HR’s Guide to Singapore Hiring

According to a recent survey, 75% of employers admitted to hiring the wrong person, costing them nearly $17,000 on average. These bad hires failed to deliver quality work, had a negative attitude, or misrepresented their abilities. 

Additionally, there are costly penalties for violating employment laws and regulations, many of which are not commonly known. Hiring in Singapore comes with many rules and regulations, especially if you are wondering how to hire foreign worker in Singapore. 

This article aims to explore how to hire the right employees in Singapore to enhance productivity and retain them for longer durations.

Laying the Groundwork for Hiring in Singapore

hiring in Singapore

Before we move on to the stages of hiring in Singapore, let’s lay the groundwork covering the legal frameworks, competitor analysis, and sourcing the right talent. 

Here are certain legal frameworks you need to keep in mind when hiring in Singapore to ensure compliance and avoid penalties. 

Employment Act

The Employment Act is Singapore’s main labor law, outlining the terms and conditions for all employees. By familiarizing themselves with this act, employers can understand their obligations, ensuring compliance and avoiding legal issues when hiring in Singapore.

The act covers minimum wages, working hours, annual leave entitlements, and termination procedures. It also outlines specific responsibilities towards employees, including maintaining a safe working environment, upholding fair employment practices, and ensuring timely salary disbursements. Adhering to these regulations will keep your employees engaged and your organization safe from legal issues. 

Foreign Manpower Act

If you are a business in Singapore hiring foreigners, understanding the Foreign Manpower Act is crucial. This law outlines the responsibilities, offenses, and penalties related to hiring in Singapore. 

For example, foreign employees are required to have an employment pass. Hiring without one can result in fines from S$5,000 to S$30,000 or up to one year of imprisonment. 

The Act also covers salary, working hours, public holidays, and leave for foreign employees. Therefore, it’s crucial to review the Act thoroughly before hiring foreign workers to comply with regulations.

Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA)

Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA) sets rules for how personal information can be collected, used, and shared. Organizations must ask for permission before gathering or using personal details, which should be used for specific, valid purposes with consent.

Employees have the right to know why their data is used, access their information, and request corrections. Organizations are responsible for safeguarding data from unauthorized access or misuse. Non-compliance can lead to fines up to S$1 million.

Relevant read: 5 Ways Employee Database Software Elevates Your Business

Work Injury Compensation Act (WICA)

The Work Injury Compensation Act (WICA) in Singapore establishes a framework for compensating employees for work-related injuries or illnesses, regardless of fault. 

Under the act’s provisions, employers are mandated to compensate affected employees to cover medical expenses, loss of earnings, and permanent incapacity arising from work-related incidents. Employers must notify the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and their insurer of accidents resulting in more than three days of medical leave, hospitalization, serious injury, or death. 

As for compensation, employees can file claims with their employer or the employer’s insurer. Employers are responsible for processing these claims and providing compensation per the WICA.

Assessing the market 

When hiring in Singapore, it’s essential to stay informed about your competitors’ activities. Here’s how:


It’s vital to grasp how competitors attract, recruit, and retain talent to stay ahead in the market, whether it is businesses in Singapore hiring foreigners or locals. Begin by researching their websites, job postings, and social media profiles to uncover the roles they’re advertising, preferred skills, and employee benefits. Dive into their social media presence, noting recruitment posts, testimonials, and company culture insights. 

Additionally, analyze employee reviews on platforms like Glassdoor and Indeed when hiring in Singapore. These insights enable you to refine your recruitment strategies for better competitiveness.

Additional reading: Recruitment Fees Explained: Types of Structures You Can Expect

Cultural nuances

Hiring in Singapore requires an understanding of diverse cultural preferences and norms to tailor job descriptions effectively. For instance, Singapore’s workforce includes individuals from various ethnicities, religions, and cultural backgrounds, making it important to understand the nuances of each.

This aspect becomes even more important as businesses in Singapore hiring foreigners rise. In such scenarios, employers who understand cultural nuances can implement recruitment strategies that celebrate diversity, attract candidates from different cultural backgrounds, and promote a sense of belonging within the organization. 

Cost of living 

Knowing the cost of living in particular locations is essential for setting an appropriate salary budget for your employees. Conducting salary benchmarking studies helps compare compensation packages with industry standards and local market rates. 

Providing competitive salaries is crucial for attracting and retaining top talent in the organization. The cost of living in locations like Singapore is steadily increasing. Here’s a brief overview of the cost of living as of March 2024 for your reference. 

Sourcing and attracting talents

Hiring in Singapore becomes easier when you are aware of the best sources of attracting talent in your organization. If you are wondering how to hire foreign workers in Singapore and local workers who are efficient with their jobs, here are some best sources: 

Local universities and institutions

According to Statista, Singapore recorded one of the highest unemployment rates compared to other countries in the Asia-Pacific region. In such a situation, partnering with local universities and institutions allows employers to connect with fresh graduates and entry-level talent. Institutions often offer specialized programs and courses tailored to specific industries or fields of study.  

You can leverage these programs to recruit candidates with specialized skills, knowledge, and expertise that align with your hiring needs. Participating in career fairs, hosting recruitment events, or offering internships can help you attract promising candidates eager to kick-start their careers. 

Professional networking 

Attending industry events, conferences, seminars, and workshops allows you to meet new people and expand your network. Online platforms like LinkedIn also facilitate networking by connecting professionals globally and enabling you to join industry-specific  groups and discussions. 

For instance, you can join the Executives Global Network on Linkedin when hiring in Singapore. This network conducts frequent meetings and events that help build a professional network focused on learning and connecting. 

Networking is more than just collecting business cards or forming superficial connections. It allows employers to reach a broader pool of potential candidates beyond traditional recruitment channels when hiring in Singapore. By connecting with professionals in their industry or related fields, employers can access passive candidates who might not be actively job hunting but possess the desired skills and experience.

Employer branding 

Your organization’s reputation in the eyes of the outside world and potential candidates is crucial, especially when it comes down to how to hire foreign worker in Singapore. A strong employer brand focuses on creating a solid impression, essential for turning passive job seekers into active candidates when hiring in Singapore. Many companies overlook this aspect and make mistakes that can harm their reputation.

Focus on cultivating a positive reputation that reflects your company values, making it an attractive employer. Potential candidates are drawn to companies known for treating employees well, offering competitive salaries and benefits, and creating a supportive work environment. 

Learn more: Top 5 AI Tools for Recruitment

Employment pass system

The Employment Pass (EP) system is a work visa scheme designed to smoothen the process for organizations in Singapore hiring foreigners. It’s designed for foreign professionals including managers, executives, and specialists. It allows them to live and work in Singapore for a set period, typically one to two years, with the option to renew. 

  • Eligibility: Candidates must meet a two-stage eligibility framework to qualify for EP applications. They need to earn an EP-qualifying salary, which is $S5,000 for most sectors and S$5,500 for the financial services sector. Additionally, they must pass the complementarity assessment framework (COMPASS) and score at least 40 points based on salary, qualifications, diversity, and support for local employment.
  • Minimum salary requirements: The Singaporean government sets minimum salary thresholds for different Employment Pass categories. These thresholds are regularly reviewed to ensure competitive salaries based on skills and experience. 
  • Validity period: Employment Passes are typically issued for one to two years, depending on qualifications, job role, and employer’s track record. Renewal is subject to continued employment and meeting eligibility criteria.
  • Employer sponsorship: An Employment Pass application must be sponsored by a registered Singaporean employer. Employers are responsible for submitting EP applications and ensuring compliance with immigration regulations.

Key Stages of Hiring in Singapore

hiring in Singapore

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s explore the three key stages of hiring in Singapore: 

1. Compliance

HR professionals in Singapore must comply with the Employment Act as mentioned previously. They also need to ensure compliance with Singapore’s work permit and visa requirements for foreign hires. Different types of work passes, such as EP and S Passes, have specific eligibility criteria and application processes.

Employee benefits, such as healthcare coverage, CPF contributions, and statutory leave, should comply with Singaporean regulations. It’s important to keep up with these laws as they are regularly updated.

Fair employment practices must be followed to prevent discrimination based on race, gender, religion, or nationality. Additionally, maintaining accurate records of all hiring-related documents, including job descriptions, resumes, interview notes, and employment contracts, is essential for showcasing compliance with legal requirements and facilitating audits if necessary.

2. Interviewing

During a screening interview when hiring in Singapore, HR professionals review candidates’ resumes and prepare questions tailored to the role’s requirements. Instead of asking typical questions, consider posing situational inquiries that prompt examples of problem-solving, teamwork, and leadership qualities. For instance, you can ask them these questions: 

  • Tell me about a time when you had to make a difficult decision under pressure. How did you weigh the options and arrive at a solution?
  • Can you share an example of a conflict you encountered while working in a team? How did you handle it, and what was the outcome?
  • Have you ever taken on a leadership role in a project or team? Can you describe the situation, your approach to leadership, and the results achieved?
  • What aspects of our company culture resonate most with you, and why? How do you envision contributing to and thriving within our culture?
  • In your opinion, what are the most important cultural aspects of a workplace? How do you ensure cultural alignment and harmony within a team or organization?

Your questions should motivate candidates to share stories that demonstrate the skills you are seeking. Candidates should not only match the skill-based aspects of the job but also align with the company’s values, culture, and work environment.

Read next: Build Impactful Teams: 10 Google Interview Questions to Inspire Your Hiring Process

3. Offer letter and contracts

When hiring in Singapore, it is important to draft a comprehensive offer letter outlining the job title, salary, benefits, start date, and any contingencies. Include clear instructions for accepting the offer. 

Craft an employment contract that complies with Singaporean laws and reflects the agreed-upon terms, covering probationary periods, notice periods, termination conditions, and confidentiality agreements. 

Have legal counsel review offer letters and contracts to ensure compliance with relevant regulations and mitigate legal risks. 

Once everything looks good, communicate offer details clearly and promptly, allowing room for negotiation within reasonable boundaries. Maintain transparency throughout the process to build trust with the candidate.

Navigating Post Hiring in Singapore

After successfully hiring in Singapore, HR professionals must focus on effective onboarding and ongoing compliance for a smooth transition and adherence to legal requirements:

1. Onboarding

When it comes to how to welcome new employees, it’s all about making them feel like part of the family from the get-go by delivering the best onboarding experience. Start by introducing them to the company culture, values, and key team members. Provide thorough training on essential tools, systems, and processes relevant to their role to ensure they can contribute effectively from the start. 

To prevent new employees from feeling left out or isolated, pairing them with a mentor or buddy can facilitate integration into the team and provide ongoing support. Encourage open communication and feedback to address any questions or concerns they may have. Celebrate their successes and milestones to foster a sense of belonging within the organization.

Additional resource: Download our free Onboarding Kit!

2. Ongoing compliance

Maintaining compliance post-hiring in Singapore requires staying updated with labor laws and regulations. Start  by establishing clear policies and procedures that align with local legislation, covering areas like employee contracts, working hours, leave entitlements, and workplace safety. Regular audits and reviews of these policies help identify any gaps or updates needed. 

Providing continuous training and education on compliance for employees and managers is also critical to maintaining adherence to regulations. Staying connected with legal experts or consultants who specialize in Singaporean labor laws can provide additional support in navigating any compliance challenges that may arise. 

For a detailed guide on compliance areas to monitor, refer to our 2024 HR compliance checklist!

Achieving Strategic Advantage for Singapore Talent Acquisition

Navigating the complexities of hiring in Singapore requires a thorough understanding of the country’s labor laws and regulations. By following best practices and staying updated with legal requirements, HR professionals can ensure a smooth and compliant hiring process. 

Omni helps you streamline and automate your process of hiring in Singapore, enabling you to attract, screen, and hire the best talent. Our platform allows you to sync all candidate applications in one place and easily collaborate with hiring managers to schedule interviews, send impactful communications, and analyze interview feedback.

With Omni’s recruitment workflows, you can send offers or rejections with just a few clicks, coordinate candidate interviews, share candidate feedback among management, and swiftly transition successful candidates into the onboarding process to ensure top performance and engagement.

Omni manages and automates time-consuming manual tasks to allow you and your recruitment team to focus on what’s really important: crafting impactful interview questions, establishing parameters to interpret responses, and ultimately hiring award-winning candidates.

Book a demo with our team today to learn more about how Omni can help revolutionize your Singapore hiring process.

Hiring Freeze: Reasons, Impacts, and How to Respond

A hiring freeze is a valuable indicator of a country’s market and can provide valuable insights into its economic conditions. According to CNBC, 20% of companies in Asia Pacific implemented hiring freezes in 2022, with 40% of them only recruiting for essential positions.

In this guide, we will explore the reasons and impacts of hiring freezes. We also provide strategies to help HR leaders navigate them, ensuring your business remains stable and financially secure.

What is a Hiring Freeze?

Hiring freezes are periods where companies refrain from hiring new workers. These freezes, which can be temporary or indefinite, are typically implemented to reduce costs. During a hiring freeze, companies do not fill vacancies left by departing employees and do not create new positions.

It’s worth noting that a hiring freeze usually impacts non-essential positions. In other words, companies may still hire employees for essential roles, work with freelancers, or hire part-time workers if it is cost effective.

By doing so, the critical business functions such as research, development, production, and sales can continue uninterrupted. Disrupting these core operations could lead to a decrease in revenue, which goes against the purpose of implementing a hiring freeze. 

So, the question is – why would companies resort to such measures?

Hiring freezes are often announced in response to financial difficulties, as a proactive measure to prevent financial strain, or as a response to economic slowdowns, recessions, overcapacity, and other market circumstances.

By minimizing operational and payroll costs during times of financial hardship, companies can avoid a more drastic measure for cutting costs such as layoffs and mass firings. 

Reasons for Companies to Implement Hiring Freeze

hiring freeze

As an employer, understanding the reasons for hiring freezes helps you decide when to impose and lift them.

Market changes

Market conditions may change, decreasing revenue and limiting profitability. As such, they might drive even the most successful businesses to cut costs via hiring freezes. Companies may choose to implement a hiring freeze if they anticipate an industry shift or in response to unexpected changes in market conditions. 

For instance, a significant increase in paper costs could impact the publishing industry, forcing a publishing house to implement a temporary hiring freeze due to financial constraints. 

Global crisis

A global crisis can have repercussions on businesses worldwide, leading even successful companies to implement hiring freezes. During these times, companies might halt non-essential recruitment globally while monitoring global trends, maintaining this measure until an effective crisis response plan is in place. 

For example, consider the impact of disease outbreaks, such as the COVID 19 pandemic, which significantly minimized domestic consumption and purchasing power. Coupled with containment measures, this resulted in a worldwide crisis.

Many governments and organizations, including the Philippines government, with its  ‘Bayanihan to Heal as One Act’, implemented crisis response plans. However, despite these efforts, many are still facing challenges. As a result, it is unsurprising that many companies implemented hiring freezes. 

According to the Business Inquirer survey, over 60% of responses in the Philippines anticipated negative business impacts from the pandemic, with half reporting that they have already implemented hiring freezes.

Budget concerns

Suppose you notice that your company’s budget is insufficient to cover additional salaries, benefits, and recruitment costs, and other hidden costs. In that case, you may decide to temporarily halt recruitment until the company achieves better financial stability. 

Implementing a hiring freeze allows companies to avoid laying off current employees and prevents budget deficits or overspending issues. To exemplify, you might find that the total cost of the hiring process exceeds your quarterly employee salary budget, it may be beneficial to impose a hiring freeze until the start of the new quarter or until the balance sheet is balanced.

Read more: The Cost of Recruitment: HR’s Guide to Creating, Tracking and Implementing a Salary Budget

Potential liquidity concerns

Liquid assets are assets easily convertible to cash, including cash, marketable securities, and market instruments. These assets are crucial for meeting short-term obligations such as wages and vendor bills.

If you’re worried about insufficient liquid assets, review your company’s liquidity ratios for clarity. If the ratios confirm your concerns, consider allocating a portion of your salary budget to finance your current assets. Implementing hiring freezes can also serve as effective short-term solutions, but this should be viewed as a last resort.

Impending layoffs

As mentioned previously, implementing hiring freezes can help avoid drastic measures such as layoffs due to financial constraints. This approach is a key strategy for maintaining your company’s stability, providing much needed job security for your current employees during a challenging time. 

Picture this: your company faces some financial turmoil, leading to widespread anxiety among employees who fear potential job losses. By communicating that no layoffs will occur and that the freeze only applies to non-essential roles, you can ease their concerns. This approach is likely to increase their willingness to adapt to necessary structural changes, enhance their loyalty to the company, and reduce attrition rates.

Hiring Freeze Impacts

Understanding the impact of hiring freezes provides a multidimensional understanding of the situation and helps you prepare a robust change management strategy. Implementing hiring freezes have dual impacts, affecting both employees and companies.

Impact on employees

Upon announcement, hiring freezes provide employees with the job security they seek. Despite the company’s financial challenges, employees feel reassured knowing the company’s commitment to retaining them, thereby enhancing company loyalty. 

However, during a hiring freeze, some business responsibilities may be left unaddressed due to departing employees, with no plans to replace them. Instead, the additional workload is distributed among existing employees, potentially requiring them to work longer hours, which could lead to employee burnout

This increased workload underscores the importance of viewing hiring freezes as a temporary measure. It’s crucial to ensure that tasks allocated to employees are manageable and that they are fairly compensated based on their performance and efforts. 

Keeping the hiring freeze temporary is especially important considering the trend of job hopping among Gen Z and millennials, known as the “Great Reshuffle”. By keeping the freeze short-term, you can avoid decreases in employee performance, morale, and satisfaction, as well as increasing retention rates. Meanwhile, it’s essential to develop a more sustainable, long-term budgeting strategy

Impact on companies

As mentioned previously, prolonged hiring freezes can negatively impact overall performance and profitability, leading to increased turnover rates.

Additionally, a hiring freeze can signal financial difficulties to creditors and other companies, potentially impacting the company’s reputation and partnerships. 

During hiring freezes, managers may hesitate to address performance issues, fearing that employees will quit and not be replaced, further worsening the problem. Alternatives such as freelancing and outsourcing can be beneficial in the short-term but will be costly and counterproductive when trying to reduce operational costs. 

Temporary hiring freezes can help mitigate these consequences and even offer benefits. Firstly, they provide financial stability by reducing costs associated with salaries, onboarding process, benefits, and training, aiding in restoring financial stability. 

Secondly, a hiring freeze can enhance efficiency by encouraging management to restructure, train, and invest in current employees, optimizing internal talent and boosting morale. They also save time and energy by streamlining processes without the need for onboarding and welcoming new employees.

Lastly, temporary freezes allow for reflection on business goals and operations, as managers have the opportunity to assess current strategies and identify growth opportunities. This period of reflection can lead to revised plans, policies, and procedures, ultimately improving the company’s long-term outlook. 

3 Ways HR Can Respond and Handle Hiring Freeze

hiring freeze

1. Be proactive and transparent

Ensuring clear communication of the hiring freeze to your employees is crucial. Emphasize that their jobs are secure and that additional tasks are temporary. Utilize open communication channels, and 1-on-1 meetings to encourage cooperation. 

Prepare strategies to mitigate potential increase in performance gaps and decrease in employee engagement during the freeze. Stay interviews can be valuable tools. 

While questions asked during exit interviews help you understand why an employee is leaving, stay interviews tend to be more proactive. They involve speaking with current employees to understand why they choose to remain with the company. This insight into their values, perspectives, and priorities can inform the development of a targeted retention strategy. 

Finally, inform any promising candidates who were in the interview process about the freeze. Maintaining contact and providing regular updates can help nurture these relationships and can be beneficial for when the freeze is lifted. 

2. Support internal transfers

Internal job transfers occur when existing employees take on new roles within the company. Compared to external hiring, they require less time for hiring, onboarding, and training, making them a more cost effective option. 

Furthermore, internal transfers boost employee motivation by highlighting the opportunities for growth within the company. This aids in retaining high quality employees during hiring freezes. 

Most importantly, internal transfers allow you to streamline business processes and utilize employees’ skills and talents effectively. This minimizes stress and additional tasks for employees during the hiring freeze, preventing employee burnout. 

3. Maintain employee engagement

Given that hiring freezes can increase the workload of existing employees, there is a risk of reduced moral and employee engagement. Therefore, it is crucial to invest in employee engagement during a hiring freeze using various strategies. 

Need some inspiration? Download our 2024 HR Calendar for engagement ideas!

According to Josephine Lanzarone, vice president of marketing, Asia Pacific, Pluralsight, “If there is no incentive for employees to remain in an organization, employers will be hard-tasked to sell-in roles to prospective talent in the first place—leaving or expanding gaps in teams and compounding the challenges they are tasked with addressing.”

She adds, “Much of what drives employee satisfaction, and therefore retention, benefits the organization itself. For example, 65% of all skilled professionals rate learning and developing new skills as the most important priority for them.”

Providing current employees with resources, coaching, and training, such as cross-training, which is cost effective, can help them handle their additional responsibilities. It is unwise to assume that employees will leave the organization after upskilling. By investing in their future, employees are more likely to feel engaged and remain with the organization. 

Another effective method of maintaining engagement levels during a hiring freeze is through active listening. Making employees feel heard through employee satisfaction surveys and performance conversations and promptly addressing their concerns demonstrates your commitment to their satisfaction.

Learn more: 20 Strategic Employee Engagement Survey Questions

Finally, employee recognition and acknowledgement are essential, particularly when employees are putting in extra effort during hiring freezes. Utilize group channels, recognition walls, and weekly meetings to acknowledge outstanding individuals. Promote deserving employees and highlight the significance of the company’s work to help employees understand their role in the bigger picture and recognize the value of their contributions. 

Strategic Workforce Management with Omni 

While hiring freezes present challenges such as increased workload and potential morale issues, they also offer benefits like cost savings and the opportunity to optimize current talent. 

HR professionals play a crucial role in navigating these challenges, ensuring effective communication, employee engagement, and support for employees. Omni makes it easy for People leaders to manage workforce dynamics during hiring freezes through one, automated platform.

With Omni, HR professionals can leverage automation and expert created templates to build seamless processes to support each stage of the employee lifecycle, and manage each function in a centralized, easy-to-use platform. Omni’s data analysis and smart-reports allow you to derive real-time, actionable insights on your employee experience so you can build an award winning culture of growth, innovation, and engagement even during periods of hiring freeze.

Book a demo with our team today to learn more about how Omni can help uncover the insights you need to build a highly engaged workforce.

Paying your employees is one of the most important expenses your company incurs. However, it’s not always as straightforward as paying out a base salary. You need to consider the cost of recruitment, variable pay, deductions and fluctuations in market rate so your recruitment strategies can remain competitive.

This is where a detailed salary budget comes in. This strategic outline helps account for all the expenses associated with maintaining (and growing) your workforce. It’s an essential part of any organization’s roadmap, and needs to be carefully considered with present expenses and future opportunities balanced together.

Here’s everything you need to know about the cost of recruitment, tracking and implementing a salary budget, and what technology you can lean on to help the process.

What is a Salary Budget?

Before we dive right into the guide, let’s get to know the basics of a salary budget. For HR professionals, a salary budget serves as the foundational financial plan outlining how much you expect to spend on employee compensation for a defined period (often aligning with the fiscal year). This budget outlines how your organization’s financial resources dedicated to the cost of recruitment, salaries, wages, bonuses, and other employee-related expenses will be spent.

Key components of a salary budget

Base salaries: These are the fixed amount of money allocated for roles at your organization, and represent the core of employee compensation.

Variable pay: This deals with bonuses, incentives, commissions, and any other form of performance-based pay that may vary based on individual or team achievements.

Benefits and perquisites: In addition to direct monetary compensation, a salary budget often includes provisions for employee benefits such as health insurance, retirement contributions, and other perks.

Payroll taxes: Tax-based deductions also need to be considered. These expenses related to employer-paid taxes are critical to consider when setting your overall salary budget.

Salary adjustments: You’ll need to account for periodic adjustments, whether they’re cost-of-living increases, merit-based raises, or adjustments to remain competitive in the job market.

A well-defined salary budget is one of the single-most important steps your HR department can take each year. Accounting for predictable costs while leaving room for cost of recruitment and flexibility will help you attract and retain talent, ensuring everyone is adequately compensated and employee satisfaction.

Learn more: Recruitment Fees Explained: Types of Structures You Can Expect

Why is Having a Salary Budget Important?

As mentioned, one of the biggest expenses for an organization is paying the salaries of its employees. Ensuring fair compensation fosters an engaged and motivated workforce. Thus, establishing a salary budget is crucial. Delve deeper into the significance of a salary budget with the following reasons: 

Financial Control and Predictability

  • Financial stability: A salary budget provides a structured framework for allocating resources, helping establish stability in your organization’s financial landscape. It also allows for better control over spending related to employee compensation.
  • Budget predictability: Having a well-defined salary budget allows your organization to predict and plan for labor costs, which minimizes financial surprises and helps with financial forecasting.

Talent attraction and retention

  • Competitive compensation: A well-crafted salary budget guarantees that your organization remains competitive in the job market. It enables you to attract top-tier talent by offering salaries and benefits that meet industry standards, and appeal to high-value candidates.
  • Retention strategies: This involves allocating funds within your organization for salary adjustments, bonuses and benefits aimed at enhancing employee satisfaction and employee retention. Consequently, investing in such expenditures fosters organizational continuity, reduces turnover rates, and mitigates recruitment costs associated with talent replacement.

Performance alignment

  • Linking performance to compensation: A salary budget serves as the mechanism which links individual and team performance to compensation. This encourages employees to strive for excellence, knowing that their efforts are recognized and rewarded.
  • Merit-based adjustments: The budget allows for performance-based salary adjustments, acknowledging and incentivizing high-performing members of your team, contributing to a performance-driven company culture within your organization.

Strategic Workforce Planning

  • Resource allocation: Your organization can strategically allocate resources based on its business priorities. For example, a salary budget could include provisions for targeted hires or additional training to address specific skill gaps within your workforce.
  • Long-term planning: It also aids in long-term workforce planning by considering factors such as succession planning, skill development, and workforce expansion.

Cost Management and Compliance

  • Cost containment: By defining and managing your labor costs, a salary budget helps your organization manage its overall budget effectively and accurately. It also allows for adjustments in response to changing financial circumstances, such as a market downturn.
  • Compliance with regulations: Your salary budget helps maintain compliance with labor laws and regulations related to compensation (such as minimum wage or overtime pay) preventing any legal issues that could arise if there were salary disputes.

Organizational Transparency and Employee Morale

  • Transparency: A clear and communicated salary budget fosters transparency in the organization. Employees are aware of the criteria for salary adjustments and bonus allocations, promoting a sense of fairness.
  • Morale boost: Knowing that the organization has a structured approach to compensation increases employee engagement and morale. It establishes a sense of trust and fairness in the employer-employee relationship.

In short, a salary budget is essential for proficient financial management, talent strategy, and overall success, spanning short and long-term objectives. It ensures alignment of financial resources with strategic goals, accounts for the cost of recruitment, and cultivates a harmonious and prosperous work environment.

salary budget

What to Consider When Creating a Salary Budget?

Developing a comprehensive salary budget requires a careful and detail-oriented approach, particularly when approaching elements that directly impact your organization’s success and your employee well-being and financial security (like the cost of recruitment). Let’s take a closer look at the key aspects to focus on when crafting a salary budget.

Market research and industry standards

When approaching your salary budget creation, begin by taking a deep dive into market research in order to grasp the current industry standards and salary benchmarks. Look into compensation surveys, industry reports, cost of recruitment standards, and relevant market trends. This data should form your foundation for determining competitive and attractive salary ranges that resonate with the broader market.

Analyzing competitor salary structures and understanding the average compensation for similar roles in the industry will provide valuable insights, and give you a keener understanding of the cost of recruitment you can expect. This step also ensures that your organization remains competitive and will attract top talent.

Organizational Needs and Priorities

Aligning the salary budget with your organizational needs and priorities should be your top priority. Consider the strategic objectives and overarching goals of your company, and consider—if there are imminent plans for growth, allocate budget resources accordingly, making sure that the salary budget supports these strategic initiatives.

This step involves a careful consideration of your organization’s mission and vision, company values, and strategic plans. For example, if its focus is on innovation, the salary budget might need to account for attracting specialized talent in cutting-edge fields, which could potentially increase the overall cost of recruitment.

Benefits and Perks

Beyond basic salary figures, your overall compensation packages probably include perks and benefits. Delve into structuring a comprehensive benefits plan, including health insurance, retirement contributions, and additional perks. The aim with this step is to create an enticing package that goes beyond monetary considerations.

Consider the specific needs and preferences of your workforce. For example, younger demographics like Gen Z and Gen Alpha might place a higher value on professional development opportunities, while a more senior team member might prioritize retirement benefits.

Retention and Talent Acquisition

A strategic salary budget should address both talent retention and the cost of recruitment. Identify important positions for targeted retention efforts and allocate resources for competitive compensation packages. At the same time, set aside budgetary provisions for attracting new talent, especially if there are plans for expanding the workforce.

You’ll need to consider the turnover rates for key positions and understand the cost of losing valuable talent. A budget that recognizes and rewards loyalty while attracting new talents is essential for maintaining a dynamic and resilient team.

By taking a close look at aspects such as market research, organizational needs, benefits, and talent strategies, your organization can develop a salary budget that not only meets industry standards but also supports the attainment of its unique objectives and enhances workforce dynamics. 

Useful Tools for Preparing and Tracking Your Salary Budget

Considering the significance of a salary budget, it requires meticulous attention to detail. However, this complexity can be significantly simplified with the aid of tools and technologies accessible to HR professionals. Your team can utilize various software solutions to improve accuracy, efficiency and overall ease in managing your salary budget. Here are some useful tools for the task: 

HRIS (Human Resources Information System)

An HRIS is a fully integrated system that facilitates the management of employee data, including payroll and compensation information. It automates many different HR processes, helping you communicate seamlessly between different HR functions. HRIS tools provide a centralized platform for payroll, making budget preparation (like predicting the cost of recruitment) and tracking a much more simplified task.

Budgeting software

Dedicated budgeting software offers robust features specifically designed for financial planning and analysis. These tools often include tools for salary budgeting, allowing your team to allocate funds for the cost of recruitment, set salary structures, and monitor expenditures. Modern HR budgeting software can also provide forecasting capabilities for future budget cycles.

Microsoft Excel

While considered traditional, Microsoft Excel remains a versatile and extensively utilized tool for budgeting functions in many businesses. While not as specialized as dedicated HRIS or budgeting software, Microsoft Excel allows HR professionals to create detailed and customizable salary budget templates. It’s also particularly useful for small to medium-sized businesses that may not require an extensive software solution (or lack the budget for one).

Compensation benchmarking tools

Compensation benchmarking tools can help your organization compare its salary structure against industry standards and competitors. These tools provide valuable insights into the cost of recruitment for specific roles, enabling your team to make data-driven decisions when preparing your salary budget. Some tools also offer real-time updates on market trends, helping you stay ahead of the game and make changes to stay competitive.

Selecting the right combination of tools depends on the unique needs and scale of your organization. If you work for a larger enterprise, you might benefit from a comprehensive HRIS and budgeting software solutions. If you’re a smaller business, you may find Microsoft Excel and specialized compensation benchmarking tools to be cost-effective alternatives. Regardless of the size of your organization, integrating technology into the salary budgeting process maximizes precision, agility, and assists with strategic decision-making.

Read next: Tools and Tips for Building an HR Budget

Unlock Smart Salary Budgeting with Omni

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Affordable, functional, and suitable for modern growing businesses— Omni is the payroll provider that your business can rely on when creating your salary budget. Our comprehensive payroll solution is specifically crafted to meet the unique requirements of your business, regardless of your geographical location. 

With product features like local currency support, automated tax calculations, and instant payroll reports, HR teams can simplify their salary budgeting process while ensuring adherence to regulatory standards. What’s more, Omni provides clear and timely insights into your organization’s spending, helping you build and audit your salary budget backed by real data.

Read how Unravel Carbon Maximizes Annual Savings with Omni

If you’re ready to take your salary budget implementation to the next level, book a demo with us today. We’ll walk you through the platform’s features and demonstrate how Omni can transform your processes, saving you time, reducing administrative burden, and enhancing overall efficiency for your team.

Recruitment Fees Explained: Types of Structures You Can Expect

Recruitment comes with a price tag, especially when partnering with agencies or headhunting firms. However, not all recruitment fees are created equal, and there are different structures depending on the type of service you decide to go with.

As such, HR teams and recruiters have to carefully manage these costs, considering the ROI and value that they bring to the organization. This doesn’t mean that you should always opt for the lowest cost option, but rather understand the different structures and determine which one is most suitable for your organization’s needs. 

If you’re not sure where to begin, or how to make sense of the various recruitment fees available, read on to learn more about the various types of recruitment fee structures you can expect.

What Are Recruitment Fees?

Recruitment fees are costs that organizations pay to recruitment agencies or headhunting firms for their services in finding and hiring potential candidates for employment. These services can include sourcing, screening, interviewing, and presenting suitable job candidates to organizations.

Recruitment fees can be either a one-time fee or an ongoing payment, depending on the type of structure that has been agreed upon between your organization and the recruitment agency.

Recruitment Fees: Types of Structures

recruitment fees

Since the different recruitment fee structures inform service expectations, it’s worthwhile to be familiar with the most common pricing models in the industry. These include:

1. Contingency Fee Structure

The contingency fee structure is the most common type of recruitment fee. In this model, your organization only pays a recruiting agency if they successfully place a candidate for your open position.

Typically, the fee is a percentage of the new employee’s first-year salary, ranging from 15-25%. For example, a contingency fee of 20% for an employee with a starting salary of $100,000 would result in a recruitment fee of $20,000.

This structure is best for organizations that are regularly recruiting with a steady stream of open positions and want to minimize their financial risk.


  • No upfront costs for the organization
  • Encourages the recruitment agency to find quality candidates quickly


  • May result in lower-quality candidates being presented as the agency is focused on filling positions quickly
  • Higher percentage fees can be costly for organizations with high salaries

2. Retainer Fee Structure

In a retainer fee structure, your organization pays an agreed-upon amount to “retain” the services of a recruitment agency for a specific period. A percentage of the total amount is paid upfront, while the remainder is delivered in milestones that align with the agency’s progress in filling the position.

It’s worth noting that the total percentage is similar to that of a contingency fee in that it’s also a percentage of the employee’s first-year salary. However, it tends to be higher since this structure is mostly used for hard-to-fill or executive-level positions.


  • Higher level of commitment from the recruitment agency
  • More personalized and in-depth search for candidates
  • Minimal risk of losing top candidates to competitors


  • Upfront costs for the organization, regardless of whether the position is filled or not
  • Longer recruitment process due to more thorough candidate search and evaluation
  • Higher fees can be costly for organizations with limited budgets.

3. Flat Fee Structure

As the name suggests, a flat fee structure is when the recruitment agency charges a fixed amount for their services. This can either be a one-time payment or split into milestones throughout the recruitment process.

Although not as common as percentage-fee structures, some agencies do offer a flat free structure. However, because the fees involved are lower than contingency or retainer fees, agencies may request an exclusivity agreement, where the organization agrees to only work with them for a certain period.

This structure is best used for entry-level or high-volume hiring, where the workload and level of effort required are relatively consistent. It also works for companies with a high turnover, since they can save on fees by using a flat fee for multiple hires.


  • Cost-efficient for organizations with high-volume or frequent hiring needs
  • Clear and predictable costs throughout the recruitment process


  • May not attract top-level candidates due to lower fees
  • Exclusivity agreement may limit options for the organization

4. Hourly Rate Fee Structure

With an hourly rate fee structure, the recruitment agency charges a set hourly rate for their services. The longer the recruitment process, the higher the fees will be.

This model is often used for specialized or executive-level positions where a more extensive search and evaluation process is necessary. It can also be beneficial for organizations that require ongoing support from the agency for recruiting top talent but don’t want to spend a large sum in the process.


  • Transparent billing based on actual time spent on the recruitment process
  • More control over costs for the organization since costs don’t increase or decrease based on the candidate’s salary


  • Can become expensive if the recruitment process takes longer than expected
  • Potential for conflict of interest if the agency is incentivized to prolong the process to increase fees

5. Hybrid Fee Structure

Finally, a hybrid fee structure combines elements of different fee models, such as a flat fee for initial services and an hourly rate for ongoing support. Or, it could involve a combination of flat fees and a percentage of the candidate’s salary upon successful placement.

For instance, an agency might charge a flat fee for sourcing and initial screening of candidates, followed by an hourly rate for interviews and negotiations with the top candidates. Once a candidate is hired, the organization pays a percentage of their salary as a placement fee. 

This structure is a good match for organizations that want a balance between the transparency of flat fees and the flexibility of hourly rates. It’s also suitable for organizations that aren’t sure how long the recruitment process will take and want some cost control but are willing to invest more for the right candidate.


  • Allows for flexibility in choosing which services to pay for on a flat fee basis or hourly rate
  • Can provide cost control for organizations while also offering incentives for the agency to find the best candidate


  • Requires careful negotiation and communication between the organization and agency to determine fair pricing
  • Can be complex and difficult to track expenses if not managed properly

Factors Influencing Recruitment Fee Structures

recruitment fees

With that said, the decision to choose a specific recruitment fee structure is ultimately dependent on various factors unique to each organization.  Some of the key factors that can influence this decision include:

Industry and Job Type

Depending on the industry and specific job type, recruitment processes can vary greatly in terms of time and resources required.

For example, recruiting for a high-level executive position in an industry with high competition for top talent, such as the finance industry, may involve extensive background checks and multiple rounds of interviews, while hiring for an entry-level retail position may require less intensive screening.

As a result, recruitment fee structures may need to be adjusted accordingly to account for the differences in time and effort required.

Candidate Demand and Availability

The level of demand and availability for certain types of candidates can also impact fee negotiations. Think of this as a supply and demand scenario.

When there’s a high demand for a specific skill set or job type, recruitment agencies may charge higher fees due to the scarcity of qualified candidates. On the other hand, if there’s an abundance of candidates with similar qualifications, agencies may be more willing to negotiate lower fees to secure the business.

Recruitment Agency Expertise and Reputation

When you’re choosing a recruitment agency to partner with, their expertise and reputation in your industry should also be taken into consideration. Agencies with specialized knowledge or experience in a particular field may command higher fees due to their added value and ability to source top-tier candidates.

At the same time, an agency’s reputation can also impact fees. If an agency has a track record of successfully placing qualified candidates and delivering results for their clients, they may be able to justify higher fees due to their proven track record of success.

Geographical Location

Finally, regional differences in recruitment fees can also play a role in negotiations. Local market prices for recruitment services can vary widely, with certain areas having higher or lower average fees based on factors such as the cost of living and competition within the industry.

When considering potential agencies to work with, it’s important to research the average fees in your specific region and take that into account when negotiating fee structures. Working with an agency that’s familiar with the local market can also be beneficial, as they may have a better understanding of what fees are considered reasonable and competitive in your area.

Assessing Cost-Benefit Analysis of Recruitment Fees

At the end of the day, it isn’t just about how much you’re paying in recruitment fees, but also the return on investment (ROI) that you’ll receive from those fees. To truly assess the cost-effectiveness of different fee structures, it’s important to conduct a thorough cost-benefit analysis.

This analysis should take into account not only the immediate cost of the recruitment fees, but also factors such as the quality and fit of the candidates provided, the time and resources saved by outsourcing recruitment, and the long-term impact on your company’s bottom line.

Below is a general formula for calculating ROI for recruitment fees:

Recruitment ROI= (Total revenue generated from recruited hires – Total cost of recruitment fees and expenses) / Total cost of recruitment fees and expenses

To put this into perspective, let’s say you pay $10,000 in recruitment fees and expenses to hire 3 employees. Those 3 employees generate a total of $100,000 in revenue for your company within the first year. Your ROI for those recruitment fees would be:

($100,000 – $10,000) / $10,000 = $9 or 900%

This means that for every $1 you spent on recruitment fees, you received a return of $9. 

This simplified example illustrates the importance of considering ROI when evaluating different fee structures to determine which structure is best for your organization’s needs.

Build Highly-Skilled Teams With Automated Recruitment

Working with recruitment agencies isn’t always the right fit for an organization. Aside from costly recruitment fees, agencies present additional drawbacks such as lack of visibility on the talent pool, longer recruitment times, and conflicts of interest.

Taking recruitment into your own hands can also be time-consuming for HR teams and present bottlenecks in your People strategy, which is where automation can offer a practical and cost-effective solution to help you build your team on your own terms.

Omni’s recruitment partners make building and advertising your talent search easy, sourcing and attracting talent to fit your company’s unique needs with well crafted job descriptions that fit your team’s needs and seamless integration capabilities, your shortlisted and hired talent are automatically uploaded into your HR system, taking the administrative burden and manual entry errors out of the recruitment process. Helping you to source, evaluate, screen, and hire teams without the headache of manual processes.

Learn more about how Omni’s automated system can streamline your entire employee lifecycle—from recruitment to onboarding and beyond.

Want to begin improving your onboarding experience today while you source the perfect candidates?

Our comprehensive Onboarding Kit has all the tools you’ll need to deepen engagement and provide a world-class company culture from day one.

Key Differences Between PEO vs EOR: Which Is Best for Your Organization?

Although global talent acquisition can solve many problems, it doesn’t come without its challenges, mainly abiding by international labor laws and providing the needed infrastructure for business expansion.

Traditional business models aren’t built to overcome these challenges, which explains the rise of two workforce management models: Professional Employer Organization (PEO) and an Employer of Record (EOR).

Both resources are third-party entities that shoulder some of the responsibilities involved in expanding your organization, but what exactly does each one offer, and how can you know whether a PEO vs EOR is best for your workforce? 

Here, we provide a comparative analysis of PEOs and EORs to help you choose the right solution for your needs.

Understanding PEOs (Professional Employer Organizations)

Before we get into the details of PEO vs EOR, know that PEOs are employment partners that offer you HR resources to accommodate various employee needs. Simply, a PEO is a co-employment solution, which requires you to establish your own entity in the country you wish to operate in, while helping to outsource some basic People management functions.

The core functions of a PEO are HR offerings, they may be as follows:

  • Processing payroll
  • Filing taxes
  • Complying with payroll
  • Issuing International payment
  • Administering employee benefits
  • Sponsoring health insurance, business insurance, and worker’s compensation sponsorship
  • Employee management
  • Recruitment and offboarding
  • Tax filing 

The shared responsibility between business owners and PEOs renders these partners co-employers. In order to engage a PEO’s services, businesses must be registered within the country they are operating within (also referred to as a target country). This enables PEOs to hire employees on your behalf, process local payroll, and handle the HR responsibilities you delegate to them.

Learn more: What is a Professional Employer Organization (PEO)?

In addition to HR procedures, PEOs can give you access to comprehensive insurance plans at lower premiums for your employees. Additional benefits include the assumption of liability when it comes to tax filing. Because PEOs are the employer of record, any fines or penalties that may arise due to incomplete, late, or inaccurate tax filings are absorbed by the PEO, relieving your HR team and company from responsibility. 

The main PEO limitation lies in the inability to use a PEO without a local business registration. This means organization’s cannot enlist a PEO to hire foreign workers in countries outside of the company’s jurisdiction, limiting the ability to expand to a global organization.

Additionally, some PEOs have a minimum requirement to enlist their services, meaning organizations may not utilize their services for single employees, making PEOs a more viable option for growing or established businesses.

Understanding EORs (Employers of Record)

An EOR is a third-party agency that assumes the legal responsibility of recruitment, hiring, payments, international employee managers, and other HR processes on your behalf. In other words, they become the registered employer, which eradicates the need for an entity in the target country.

Let’s take a look at the fundamental responsibilities of an EOR:

  • Hiring, onboarding, and firing international employees in a compliant manner
  • Drafting locally-compliant employment contracts
  • Providing work visas and permits as needed
  • Conducting any administrative tasks needed locally
  • Processing payroll
  • Administering employee benefits
  • Managing timesheets for some employees

A critical point for understanding PEO vs EOR is that EOR facilitates global employment; it exempts you from establishing a local entity in the foreign country you wish to hire an employee. EORs navigate complex employment laws and negotiations. They can easily avoid fines, penalties, and legal disputes, reducing risk and liability concerns for organizations.

Since EORs allow organizations to skip the business registration process, hiring an EOR saves you time and lets you focus on core operations while another entity handles the legalities. Additionally, you can scale your team up or down as needed.

As a business owner, this arrangement will take away some of your direct control, especially in the context of weighing PEO vs EOR.

Read next: What Is an Employer of Record (EOR)?

Key Differences Between PEO vs EOR

When we look at PEO vs EOR, we can highlight where these 2 employee management models part. These differences are key to choosing the right service for your business goals and needs.

If you hire a PEO, they become a co-employer. You own a local entity in the target country and let the PEO manage some of your HR functions. In that sense, you’re partly responsible for the risks and liabilities associated with functions such as payroll, tax filing, and employment laws.

EORs on the other hand, assume full legal responsibility for the talent you employ under their services. Without your organization’s registration in the foreign country, it’s up to the EOR provider to meet local labor regulations.

Scope of Services

PEOs oversee comprehensive HR and benefits management. You choose which HR functions to delegate to them, which typically include benefits administration, payroll processing, taxation, worker’s compensation, and risk management.

EORs offer services that fall under global employment and compliance, such as running background checks, managing locally compliant employment contracts, and more. An EOR is your legal employer, registering your business in its new locations and complying with local labor laws. EORs may also offer the same HR services that a PEO does—although on a more limited scale.

Employee Management

In a PEO arrangement, you retain control over your employees as well as direct management oversight. You can manage day-to-day tasks, salaries, and scheduling. To put it simply, you get more control over HR responsibilities than with an EOR.

To compare, the EOR model involves outsourcing employee management. Accordingly, the EOR has their own HR team. They control daily affairs, including payroll, benefits, and compliance, whereas you control company operations, salary values, and the distribution of tasks.

Geographic Coverage

PEOs usually have a domestic or regional focus. You must establish a legal entity in the foreign country or work with them locally. They may lack the wide legal expertise of EORs, which is crucial to compliance when working with international employees.

EORs are typically better suited if you’re after international coverage. They have legal entities in foreign countries and the required infrastructure for workforce expansion.

EORs handle the paperwork required to keep your business compliant thanks to their extensive knowledge of international labor law. Their services facilitate easier global expansion.

When to Choose a PEO

  • When you own legal entities in your target countries but lack the resources to meet all of your employees’ needs such as payroll processing and benefits administration.
  • If you’re looking to hire many employees in a new country, PEOs often require a minimum employee count.
  • When you’re looking to retain employee management responsibilities.

When to Choose an EOR

  • When you want to employ full-time workers in a country where you do not own a legal entity.
  • When you want to be completely excluded from any legal liabilities tied to your foreign workers.
  • If you wish to outsource all employee management responsibilities. 

Making the Decision

Still unclear on whether you’d benefit from a PEO vs EOR? Ask yourselves the following questions to further assess which option is right for you.

Assessing Your Organization’s Specific Needs and Objectives

Is it global, regional, or local expansion that you’re after? Do you want a third party to assume the legal responsibilities or conduct HR processes? Define your current business goals and needs, and anticipate future ones. This step will help you pick between PEO vs EOR and determine which tasks to delegate.

Considerations for Industry, Size, and Geography Scope

Does the industry you’re in have unique features (like industries with frequent injuries and damage)? This should tip the scales when you consider PEO vs EOR. What is the desired size or scale of your workforce? Are you focused on local or global expansion?

Conducting Due Diligence in Selecting a PEO vs EOR Partner

By now, you should have a clear picture of whether PEO vs EOR works best for your business. It’s time to research and assess the available service providers for whichever model you pick. Here are some questions to ask about each:

  • Does their range of services fulfill your goals?
  • Do their employees abide by state regulations?
  • Can they provide you with multiple references from professionals and clients?
  • What is their insurance policy like? Does it give you full or partial coverage?
  • Is the internal staff competent, experienced, and trained?
  • Does the company use the latest technology and have the best infrastructure for operations and employee management?
  • Is the service flexible, allowing you to alter your package to accommodate changes in your business needs?
  • Is the company a member of NAPEO? (Specific to PEOs)
  • Is the company IRS certified? (Specific to PEOs)
  • Is the customer support team responsive? (More relevant to EORs due to your limited control)

Exploring Other Workforce Solutions

If neither PEO vs EOR work for your company’s needs, you may want to consider an alternative solution that combines features to best align with your business goals. Human Resources Information Systems, or HRIS help organizations automate People management functions such as payroll, performance management, and records management. HRIS can be a great option for organizations with many employees both globally and regionally. With features such as visa tracking, tax withholdings, and automated reminders, HRIS can make managing employees easier and reduce the risk of manual errors.

Additional reading: What is HRIS? Why HR Needs Automation in 2023

Alternative options you might consider are in-house recruitment, Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), or Administrative Services Only (ASO).

Workforce Solutions to Accommodate Your Organizational Goals

Ultimately, the core of the PEO vs EOR debate lies in the range of services each offers. A PEO focuses on HR services, but an EOR centers legal compliance with laws for international employees. Accordingly, the former gives you more control over employees and more legal responsibility than the second.

As you see, there’s no ultimate winner here, which is why you must evaluate your specific business needs. Only then can you pick the employment model whose workforce solutions accommodate your organizational goals.

These third-party entities are born out of the evolving needs of the ever-changing workforce management field. They turn global expansion via outsourcing into a reality, helping overcome any potential hurdles.

Still not sure if a PEO vs EOR is right for your business? Chat with the Omni team to learn more about how our HRIS solution can help you supercharge your business operations as you grow.

What Is a Professional Employer Organization (PEO)? Understanding the Pros & Cons

You may dream of growing your mid-sized business or increasing its production, or you simply want to expand your team. With all company growth comes a need for a robust HR team to keep things running smoothly behind the scenes. From time-consuming recruitment efforts to ever-evolving local, state, and federal labor laws, the pressure to keep up with workforce needs and compliance efforts can be a lot for a growing organization.

A Professional Employer Organization (PEO) can be a useful tool for companies looking to expand their reach without growing their HR team.

According to the National Association of Professional Employer Organizations (NAPEO), “Small businesses that work with a PEO grow 7 to 9% faster, have employee turnover that is 10 to 14% lower, and are 50% less likely to go out of business.”

Keep reading to find out exactly what a PEO is, how it works, how it ensures business growth, and to understand the potential drawbacks of working with a PEO.

What Is a Professional Employer Organization (PEO)?

A professional employer organization— also referred to as an employee leaving company—is a service that allows small and mid-sized businesses to outsource their HR  administrative functions. Such Human Resource outsourcing forms what’s known as a co-employment arrangement—in which a business and a PEO share certain employment responsibilities.

A PEO can offer an array of HR solutions ranging from the most basic to more in depth. PEOs are equipped to handle the following functions:

In a traditional HR and employment management model, employers maintain full responsibility and control when it comes to managing employees. In a PEO arrangement, the service provider becomes a co-employer (the administrative employer), assuming agreed-upon employee-related responsibilities and liabilities.

When you outsource such operations, you still remain the worksite employer. This arrangement allows you to dedicate more time and energy to your core business operations, enhancing your services or products.

PEOs are particularly beneficial to small and medium-sized companies. They might have limited HR expertise or systems that can’t support payroll or HRIS on a large scale, all areas in which such service providers can help.

The Pros of Using a PEO

To determine if investing in a PEO is worth it, you should learn about its advantages and determine how these benefits may align with your business goals.

Cost Savings and Efficiency

Economies of Scale

NAPEO says, “The return on investment of using a PEO, in cost savings alone, is 27.3%.” This is possible thanks to the economies of scale—the cost advantages you enjoy when you streamline the production process.

Outsourcing HR functions helps you focus on your core business operations, which makes them more efficient and reduces errors, saving organizations time and resources. 

In addition to the basic HR functions that a PEO supports, some services provide organizations with real-time insights and data analytics that help employers better understand their employee’s performance. This information can be used to address employee performance gaps, set performance goals, and improve team effectiveness for more profitable outcomes.

Streamlines HR Processes

PEOs help streamline HR processes by leveraging expert knowledge and technology to perform functions such as recruitment and payroll processing. According to Gallup, the cost of replacing an employee can range from 50% to 2x the employee’s annual salary. By outsourcing recruitment to a PEO, organizations reduce their overhead costs as they grow their team.

Whatsmore, PEOs allow HR teams to offload administrative functions that take up valuable time. The time saved by leveraging a PEO can be used to focus on more strategic functions, helping organizations become more profitable.

Access to Expertise

HR and Compliance Knowledge

With a PEO by your side, you gain access to its expert knowledge in global HR and compliance. PEOs offer HR services including recruitment, payroll, and tax management in your target countries. PEOs support and partner with your existing HR team to help fill knowledge gaps for management outside of your host country.

A PEO’s knowledge helps your organization navigate dynamic federal and state labor laws while It keeps your business compliant with various tax and payroll regulations. 

Learn more: Your Guide to Managing Payroll Hong Kong

Employee Benefits Knowledge

PEOs provide comprehensive benefit plans that encompass a full suite of insurance coverage, including general liability and workers’ compensation, along with other requisite insurance types based on each employee’s place of residence. Notably, PEOs undertake complete liability for the employment arrangement on behalf of the client company.

This goes beyond routine benefits such as health and dental. PEOs can help your employees navigate unique benefits native to their country of residence such as the Hong Kong Rental Reimbursement Scheme or Absentee Payroll Singapore.

Enhanced Employee Benefits

Attracting and Retaining Top Talent

Well managed benefits and lower prices are a direct advantage to both employees and employers. Comprehensive benefits are a key driver for talent acquisition, and are an effective way for organizations to demonstrate their employee appreciation.

By offering quality benefits and tailored assistance for employees in your target region, you help improve the likelihood of employee retention, further boosting productivity and business outcomes.

Competitive Benefits Packages

PEOs utilize their extensive reach and network to engage in negotiations with leading insurance providers to secure all-encompassing benefit packages for employees. This approach enhances the accessibility of healthcare plans for smaller businesses and allows them to extend competitive and appealing benefits, which, in turn, help in the attraction and retention of top talent. PEOs often offer an array of plans, encompassing health insurance, dental and vision care, retirement plans, short-term and long-term disability coverage, life insurance, and accident insurance.

Risk Mitigation and Compliance

Working with PEOs makes them legal and tax-related employers, which means they assume the legal responsibility and manage risks when it comes to regulatory compliance.

As mentioned, their knowledge of federal, state, and local labor laws and tax standards enables them to keep your business compliant and evade fines and penalties with ease. 

PEOs can help you create an employee handbook, accurately file employment tax forms and deposits, refer you to legal agents, prepare for compliance, handle immigration requirements such as the Singapore Employment Pass, and comply with sick leave and state worker classification laws.

If you partner with a certified PEO (CPEO), that means it meets the strict legal requirements of the IRS (for US based employees), meaning a CPEO can pay federal taxes for you, and potentially help you avoid instances of double taxation.

Improved Compliance Tracking and Reporting

PEOs play a pivotal role in guiding organizations through the complexities of tax regulations, employment laws, and healthcare mandates. They help ensure that businesses remain in compliance with local regulations to prevent any potential fines or penalties. Moreover, PEOs are responsible for the maintenance of comprehensive HR records and documentation, thereby guaranteeing that all essential records are readily available to meet compliance requirements. These records include personnel files, employment contracts, and documentation related to employee benefits.

The commitment to compliance is a continuous endeavor, as PEOs monitor any changes in regulations and promptly adapt their processes to align with them. This proactive approach helps businesses in addressing compliance challenges, thereby reducing the risk of incurring penalties.

The Cons of Using a PEO

Learning about the drawbacks of this co-employment model is just as essential as understanding its many advantages. Get acquainted with the cons of PEOs to best assess if this model is right for your organization. 

Lack of Control

You’ll inevitably give up some control over your business if you outsource select services. After all, it’s the PEOs name that is listed on your employees’ paychecks. However, a PEO only takes on the services that you decide to outsource—mainly HR functions and risks.

In other words, you’ll remain in control of your staff and day-to-day business dealings, making operational decisions for your business. You’ll decide on work hours, pay rates, and schedules, as PEOs don’t replace your internal HR team, they only support to streamline administrative tasks.

With PEOs you’ll relinquish control on functions such as choosing benefits providers for insurance, tax filing, payroll administration, and any other administrative duties you’ve opted to enlist your PEO to handle.

Cost Considerations

PEO fees can vary, usually contingent on the number of employees in your workforce and the specific services you require. Many reputable companies will give you a cost analysis upon request. According to industry experts, the estimated average PEO costs typically range from 2% to 12% of total wages.

 It’s important to consider the overall cost of in-house HR administration, including the potential revenue loss due to the time taken from your core business activities. In many cases, the expenditure on a PEO can be highly beneficial, potentially saving your company up to 35% on HR costs compared to what you might spend if you opted not to utilize a PEO for outsourcing payroll and HR functions.

Industry-Specific Limitations

Although PEOs typically give you better healthcare insurance rates and workers’ compensation rates, some businesses may not qualify for their group plan or you may need to pay more than if you choose traditional management. The bottom line is that PEOs tailor their services to your specific business needs, which means varying quotes. It’s best to talk with PEO providers to determine if services are a good fit for your industry.

How Can Omni Help International Teams?

Omni makes it easy to support employees across multiple countries, time zones, and currencies.

Our centralized document management solution makes gathering the necessary data required to apply for employment passes, rental schemes, and other country-specific initiatives seamless and timely. With customized workflows and automated reminders, HR can help empower employees to manage the deadlines and documentation requirements for applications. And centralized documents and real-time data makes it easy for employees to access salary information and produce reports and documents necessary for verification.

employer's return

Offering a comprehensive payroll solution tailored to various countries specific requirements with features like support for HKD, SGD, and MYR, automated tax calculations, and managed contributions, Omni can help HR teams simplify their payroll processing and ensure compliance with ease.

Additionally, Omni’s customizable dashboard allows your teams to set and manage calendars pre-loaded with country or region specific holidays and timezones, seamlessly onboarding individuals in various locations.

Book a demo with our team to learn more about how Omni can support your international workforce.

The recruitment process is an essential part of a functioning HR program. As the first step in the employee lifecycle, recruitment helps build well-qualified teams to drive your business goals. Yet the process has become somewhat of a burden for HR professionals, taking up significant time and resources that could otherwise be spent on more strategic initiatives.

According to a capital advisory firm Josh Bersin’s Time-to-Hire Factbook, “The 2023 projections show a significant increase in the longest hiring times for 3 out of 4 regions, suggesting that hiring in APAC, EMEA, and LATAM (Latin America) will be increasingly difficult and volatile this year.”

Additionally, a Robert Half study reveals that 62% and 77% of applicants lose interest in a job if they don’t hear back in 2 weeks (10 business days) or 3 weeks from the initial interview, respectively.

These alarming statistics are all the more reason to make your hiring process as efficient as possible. A screening interview, when done right, can save you valuable time and effort by revealing key insights before you invest any more effort into your candidate search. 

What Is a Screening Interview?

A screening interview is typically the first conversation you have with a candidate during the recruitment process and is a part of the first hiring round—or the pre-employment screening process. A screening interview may be an in-person, video, or phone interview— also known as a phone screen—or in some instances a questionnaire.

Screening interviews follow resume evaluations, after you’ve shortlisted a group of applicants that meet the minimum experience and education requirements for the position.

The goal of the screening interview is to determine which applicants possess the required qualifications for the role you are hiring for. It enables recruiters to decide which candidates will move to the next hiring round.

Aside from assessing applicants to see if they have the needed qualifications, a screening interview is a chance for the recruiter to further explain the position and company to the candidate. They can also ask about an applicants’ salary expectations and availability to work and answer any questions they may have about the position, company, or hiring process.

Benefits of a Screening Interview

The main function of a screening interview is to determine how fit a candidate is for the job by comparing their qualifications to the job requirements. Screening interviews help to rule out unfit applicants early on in the recruitment process, saving recruiters time and improving the pool of candidates as you move forward in the hiring process.

By reducing the number of candidates for later hiring rounds, HR can conduct fewer interviews, save on recruitment costs, and shorten the time to hire (especially with phone screens).

As a result, you can fill empty positions faster, maintain your team’s productivity level, and avoid reviewing applications and assignments from under qualified candidates.

Tips for Conducting an Effective Screening Interview

Screening interviews can reveal a significant amount of information about candidates when conducted strategically. 

Set appropriate hiring criteria

Setting hiring criteria that reflect the job requirements is a must, as it enables you to evaluate how suitable a candidate is for a position. Be sure to write clear and comprehensive job descriptions, and use this information to inform your questions.

Learn more: 5 Onboarding Specialist Job Description Examples

Come prepared

Use the criteria you’ve outlined in your job description to prepare your interview questions ahead of time. Think through the technical need for the position and which skills are essential versus nice to have. Be sure to ask each candidate the same standard questions to avoid bias.

Omni tip: Ask open-ended questions, as they give you more details about the applicants.

Take notes

You may think you’ll remember everything you discuss in your screening interview, but it’s best to take notes during and after the interview to refer back to. This ensures that nothing gets forgotten or overlooked, and helps you decipher each applicant after conducting several interviews.

5 Important Screening Interview Questions

These 5 screening interview questions help tap into the essential information you need to quickly assess the viability of your candidates. Use these examples as a guiding principle in your next screening interview.

1. Can you briefly describe your relevant experience and qualifications for this role?

This question allows you to quickly gauge if the candidate possesses the necessary qualifications and experience for the position. It helps filter out unqualified applicants early in the process, saving time and effort.

2. What motivated you to apply for this position and our company?

This question assesses the candidate’s genuine interest and alignment with your company and the role. It helps identify candidates who are a good cultural fit and genuinely enthusiastic about the opportunity, which can lead to higher retention rates and better job satisfaction.

3. Can you describe a recent challenge you faced in a similar role and how you overcame it?

This question evaluates the candidate’s problem-solving skills, resilience, and practical experience in the role. It provides insight into their ability to handle real work-related challenges, making it easier to identify those with relevant experience.

4. What are your salary expectations for this position?

Asking about salary expectations early in the process helps prevent wasting time on candidates whose salary expectations are misaligned with the company’s budget. It also allows you to assess if the candidate’s expectations are within the acceptable range for the role.

This question addresses practical considerations, such as the candidate’s location, commuting preferences, and availability. It helps ensure that the candidate can meet the job’s logistical requirements, saving time that might be wasted on candidates who cannot.

These screening interview questions help efficiently identify candidates who are not only qualified but also a good fit for the company and position. By addressing qualifications, motivation, problem-solving skills, salary expectations, and logistical constraints early in the process, you can streamline your efforts and focus on the most promising candidates, ultimately saving time and resources.

Read next: 10 Google Interview Questions to Inspire Your Hiring Process

Automate Your Way to Highly-Skilled Teams

Omni helps you streamline and automate your recruitment workflows, enabling you to attract, screen, and hire the best talent. Our platform allows you to sync all candidate applications in one place and easily collaborate with hiring managers to schedule screening interviews, send impactful communications, and analyze interview feedback.

With Omni’s recruitment workflows, you can send offers or rejections with just a few clicks, coordinate candidate interviews, share candidate feedback among management, and swiftly transition successful candidates into the onboarding process to ensure top performance and engagement.

Omni manages and automates time-consuming manual tasks to allow you and your recruitment team to focus on what’s really important: crafting impactful screening interview questions, establishing parameters to interpret candidates viability, and ultimately hiring award-winning talent.

Book a demo with our team today to learn more about how Omni can help revolutionize your employee management.

What Is an Employer of Record (EOR)? Pros & Cons Explained

The global market size of outsourced services was worth over $90 billion USD in 2019, doubling its value since 2000. With the rise of outsourcing, it’s only natural to question how you can source talent in the global market without establishing other bases around the world.

Many seamless solutions are there to help your business expand, such as a global employer of record (EOR), facilitating hiring and streamlining the recruitment process in foreign markets.

In this article, we’ll explore EORs, elaborating on their advantages and disadvantages to help you decide if an EOR is the right model for your business.

Defining an Employer of Record (EOR)

EOR is a third-party agency that takes on the legal responsibility of hiring, recruitment, payment, management, and HR processes on behalf of your company. In other words, they serve as the registered employer for oversea’s employees while you remain in control of the day-to-day operations.

It’s crucial to note that EORs don’t replace your HR resources (they only augment them) to help you manage your recruits. In that sense, they support a company’s goal of international expansion.

An EOR helps businesses of all sizes to employ talent from around the world, working across international borders with extensive knowledge and resources about various local markets and employment laws. 

So what exactly falls under the responsibilities of an EOR? Simply put, EORs have the legal authority to conduct tasks pertaining to employment, immigration, benefits, and payroll, which are as the following:

  • Running background checks on potential candidates
  • Drafting, issuing, and maintaining locally-compliant employment contracts
  • Providing work visas and permits according to local laws
    (such as helping navigate and apply for a Singapore employment pass)
  • Onboarding employees in the country you’re recruiting from
  • Withholding payroll costs and taxes from employees
  • Issuing wages and administering benefits
  • Managing timesheets and leave allowance
  • Terminating contracts when necessary
  • Compliance with offboarding and termination labor laws

To appreciate the weight that an EOR takes off your shoulders, let’s go back to a time when your only option was traditional employment. Maybe you’re running a company in APAC and want to expand your business operations to Guatemala.

You’d need to establish a subsidiary in that country, register your company with the local government, comply with local employment laws, handle taxes, insurance, and banking. If you wish to further expand to another country, you’d need to start that process all over again.

In other words, EORs make it easy for organizations to expand beyond their local borders while ensuring compliance with local laws and regulations. 

The Pros of Using an EOR

EORs can open up a wealth of opportunities for organizations looking to expand their network of talent and business operations.

Global Expansion and Compliance

If you dream of your business expanding worldwide, that’s exactly what EOR is designed for. It facilitates global expansion by eradicating the need for a local entity in the foreign country, a process that consumes time, effort, and money.

Thanks to this employment arrangement, you pass on the logistics to the EOR who becomes responsible for negotiating complex international employment laws and negotiations. They empower you to tap into the international talent pool.

Speed and Flexibility

It can be weeks or even months before you hire international talent the traditional way. With an EOR, it can take only a few days, rendering this the fastest method of building a global workforce. That’s because you can skip establishing an entity in the foreign country you want your business to operate in. Also, EORs have a preset entity and on-call network of employees to help you dip into a well-trained talent pool.

After their recruitment, this system saves you the time needed for HR processes. You won’t need to spend hours processing and paying taxes in the different countries that your company employs in.

Even better, an EOR allows you flexibility in the size of your workforce. So, you can scale up or down your team to accommodate the workload and skill sets needed.

This flexibility is perfect for companies with fluctuating and project-specific needs. It’s also ideal for those who want to test the waters before they commit to a particular talent pool. Without the commitment of establishing an entity, you’re free to do so.

Risk Mitigation

The fear of breaching international labor laws will dissipate as another entity assumes full legal responsibility for compliance. An EOR is well-versed in the regulations for international employees and can evade penalties, fines, and legal disputes.

This is a more convenient arrangement than co-employment for business owners who are just delving into the international market, as a co-employment model holds companies partly responsible for legal compliance.

As for the international employees, they also enjoy a reduced risk since they feel at ease working under a local staffing agency.

That’s because this entity will withhold the right taxes, handle employee benefits as required by the law (such as paid, maternity, and sick leaves), compensate workers in cases of worksite accidents, and plan insurance policies.

Focus on Core Business

When you hire an EOR, you outsource administrative tasks. They carry out the onboarding process, prepare hires for the job, have their individual payroll software, and handle payment for all the employees they help recruit. This takes a significant amount of work off of HR’s plates, allowing you to focus on more strategic initiatives such as building company culture and closing performance gaps.

Learn more: Shrinking Employee Performance Gaps Through Analysis and Continuous Learning

As a business owner, you still maintain control. This efficient and productive employment process enables you to truly focus on your core business operations, as you have the resources and time to do so.

The Cons of Using an EOR

Understanding the downsides will help you determine if EOR is the right choice for your company.

Cost Considerations

If you’re recruiting many employees, the cost of an EOR structure can add up. You might be paying a premium to the EOR-providing service along with additional costs for issuing benefits for a big workforce.

On the flip side, if you are running a smaller team, paying for an EOR can have the opposite effect, saving you administrative and management costs (particularly in the setup phase!) 

Not to mention, EORs can help you avoid penalties for labor law breaches thanks to their in-depth knowledge of local regulations. 

Loss of Direct Control

While EORs help administer your payroll processes, it comes at a loss of control for your HR team. EOR providers operate on their own pay schedules that may differ from your organization, resulting in EOR managed employees being paid at a different frequency than local employees. 

Consider the payroll process and insurance policy of your EOR before committing to them if this is a concern. You’ll find processes and policies stated in the service agreement.

Complexity in Global Operations

It’s common to face communication and coordination issues when you globalize your team. Whether it’s a cultural barrier, language barrier, or time difference, many factors can make communication a challenge between local and international employees. 

This draw-back isn’t so much a result of utilizing an EOR as it is the growing pains of a global workforce. Much like managing a hybrid workforce, global organizations need to prioritize culture and ensure communication and expectations are clearly outlined and nurtured to remain aligned across teams. 

How Can Omni Help International Teams?

Omni makes it easy to support employees across multiple countries, time zones, and currencies.

Our centralized document management solution makes gathering the necessary data required to apply for employment passes, rental schemes, and other country-specific initiatives seamless and timely. With customized workflows and automated reminders, HR can help empower employees to manage the deadlines and documentation requirements for applications. And centralized documents and real-time data makes it easy for employees to access salary information and produce reports and documents necessary for verification.


Offering a comprehensive payroll solution tailored to various countries specific requirements with features like support for HKD, SGD, and MYR, automated tax calculations, and managed contributions, Omni can help HR teams simplify their payroll processing and ensure compliance with ease.

Additionally, Omni’s customizable dashboard allows your teams to set and manage calendars pre-loaded with country or region specific holidays and timezones, seamlessly onboarding individuals in various locations.

Book a demo with our team to learn more about how Omni can support your international workforce.

Singapore Employment Pass: Updates & Requirements in 2023

In the heart of Southeast Asia, Singapore thrives as a hub of innovation and economic prowess. For many professionals, this vibrant city-state represents a realm of unparalleled career opportunities and a high quality of life. But before foreign workers can jump into their Singapore career there’s one step that needs to be taken first—the Employment Pass (E Pass).

This critical document not only offers a working visa but serves as a conduit for personal and professional growth. And recently, the regulations around accessing the E Pass and the E Pass salary requirements have evolved.

Here, we’ll dive into the core elements of Singapore’s E Pass and E Pass Salary information, and take a look at recent updates, including the introduction of the points-based Complementarity Assessment Framework (COMPASS) and revised minimum salary requirements.

Understanding the Singapore Employment Pass

In Singapore, the E Pass is an essential work visa that allows foreign professionals, managers, executives, and skilled workers to live and work in the city-state. It is a vital document for expatriates, opening doors to numerous career opportunities and experiences in Singapore.

To give you a comprehensive understanding of the Singapore Employment Pass and the E pass salary regulations, let’s break down their key aspects:

Eligibility Criteria

The E Pass is designed for individuals who meet specific requirements, including minimum salary levels, educational qualifications, and relevant work experience. The eligibility criteria are meticulously designed to ensure that foreign professionals and workers add value to Singapore’s workforce.

Types of Employment Passes (EP) Available

The Singaporean government has introduced different categories of Employment Passes to cater to varying skill levels and industries. The 3 primary types include:

Employment Pass for Professionals: The Employment Pass for Professionals is the most common type. It’s typically designed for mid- to high-skilled professionals who hold recognized qualifications. Applicants should have an offer of employment in a managerial, executive, or specialized job role. The minimum monthly E Pass salary required varies based on factors like the applicant’s age and the sector of employment, but it typically starts lower for young professionals and goes up as they gain experience.

S Pass for Mid-Skilled Workers: The S Pass is intended for mid-skilled workers, offering a more accessible option for those who may not qualify for the Employment Pass. Eligibility is based on the applicant’s qualifications, experience, and the employer’s compliance with quotas on S Pass holders.

Miscellaneous Work Pass for Short-Term Work: The Miscellaneous Work Pass is designed for individuals who need to perform short-term, non-conventional work in Singapore. It is generally used for activities that don’t fall under standard employment categories.

These categories cater to a wide spectrum of workers, from highly skilled professionals to those in mid-skilled positions and even individuals engaged in short-term projects. Understanding these categories is crucial when applying for the right Employment Pass and ensuring compliance with Singapore’s immigration laws. In the subsequent sections, we’ll delve into E Pass salary requirements and other critical details for each category.

2023 Updates and Requirements

As Singapore continues to evolve as a global business hub, it continually refines its policies and requirements regarding foreign work passes to maintain its competitive edge while safeguarding opportunities for local talent. Staying informed about these changes is crucial for employers, HR professionals, and aspiring expatriates alike.

Immigration Policies

One notable update in Singapore’s immigration policies came into effect on 11th March 2022. The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) introduced an innovative approach by replacing traditional inked endorsement stamps on passports with electronic Visit Passes (E Passes). This not only streamlines the immigration process but also underscores Singapore’s commitment to harnessing digital solutions in managing immigration.

New Minimum E Pass Salary Requirements

The qualifying E Pass salary is $5,000SGD for most sectors, except financial services. For those in financial services, the minimum E Pass salary stands at $5,500SGD. This salary requirement progressively increases with age, reaching up to $10,500SGD (for most sectors) and $11,500SGD (for financial services) for individuals aged 45 and above. This new framework emphasizes both the value of experience and skill set, ensuring that foreign talents align with Singapore’s evolving workforce needs.

Learn more: Payroll Singapore Reference Guide

The COMPASS Assessment Framework

Effective from September 1st, 2023, new E Pass candidates will encounter a new requirement, the Complementarity Assessment Framework (COMPASS). Alongside meeting the E Pass salary qualifications, candidates will need to navigate the COMPASS evaluation to determine their eligibility.

The second stage involves the COMPASS scoring system, which all candidates must follow unless exempted. To secure an E Pass, candidates need to amass a minimum of 40 points across various criteria within the COMPASS framework. These include:

  • E Pass Salary: COMPASS evaluates the candidate’s fixed monthly salary concerning sector-specific benchmarks, assigning points based on how well the salary aligns with local standards.
  • Qualifications: Employers must ensure that candidates’ qualifications are authentic and awarded by accredited institutions, requiring verification proof for post-secondary diploma and above qualifications from background screening companies and government/awarding institution portals.
  • Diversity (Firm-Related): COMPASS encourages employers to diversify their foreign professional workforce by awarding points for hiring candidates from underrepresented countries or regions.
  • Support for Local Employment (Firm-Related): Employers are prompted to display efforts in supporting local employment. Points can be earned by surpassing expectations in areas like job advertising and fair consideration.

In addition to the fundamental criteria, COMPASS factors in bonus points based on the candidate’s specialized skills and alignment with Singapore’s strategic economic priorities.

The introduction of COMPASS ensures greater transparency, quality, and diversity in E Pass applications. Employers can benefit from the enhanced Self-Assessment Tool (SAT) to confirm candidate eligibility before applying. Also, successful candidates must meet vaccination requirements for E Pass issuance.

Updates on the Dependent Pass and S Pass Quota

Since May 1st, 2021, Dependent Pass (DP) holders seeking employment in Singapore have encountered a transformative change. DP holders now need to qualify for and obtain their work passes, such as E Passes, S Passes, or Work Permits, to work in Singapore.

As a result, the concept of dependency on the main pass holder has been redefined, granting DP holders increased autonomy in their work and stay privileges. Their DP will need to be canceled before their E Passes or S Pass is issued, signifying a significant shift in the dynamics of employment for DP holders.

Application Process

Applying for an E Pass in Singapore is a meticulous process, designed to ensure a smooth entry for foreign professionals into the country.

Step-by-step guide to applying for an Employment Pass.

Step 1: Submit an Application. Your journey begins with the submission of an online application for the E Pass. Employers (or their appointed employment agents) can start this process. Ensure the candidate meets the necessary qualifications by using the Self-Assessment Tool (SAT). The processing time for this initial application stage typically takes place within 10 business days.

Step 2: Receive the In-Principle Approval (IPA). Once your application successfully passes the initial stage, you will receive an In-Principle Approval (IPA) letter. This letter is a significant milestone, serving as a pre-approved single-entry visa for the candidate to enter Singapore. The IPA also specifies whether the candidate needs to undergo a medical examination.

Step 3: Request MOM to Issue the E Pass. With the IPA in hand, employers should proceed to request the Ministry of Manpower to issue the Employment Pass. If required, this stage may include compliance with vaccination prerequisites. This step is typically immediate.

Step 4: Receive the Notification Letter. Employers will receive a notification letter, marking another pivotal point in the process. If deemed necessary, you can extend the validity of this letter should candidates require additional time for card registration procedures.

Step 5: Register Fingerprints and Have Photo Taken. Candidates will need to register their fingerprints and have their photo taken at MOM if indicated. This step is usually immediate and is a crucial part of the application process.

Step 6: Receive the Employment Pass Card. The culmination of this process is the issuance of the actual Employment Pass card. Authorized recipients or candidates themselves will receive this card within 5 working days after fingerprint and photo registration or document verification.

Required Documents and How to Prepare Them

Before embarking on the E Pass application journey, it’s essential to ensure you have the necessary documents ready:

  • Proof of qualifications, which should be authentic and awarded by accredited institutions.
  • Written consent from the candidate to apply for the E Pass on their behalf.
  • Verification proof for post-secondary diploma and above qualifications.

Online Application Process

Employers can easily apply for the E Pass through the E Pass online portal on the Ministry of Manpower’s website. The process involves the submission of required documents and payment of processing fees.

Processing Times and Fees

Processing time for E Pass applications typically occurs within 10 business days. However, For overseas companies without a Singapore-registered office, the processing time may take up to 8 weeks.

The application fee for an E Pass is $70 SGD, but there are several other fees you might incur, based on factors such as the type of the employing company and the desired duration of the pass. These fees are meant to contribute to the resources required to ensure a streamlined application process for E Passes in Singapore.

Securely Navigate Employee Data and E Pass Salary Management With Automation

In Singapore, the E Pass is far more than just a visa—it’s a ticket to one of the most dynamic and economically vibrant destinations in the world. This vital travel document enables both professionals and businesses to become part of Singapore’s thriving business community, contributing to its growth while reaping the benefits of a world-class living environment.

In the backdrop of these E Pass salary and other regulatory changes, technology can help manage the various documents and E Pass salary requirements needed to support your foreign talent.

Omni allows your organization to securely and centrally manage employee information such as proof of qualifications and written consent necessary to obtain a Singapore E Pass. Our employee-portal makes it easy for employee’s to upload and update their information, centralizing critical information such as E Pass numbers, expiry dates, and renewal reminders, helping ensure your E Pass management meets the regulations set by the Singapore government.

e pass salary

With localized payroll, Omni can help your team process E Pass salaries with ease. Omni offers a comprehensive payroll solution tailored to Singapore’s specific requirements. With features like support for SGD, automated tax calculations, and managed CPF contributions, Omni can help HR teams simplify their payroll processing and ensure compliance.

With our automated payroll software Singapore, digitized and secure pay slip distribution, and dedicated support teams to guide your team and ensure compliance, Omni’s payroll processing reduces the administrative burden of your HR team and frees up valuable time to dedicate to more impactful business processes.

e pass salary

Our expert support and assistance is tailored to your businesses unique requirements and local regulations. Book a demo today and learn how Omni can help you streamline your E Pass salary payroll processes and expertly navigate Singapore E Pass management to ensure compliance for your organization.

5 Onboarding Specialist Job Description Examples

Onboarding is an integral part of the employee experience, setting the foundation for your organization’s culture, productivity, and engagement. A well crafted Onboarding Specialist job description takes into account the significant impact the employee onboarding experience has on your organization, understanding it’s essential that HR teams dedicate their time and resources to building and maintaining an onboarding experience that is consistent and comprehensive.

For growing organizations managing the onboarding process can require a significant amount of HR’s time and resources, which is where Onboarding Specialists can play an integral role in maintaining a seamless onboarding program. In order to find the right talent to fit your organization’s unique needs, you’ll need to craft a well structured Onboarding Specialist job description. This requires clear and accurate titles, comprehensive job descriptions, and benefits information that best illustrates your company’s assets. 

Key Factors to a Well-Structured HR Onboarding Specialist Job Description

A recent survey revealed that 52% of new hires feel undertrained post onboarding, especially those working remotely and attending remote onboarding programs. The data should serve as a wake-up call for organizations to find HR Onboarding Specialists who can develop and execute onboarding processes that impart the necessary skills and knowledge required by the candidates to thrive in the role. That’s where a well-structured Onboarding Specialist job description will help you to attract suitable candidates who can structure and execute an onboarding program that adequately prepares employees for their roles. Here are the 4 primary elements of a well-draft job description: 

Job Title and Summary 

Begin with clear and accurate job titles for each Onboarding Specialist job description, such as “HR Onboarding and Operations Specialist,” and follow it with a comprehensive summary. This summary should introduce your organization and its market prominence and convey your core values. Focus on how this role influences these values and the overall company culture and provide a glimpse of what potential candidates can anticipate. 

Key Responsibilities 

The specific responsibilities of the role will vary depending on the industry. For example, if you are drafting an Onboarding Specialist job description for the finance sector, their duties would encompass familiarizing new hires with the tools and systems used for financial management. Conversely, the marketing industry focuses on pairing experienced marketing professionals with new team members to ensure knowledge transfer right from the outset. It is crucial to tailor the responsibilities listed in this section to the unique demands of the particular industry, as each sector has its distinct requirements.

Qualifications and Experience

Specify the qualifications and experience criteria clearly and tailor them to the specific industry’s needs. For instance, when drafting an Onboarding Specialist job description for the technology sector, prioritize candidates with a strong tech aptitude. While a Bachelor’s degree in HR is valuable, targeting candidates with practical experience and knowledge within the tech field is necessary. Therefore, ensure that the qualifications and relevant experience align closely with the unique demands of the industry in question. 


Outline the blend of soft and hard skills crucial for the role. When it comes to employee onboarding, you need someone great at communicating, working well with others, and solving problems effectively alongside their technical skills. For instance, an Onboarding Specialist job description in the tech sector will mention strong communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and teamwork. At the same time, the role may also require expertise in programming languages like Python and C++ and knowledge of web development, cloud computing, and machine learning. 

In addition to these 4 elements, consider including a “Why Join Us” section emphasizing your organization’s mission, vision, and values to attract potential candidates. Provide concise application instructions, and consider highlighting the various benefits and perks of becoming part of our company. While these elements are primarily intended to persuade highly qualified candidates, it is essential to clearly outline your expectations for candidates as outlined above.

Now let’s take a look at 5 examples of a comprehensive Onboarding Specialist job description to help you attract the right talent for your organization. 

Onboarding Specialist Job Description 1 (Tech)

At (company’s name), we are actively seeking a tech-savvy professional with a strong proficiency in HRIS, onboarding tools, and digital document management systems. As an Onboarding Specialist, you will be crucial in effectively managing employee data, developing successful onboarding programs, and generating insightful reports. We are looking for an individual who can excel in the role’s technical aspects and cultivate a profound appreciation for our company’s values, culture, and mission.

Key Responsibilities 

  • Conduct engaging new employee orientation sessions to introduce new hires to our organization’s structure and mission, fostering a sense of connection from day one.
  • Ensure the accurate and timely completion of all necessary onboarding paperwork, including tax forms and benefits enrollment.
  • Assist new employees in understanding and enrolling in company benefits programs, including health insurance, retirement plans, and wellness initiatives.
  • Develop and execute tailored onboarding programs for employees working remotely. 
  • Monitor the progress of new hires during their probationary periods, offering support as needed.
  • Collaborate with IT and facilities teams to ensure new employees have the required equipment, access, and workspace.
  • Act as an advocate for change within the onboarding process, constantly seeking ways to improve and make it more inclusive. 


  • Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources, Business Administration, or a related field. 
  • Minimum of 2-3 years of HR experience, focusing on onboarding and employee orientation.
  • Proficiency in Python, Java, C++, or others relevant to the role.
  • Skills in front-end (HTML, CSS, JavaScript) and back-end (Node.js, Ruby on Rails) development.
  • Familiarity with collaboration and communication tools such as Microsoft Teams, Slack, and video conferencing platforms for conducting virtual onboarding. 
  • Understanding cybersecurity best practices and data privacy is crucial to protect sensitive employee information.
  • Must be excellent at cross-functional collaboration and work swiftly with IT and other teams to ensure a holistic onboarding experience. 

Why Join (Company’s Name)

We at (company’s name) are dedicated to addressing bias challenges in the tech sector. Our mission is to create an environment where every employee, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation, faith, etc. feels valued, supported, and empowered to excel. When you join our team, you become an integral part of this mission, contributing to a more inclusive tech industry. 

Onboarding Specialist Job Description 2 (Finance) 

As an Onboarding Specialist in our organization, your role is crucial in helping new hires overcome common challenges in the finance industry. Recognizing the fast-paced, high-pressure environment, you’ll design onboarding materials and stress management strategies to ease their transition. Given the technical nature of finance, your responsibility includes crafting comprehensive training programs, offering personalized guidance for individuals from diverse backgrounds, and teaching a culture of continuous learning. 

Key Responsibilities 

  • Conduct orientation sessions and collaborate with finance department managers to develop specialized training programs. 
  • Collaborate with compliance officers to ensure the new hires receive training on industry-specific regulations, legal requirements, and ethical standards.
  • Facilitate training on financial software systems, tools, and applications used within the organization, ensuring that new employees are proficient in using these resources effectively.
  • Maintain accurate records of all onboarding activities, ensuring compliance with financial industry regulations and company policies.
  • Collaborate with HR and finance teams to continually enhance the onboarding process, incorporating new employee feedback and identifying improvement areas.
  • Ease out of the journey of those switching to finance from other departments. 


  • Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources, Finance, or a related field.
  • Proven experience in HR onboarding or a similar role within the finance industry.
  • Must understand the correct implementation of HR automation software and tools. 
  • Familiarity with commonly used tools for financial data management such as Excel, QuickBooks, SAP, Tableau, and more. 
  • In-depth knowledge of financial industry regulations and compliance requirements.
  • Strong communication, presentation, and interpersonal skills.
  • Must know complex regulatory frameworks that vary by country and region. 


  • Competitive salary and performance-based bonuses.
  • Comprehensive healthcare and wellness benefits.
  • Retirement savings plans.
  • Opportunities for professional development and career growth.
  • A collaborative and inclusive work culture.

Onboarding Specialist Job Description 3 (Marketing)

We at (Agency name) are renowned for our expertise in catering to a diverse range of B2B clients, including industry leaders such as (client names). Our agency’s client portfolio spans many industries, ranging from (industry 1) to (industry 2), and we remain firm in our commitment to delivering innovative solutions that consistently yield results in the B2B arena. 

If you are a professional well-versed in the intricacies of marketing dynamics within these industries, we encourage you to apply for the role of Onboarding Specialist.  In this role, you will seamlessly integrate new team members into our marketing fold. We expect you to make the journey of our new hires smoother and provide targeted support to address common challenges. Whether staying updated with the ever-evolving digital marketing trends or handling complex analytical tools, you must prepare them to succeed in every scenario.  

Key Responsibilities 

  • Craft and implement tailored onboarding initiatives designed specifically for our marketing department, ensuring new hires are well-prepared to meet the unique challenges of the B2B marketing landscape.
  • Lead orientation sessions that introduce new team members to our marketing department, its objectives, and key stakeholders.
  • Identify skill gaps specific to B2B marketing roles and coordinate specialized training sessions to bridge these gaps effectively.
  • Ensure new hires are proficient in marketing automation tools, platforms, and strategies.
  • Conduct mentorship programs to pair newcomers with seasoned B2B marketing professionals who can offer valuable guidance and support throughout their initial days with our agency.
  • Convey performance expectations, key performance indicators (KPIs), and career development prospects to new hires.


  • Bachelor’s degree in HR management, business administration, or a related field.
  • Previous experience in HR onboarding, ideally within a B2B marketing agency or marketing department.
  • Demonstrated understanding of B2B marketing concepts, tools, and strategies.
  • Adaptability to changing marketing trends and technologies.
  • Strong collaborative skills to work effectively with cross-functional teams.
  • Excellent communication, organizational, and interpersonal skills. 

Onboarding Specialist Job Description 4 (Healthcare) 

Our healthcare organization is a leading provider of medical services dedicated to delivering exceptional patient care. With a commitment to excellence, we continuously strive to maintain the highest industry standards while ensuring the privacy and well-being of our patients. As an HR Onboarding Specialist within our organization, your primary role is to guarantee that newly hired personnel in the healthcare sector receive thorough training, possess a clear comprehension of patient privacy regulations, and are fully prepared to deliver high-quality care. Your core responsibilities will involve seamless coordination with healthcare educators and meticulous adherence to healthcare industry standards to uphold the highest levels of compliance and service excellence.

Key Responsibilities

  • Facilitate the onboarding process for healthcare professionals, ensuring they receive comprehensive training and orientation regarding job responsibilities, healthcare policies, and patient privacy regulations.
  • Monitor and enforce compliance with healthcare industry standards, including HIPAA regulations, to maintain the highest levels of data security and patient confidentiality.
  • Work closely with healthcare educators and trainers to develop, update, and deliver effective training programs tailored to the specific needs of healthcare personnel.
  • Effectively communicate onboarding procedures, policies, and updates to new hires, department heads, and other relevant stakeholders.
  • Continuously assess and improve onboarding processes to enhance the quality of care provided by healthcare professionals.


  • Bachelor’s degree in HR, Healthcare Administration, or a related field.
  • Previous experience in healthcare onboarding.
  • Knowledge of healthcare regulations, such as HIPAA.
  • Strong organizational and multitasking skills.
  • Empathy and understanding of healthcare professionals’ needs.

Onboarding Specialist Job Description 5 (Retail)

At XYZ organization, we take immense pride in our unwavering dedication to providing exceptional customer experiences. To further bolster this commitment, we are currently seeking an Onboarding Specialist who can play a pivotal role in equipping our newly hired retail personnel with the necessary tools and knowledge to excel in delivering outstanding service to our valued customers. You will conduct comprehensive customer service training, ensuring that our new team members are well-versed in our inventory systems. Ultimately, you must ensure they are fully prepared and empowered to consistently provide our cherished customers the highest level of service.

Key Responsibilities

  • Develop and deliver comprehensive customer service training programs emphasizing the importance of creating a positive customer experience. 
  • Facilitate the understanding of inventory management systems and procedures, ensuring that new hires can efficiently manage stock and assist customers with product inquiries.
  • Instill a strong customer service orientation in all new employees to ensure they understand the importance of meeting and exceeding customer expectations. 
  • Ensure new hires are well-informed about company policies, procedures, and safety protocols, such as compliance with cash handling, returns, and customer interaction guidelines.
  • Establish a feedback loop with new hires to gather insights on the onboarding process and their initial experiences. 


  • Previous experience in onboarding within the retail industry, preferably with a focus on customer service and inventory management.
  • Proficiency in using Point-of-Sale (POS) systems and a solid understanding of their functionalities.
  • A genuine commitment to delivering exceptional customer service, with the ability to coach and inspire others to do the same.
  • The capability to thrive in a fast-paced retail environment, where adaptability and efficiency are essential qualities.

Build Highly-Skilled Teams With Automated Recruitment

Sourcing top talent with a well crafted Onboarding Specialist job description that fits your team’s needs is the key to high performance and innovation. Omni’s recruitment partners make building and advertising your talent search easy, sourcing and attracting talent to fit your company’s unique needs. 

Onboarding Specialist job description

With seamless integration capabilities, your shortlisted and hired talent from your Onboarding Specialist job description are automatically uploaded into your HR system, taking the administrative burden and manual entry errors out of the recruitment process. 

Learn more about how Omni’s automated system can streamline your entire employee lifecycle—from recruitment to onboarding and beyond.

Onboarding Specialist job description

Want to begin improving your onboarding experience today while you craft your perfect Onboarding Specialist job description?  Download our comprehensive Onboarding Kit for all the tools you’ll need to deepen engagement and provide a world-class company culture from day 1.

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