the world, seeking jobs does not only require a professional resume and ticking all the boxes in the job description. Similarly, in Singapore, most of the employers seek for experience before recruiting them as an employee. The major requirements that employers seek for the candidates are the best talent, skills, knowledge, and ability to learn during their performances, creativity, and new ideas. Hence, the candidates must have the mentioned skills and have fulfilled the above criteria to build their career for their brighter future (Mycareersfuture.gov.sg, 2018).

Trends in the job market for placements/graduates jobs-The changes in the job market for appointments or graduates jobs are that the COVID 19 has led the country to have certain changes in the job market of Singapore (Michaelpage.com.sg, 2021). Because of the downfall in each industry around the world, Singaporean graduates are harassed to catch occupations during the situation of this COVID 19 and distress concerning that they might require to reimburse up to S$100,000 (£56,830) to the administration to disrupt their post-graduation job contracts. In addition to that, the placements are not offered to the students as most of the countries are in recession as of now (Bhaskaran, 2018).

Discipline-specific issues/challenges in the job market- The specific issue that has been identified in the job market of Singapore is that in the present situation, the number of graduates is increasing on a rapid basis, whereas the number of potential employment is getting low day by day. Therefore, this issue has the risk of future difficulties regarding unemployment. As such, the rate of unemployment might increase in the country. As the focus of this paper is to target the consumer service representative, the identified issue might adversely affect the job market (Smith, 2019).

Perspective on graduate employability/skills- The Singaporean job market is ranked as one of the top career markets in the world. Hence, it is not just because of the higher opportunities provided on the market. But the market is on the top rank because of the augmented and advanced skills that the new fresher bring with them. As such, employers' perceptions on graduate employability and skills are that they expect higher skills and talent in their companies. As per the Singaporean employer's perspective on the graduate skills, it can be said that they think that fresher are the best employees that can sync with the new and advanced technologies and lead to the development of the company (Weligamage, 2021).

Value of a placement/study abroad- With the consideration of the job placement in Singapore, the job market is one of the most valuable placement for the graduates that contains most of the international graduates as well. It is because the graduates can be placed in one of the topmost companies as per their ability and educational background. It is valuable because the companies make sure that the employees are satisfied with their job so that they work well and develop professionally as well as personally.

Part B: Reflexive Commentary
Introduction

The key aim of the reflective commentary is to identify the main objectives of career planning. The reflexive commentary mainly includes four parts- the first part discusses my long-term career planning with a rationale of selected target position, the second part describes the suitability of my target position, the third part includes my personal strengths and weaknesses and its relevancy with the target position, and the last part is about the measures that can help me to work on my strengths and weaknesses. The actions that need to be undertaken for improving my skills and my profile are added in this part. The reflexive commentary not only reflects on my short and long-term career planning and goals but also provides an in-depth analysis of the target position and the suitability of the target position as per my skills and strengths.

The rationale for target position and long-term career plan
My key aim is to proceed with my career in customer service; there are severe steps that I have to follow in the short-term goals to reach the long-term goal of my career. My target position is quality assurance manager, which is mainly based on the role of customer service. However, the role of a quality assurance manager is different from other personnel working under customer service. The quality assurance manager ensures that the customer service representatives follow a set of quality to deliver a better customer experience. The role and responsibilities of a quality assurance manager may differ from one organization to another or the product or service an organization is delivering. The key role of the quality assurance manager is to establish and implement the quality standards and evaluates the performance of the team members. To reach out to the long-term goal of my career, firstly, I have to build up my skills and gather experience in customer service management. Currently, I am looking for a job in customer service management as it is one of the key requirements of eligibility for a quality assurance manager. As I am specialized in customer service, and I have my diploma, so it is the right time to be placed in an organization where I can enhance my skills related to the field.

My key target is retail organizations that are located in Singapore. The reason I want to experience in retail organization is the experience of customer service in the retail organization will help me to remain in close contact with the customer on a daily basis, and the experience that I will gain during my work will help me build new skills and well as improving my existing skills. As my specialization is in customer service, so working in similar jobs as per my specialization will help me to better understand the responsibilities of customer service management, and it will help me to enhance my profile for future career planning. As for my short-term target position, the customer service representative is suitable for my career growth. I am planning to pursue a career in quality assurance management, so experience in customer service management is necessary.

As for my long-term career plan, my aim is to work as a quality assurance manager. For this job role, experience in customer service management and related skills are important. Hence, starting my career as a customer service representative is a suitable option for my career development. To reach out my long-term goal of the career, I have to achieve my short-term goals of the target position. The short-term target position matches my career expectancy as well as my skills and qualification, so it will ensure better career development for long-term career planning. Quality assurance manager is a suitable job role for my long-term career as it will help me to develop my customer service-related skills. The short-term target is to gain experience in a retail organization as a customer service representative. It is suitable for my career planning as the role will help me to work as a front-line employee who resolves customer issues.

The experience that I will gain during this job role enhances my personal and professional skills in the realm of customer service management. The experience that I will gain during my work period will be beneficial for my future career goal and will help me to pass out the eligibility criteria for quality assurance manager. Along with the relevant job experience, I am planning to continue a certification course in quality assurance, which will boost my CV and lead towards an adequate path of my career. However, quality assurance certification is not necessary for an individual who wants a career as a quality assurance manager, but pursuing the course will help me to learn about many things of quality assurance management that will be helpful for my career development.

Suitability of target position
The suitability of a job role basically depends on the education qualification, key skills, strengths and weaknesses, and goal of career planning. The qualification required to become a quality assurance manager is a bachelor or higher degree, experience in customer service management, deep understanding about industry standards, and excellent communication and leadership skills. The education qualification is one of my strengths or the career path as I have specialized in customer service, so it will help me carry out the path of my career efficiently. I am suitable for this career path because it matches not only my educational qualification, but also my career goals. I always wanted to proceed with my career in customer service management and aimed to be in a leadership position in customer service management. At this point, a quality assurance manager is suitable for my long-term career.

The key role of a quality assurance manager or quality assurance specialist is to ensure better customer service quality and improve the performance of customer service agents who are in direct contact with the customers. In this case, effective communication skills, leadership skill, decision-making skill, and teamwork are important. Along with that, technical skills and knowledge about the industry are also important to enhance the profile.

Job advertisements in different job portals help me a lot to known about the job availability in Singapore, employers, and pay scale for the specific job role. The main job portals that I used for my reference are Job Central, Monster, and Job Street. The job portals not only provide information about the organizations and pay scale but also provide information about the eligibility criteria and skills required for the job role. The information that I have gathered from the job advertisements helped me a lot to build up adequate career planning. Most of the job advertisements show that experience in customer service management is necessary to be a quality assurance manager. Hence, I came up with the idea that starting a job as a customer service representative will be the best option to boost my profile for the job role.

The reason I find this job role suitable for my career is the opportunities I will gain in the long term of my career. I already have my diploma and specialization in customer service, so it is a better opportunity for me to pursue a career in customer service management. I choose to experience as a customer service representative as the first step for my career planning as the experience in customer service management will help me to become more eligible for the job role. The skills are also important for the job role apart from the qualification as the competency in the job market is high in Singapore. Employers look for candidates who have relevant skills, past job experience, and adaptability for the job, so I am focusing on those things. The quality assurance certification is not necessary for the job role, but I will pursue the certification course for a better opportunity. While selecting suitable candidates from the pool of candidates, employers analyze the profile of a candidate based on qualification, past job experience, key skills, and score in the interview or other tests. Based on the overall judgment, a candidate is selected for the job role. Past job experience plays a key role in this context as if a candidate having experience in a similar field or in a similar industry; then it increases the chance of getting selected.

The experience that I will gain during my job in customer service management and the addition of a quality assurance certification program will increase my chance of getting selected as a quality assurance manager.

Identification of personal strengths and weaknesses
Strengths and weaknesses play a key role in building up the profile of a candidate. The strength factors help us to do excel in our work, whereas the weaknesses or gaps in certain areas can act as a barrier to our career development. Hence, along with focusing on the strengths, we need to focus on the weaknesses or gaps that are barriers or career development. My key strengths are communication skills, team working skills, analytical skills, and adaptability. Communication skills are crucial for any kind of job role, especially for customer service management. Effective communication skills are important for my career as I will work in customer service management, where I have to communicate with the customers on a regular basis. Along with that, effective communication is also important while working in teams. The adaptability of the work environment is another of my strength, which helps me to adapt to my surrounding environment quickly. While working in an organization and in teams, adaptability is important because understanding the ideas and thoughts of other are important. Along with adapting to the team environment, adapting to the work environment is also important. My adaptability skill will help me to cope quickly up with the work environment and help me to work with the team members effectively.

Team working skill is another of my strength, which will help me to achieve both personal and team goals. While working in teams, an individual cannot only think about the personal goal but also have to think about the overall goal of the team. There are severe problem may occur while working in the team such a conflict or time management. My key strengths need to be improved more for developing my career. I still lag in leadership skills that may create a gap in my professional development. Leadership skills are crucial for my long-term career goal, as I have to work as a team leader and lead the team members to achieve the overall goals of the team. The key thing that I lack in leadership skill is delegation of tasks and organization of tasks, which are important for a leader. Self-criticism is another of my weaknesses that need to be changed. Self-criticism mainly happens because of a lack of confidence in the works that I have done. I tend to be criticized about my work very often; however, criticizing my own work is a good thing that enhances self-analysis, but over criticizing is not good. At times, I complete a project or a task, most of the time, I feel that there is certainly lacking the final outcome, which seems quite a dissatisfaction.

Even if my work or project receives a positive response from others, I still overthink about the work what I could add to the project that will make the project better. The thing mainly happens because of overthinking, which leads to ultimate dissatisfaction with the outcomes. While working in teams, I have to take care of this thing as the teamwork will not only base on my own work but will be based on the work of others. Hence, I need to be very particular about my thoughts. Currently, I am working on it by enhancing my analytical skills. It is a better way that can help me to be more rational about what I think and what I do. Enhancing my analytical skill will help me to make adequate decisions before starting work or a project, so the ending of the project will be satisfactory. Woking on the gaps in development and improvement in my strengths will help me to enhance my skills, and my work performance will be better as expected.

Conclusion
Based on the above identification and suitability of my target position, it can be said that I need to focus on my skills, especially my leadership skill, analytical skills, and self-confidence. The work experience is a major factor that will lead my career towards the expected path. The work experience that I will gain during working in customer service management will increase my chance to become a quality assurance manager. The key actions that I need to take for better building my career development are the following:

1. Certification course on quality assurance, which will develop my knowledge about customer service quality.
2. Work experience in customer service management in a retail organization, which will help me enhance my skills related to customer service and a step towards my future career planning.

3. For my leadership skills, I will continue an online course for leadership for 4-6 months, which will help me to gain knowledge and apply the knowledge in a practical context.

4. To improve my communication and team working skills, I will follow the guides of related books, articles, and online sources because it is the more convenient and time-saving way. As communication and team working skills are my strengths, so there is no need for additional courses, the regular reading from online sources is effective.

The work experience will be most beneficial for my professional development as it will enhance my skills in a better way, and my work experience will also act as a positive factor for my career growth.

References
Bhaskaran, M. (2018). Getting Singapore in shape: Economic challenges and how to meet them. Retrieved from website: https://www.lowyinstitute.org/sites/default/files/Manu%20Bhaskaran_Getting%20Singapore%20in%20shape_WEB_2.pdf

Michaelpage.com.sg. (2021). 7 trends impacting Singapore’s job outlook. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from Michael Page website: https://www.michaelpage.com.sg/advice/market-insights/market-updates/7-trends-impacting-singapore-s-job-outlook Mycareersfuture.gov.sg. (2018, October 10). Key Things Singapore Employers Look Out For When Hiring. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from MyCareersFuture website: https://content.mycareersfuture.gov.sg/key-things-singapore-employers-look-hiring/

Smith, J. (2019). Work in Singapore | Prospects.ac.uk. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from www.prospects.ac.uk website: https://www.prospects.ac.uk/jobs-and-work-experience/working-abroad/work-in-singapore

Tat, H., & Toh, R. (2014). Conditions of Work and employment series no. 48 INWORK Growth with equity in Singapore: Challenges and prospects. Retrieved from website: https://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---ed_protect/---protrav/---travail/documents/publication/wcms_244819.pdf

Weligamage, S. (2021). (PDF) Graduates’ Employability Skills: Evidence from Literature Review. Retrieved April 29, 2021, from ResearchGate website: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/266014502_Graduates

Appendices
Career plan

Target job role: Quality assurance manager
Initial planning: Work experience in customer service management.

Initial job role: Customer service representative
Key areas needs to focus: communication skill, team working, leadership, analytical skill.

Actions that will be undertaken:
1. Certification course on quality assurance.
2. Work experience in customer service management in a retail organization.
3. Online course for leadership for 4-6 months.
4. Guides of related books, articles, and online sources.

CV
Name:
Objectives:

  • To secure a challenging position in the organization and to expand my knowledge, skills, and learnings.
  • To secure growing career opportunities and to utilize my skills, training for successful achievement of goals.
  • To make a significant contribution to the company while working.
    Academic qualification: Diploma, specializing in customer service.
  • Key skills: computer skills, communication skills, team working, adaptability.
    Language known:
    Hobbies: Traveling, playing tennis, swimming.
    Address:
    Email-ID:
    Mobile no:

    Competency based questions
    1. Describe a situation, in which you contributed as a team members or your experience in team work?

    Answer: In my group’s projects, I contributed as team members, where I learned to coordinate with other team members, and helping each other and working on the overall goal of the team rather than only focusing on individual goal. While working in teams help me a lot to learn about how to work in teams, time management and coordination.

    2. Describe a situation when you made difficult decisions and made choice based on rationally?
    Answer: The stream selection is one of most difficult situation, in which I made a decision to go with customer service as my specialization. I chose rational decision making that is based on further career opportunity and my interest in the field.

    3. What are the approaches you made to enhance your communication skills/ or planning to enhance in future?
    Answer: The key approaches I had undertaken are regular reading of newspaper, online articles, communication with my friends and online learning lessons.

    4. Describe a situation/ situations where you acted whole responsible for a task completion?
    Answer: The individual projects are the best example, in which I was solely responsible to complete the tasks on time.

    5. Mention about a situation when you used the technical skills and helped you a lot to achieve good results?
    Answer: The technical skills helped me lot to complete my projects with more specification.

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