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Job Advertisements


Are you hiring? Fair hiring practices do not only apply to the Shortlisting and Interview stage. Before you post an advertisement on the position you wish to fill, consider if the job advertisement is in line with fair and progressive employment principles. Take time to review the Recruitment Section of the Tripartite Guidelines on Fair Employment Practices.
A fair and progressive job advertisement clearly outlines what a candidate is required to share: the qualifications, skills, knowledge and experience. These must be relevant to the job. Should you need to include a special requirement or are asking for information that may be viewed as discriminatory, do ensure that this is indeed needed for the job and is in no way discriminatory. Provide the reason for the special requirement or any data collection. This way, you can be sure that the job requirements in your advertisement are well understood.
You should review all job advertisements before posting to ensure that they are non-discriminatory.
Why should you adopt principles of fair and progressive employment when creating and posting a job ad? For one, this will reflect positively on your company and will help you attract a bigger pool of eligible candidates. 
Words And Phrases To Avoid In Job Advertisements
How would you know if your job advertisement upholds fair and progressive employment principles?
In general, job criteria that discriminate against nationality, age, race, gender, religion, marital status and family responsibilities, or disability, do not reflect fair and progressive employment principles. 
To provide feedback on discriminatory job advertisements, please click here.
Words or phrases that exclude Singaporeans, or indicate preference for non-Singaporeans, or which could be perceived to be discriminatory should not be used.
Avoid using the following:
  • Non-Singaporeans / SPRs / foreigners / international candidates / [specific nationality] / preferred / welcome / only / can also apply / will also be considered
  • 新公民 (“New citizen”) preferred / welcome / only
  • Specific nationality in describing job roles or titles, for example Italian chef preferred, Spanish secretary welcome
  • Language
    • Native English speaker preferred / welcome / only
    • Candidates with Korean as first language preferred
    • Candidates’ whose Mother Tongue is Tagalog will have an added advantage
  • Work Passes & Permits
    • EP / S Pass / WP / DP / LTSVP Holders preferred / welcome / only
    • Work passes will be applied for successful candidates
    • S Pass quota available
  • Others
    • Completed, are exempted from, or are not liable for National Service
The job advertisement must be in the language of the advertisement media.
If the job advertisement specifies proficiency in a particular language or has other language text, employers should provide the job reason.
Avoid stating a language without giving justification for this being a job requirement: 
  • Bilingual in English and Mandarin/Malay/Tamil 
  • Native English language/speaking 
  • Mandarin/Malay/Tamil language/speaking
  • Mandarin/Malay/Tamil language/speaking is an advantage 
  • Tagalog/Thai language/speaking
Words or phrases that suggest preference for job candidates of a particular age group should not be used (unless there are legal or regulatory requirements, which must be stated). 
Avoid using :
  • Minimum aged 21 and above
  • Below 30 only
  • Age 25-30 only
  • Youthful working environment
Race should not be a criterion for the selection of job candidates as multi-racialism is a fundamental principle in Singapore.
Avoid using :
  • Chinese/Malay/Indian preferred
  • Chinese/Malay/Indian only
  • Chinese/Malay/Tamil speaking environment 
Religion should not be a criterion for recruitment except in cases where employees have to perform religious functions or fulfil religious certification standards as part of the job requirement.
Avoid using :
  • Christian/Buddhist/Muslim/Hindu preferred
  • Christian/Buddhist/Muslim/Hindu only
Words or phrases that suggest preference for job candidates of a particular gender should not be used. For gender-centric job titles (e.g. draughtsman, chambermaid), you should state that “both genders may apply”.   
Avoid using :
  • Strong guys needed
  • Preferably female
  • Female working environment
Marital Status
This is generally an irrelevant criterion in employment as jobs can be performed equally well by either married or single persons.
Avoid using :
  • Preferably singles
If you spot a discriminatory job advertisement, you can bring this to our attention by providing details below. 
We will contact the advertiser directly on the matter. Thank you for your feedback.
By submitting this form, you hereby acknowledge that you have consented to our processing of your data for the purposes described in our Personal Data Policy.  
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