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Singapore is Asia’s least risky city

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Singapore poses some of the least risks when it comes to the recruitment and relocation of employees globally.

The city state also has the honour of being the only Asian city in the top five of Aon Hewitt’s 2013 People Risk Index, coming in at second place. The index measures risk by analysing factors such as demographics, access to education, talent development, employment practices and government regulations.

New York maintained its top spot for the second year running, with Toronto, London and Montreal rounding up the top five lowest risk cities in the world.

Richard Payne, talent and rewards practice leader for Aon Hewitt in Asia Pacific, said companies are beginning to notice the change in people risk management over the last few years – a shift propelled by changes in the business environment.

“Driven by a need to do more with less, business leaders have to be more innovative around how they invest; this has had an impact on how they think about talent sourcing and work force planning,” Payne said.

Angeline Chua, senior assistant director for recruitment at Singapore Prison Service (SPS), said both line managers and senior management are involved in the organisation’s recruitment process.

She said this is important in ensuring they are hiring people with the right aptitude and competencies to carry out the mission of SPS. “We have incorporated all the required non-trainable traits that include our core values into our interview evaluation form to sieve out the right candidates during the interview,” Chua said.

APAC countries saw minimal changes between last year and this year’s rankings, a result of the region’s stable economies and overall growth. But Payne said leaders have to keep in mind the impact pro-business employment policies have on people risk in order to maintain their rankings.

“Where government policies support a more flexible approach to talent immigration, employment practices and the provision of social welfare, these cities are able to attract and retain a talent supply critical for businesses,” he said.

The top 10 riskiest cities were Luanda, Angola; Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea; Lagos, Nigeria; Dhaka, Bangladesh; Tripoli, Libya; Karachi, Pakistan; Baghdad, Iraq; Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; Sana’a, Yemen; and Damascus, Syria.

But Payne said proper education and talent development structures have to be in place in order for these cities to flourish and avoid a “surplus of low skilled workers and a shortage of highly educated professional talent”.

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