SOUTH-EAST Asia's largest lender DBS on Thursday said it is committed to hiring more than 2,000 people in Singapore this year, notwithstanding the current economic downturn caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
More than 1,000 of these job openings are new roles which are a mix of openings for fresh graduates to apply as trainees, as well as more specialised roles for seasoned professionals.
There will also be no change to DBS's annual internship programmes which are expected to offer some 400 roles in 2020, the lender said in a press statement, adding that these internships give students the opportunity to "put their academic skills to the test in a real-world work environment".
The bank has some 12,000 staff in Singapore, and said it has reassured staff that there will be no layoffs amid the tepid job landscape. It did not disclose how many people it usually hires in a year for comparison.
In line with DBS's ongoing digitalisation efforts, over a third - or more than 360 - of the new permanent roles being created this year are for seasoned professionals in growth technology areas. More than 300 of these new jobs are in the areas of UX/UI, data science, fraud detection, compliance, as well as consumer and institutional banking technology.
The bank is also looking to train and hire over 60 people in artificial intelligence, cloud computing, full stack development and data analytics through a range of specialised talent development programmes, namely the Technology in Finance Immersion Programme (TFIP) and the TechSkills Accelerator (TeSA) Mid-Career Advance. Both programmes aim to help seasoned professionals begin a technology career in financial services.
DBS is also recruiting more than 700 young talent in two main areas: specialised programmes and temporary traineeships.
The specialised programmes include: the bank's graduate associate programmes, which groom fresh graduates into future banking leaders; the applied wealth management track, which is open to students enrolled in Nanyang Business School's Bachelor of Business programme; as well as DBS's analytics capability enhancement programme and executive management associate programme, which cater to postgraduates.
DBS said the "more tech-inclined" can enrol in the Skill Enhancement Education and Development programme supported by TeSA, which trains those with less than two years of experience so they can build careers in roles such as development, DevOps and cyber security. In all, DBS expects to hire 200 people for these specialised programmes.
Meanwhile, its six to 12-month traineeships offer the possibility of conversion to a permanent role. As one of the pioneer host companies participating in the SGUnited Traineeships Programme, DBS will also offer 500 traineeships to recent and upcoming graduates from universities, polytechnics, the Institute of Technical Education and other private educational institutions.
"These traineeships allow young graduates to develop their skills professionally and gain valuable working experience, giving them a firmer foothold in the job market when the economy recovers," said the lender.
As for other roles across the bank, DBS said it will continue to hire "judiciously". It expects to make around 1,000 such hires in Singapore this year. Since the virus outbreak in February, the bank has hired close to 500 people for roles in client advisory, data, digital, technology as well as risk and control.
DBS's latest announcement on job openings follows an earlier commitment to protect the jobs of its existing workforce in Singapore. All employees - including branch staff affected by temporary branch closures amid the "circuit-breaker" restrictions - continue to remain on full pay.
DBS chief Piyush Gupta said: "While DBS is also prudent in our outlook, as a key employer in Singapore, it seemed right to us to not just continue with hiring for business-as-usual activities, but also to actively create new jobs where we can, so as to help more people tide through this difficult period."