Support Site for The Unemployed & Underemployed
Tuesday January 16th 2018

Indonesian permanent resident gave up CSM $4100 salary to enter banking industry

Hi Gilbert,

I have just come across your website today and I found some of the posts to be an eye opener. Keep up the good work!

I am interested to read your book so it would be great if you can email me the online copy of your book.

Some background info on myself:

I am a Singapore PR (Indonesian nationality) who has been living here for 16 years.

I am 31 years old and I have just graduated with a Master of Science in Finance in March 2011.

I took up the part time Bachelor and Masters programme with Kaplan Institute while I was still at my previous job.

I have always had the desire to enter the financial sector and I wanted a career switch after my graduation which led me to the decision to resign from my previous job rather abruptly.

My last position was a Customer Service Manager in a printing and  publishing brokerage and I was earning SGD 4,100 per month.

That was my first and only job upon graduation from Singapore Polytechnic (with a Diploma in Marketing) and although I was earning a pretty good salary, the company was going nowhere and I had no room for career advancement due to the small size of the company (10 staff in total).

After being with the company for more than 8 years, I decided to leave in April.

I have been unemployed and looking for work for 2 months now, and there are several areas that I hope you can offer some advice or comment on.

1) I have seen many advertisements from recruitment agency for entry level positions in local / foreign banks and while some say Fresh graduates are welcome to apply, there are others who specify or require “Fresh Graduates with relevant experience”. I attach one example here for your reference.

This is quite baffling to me because I had thought that Fresh graduate means someone who just comes out of school and has no working experience?

Is it fair for recruiter to put a requirement such as this?

2) I have sent numerous job applications for banking positions (non-sales) and I have not received a positive response thus far.

I am aware that switching from a printing industry to a banking industry would require me to take a considerable pay cut as I have no relevant experience in and I will be competing against fresh graduates who are much younger than myself.

I have been gradually adjusting my salary expectations downwards and it is now at SGD 3100 per rmonth (negotiable) which is already 25% lower from my previous salary.

I am interested to work in the middle office or operations position within a bank (i.e. non-sales), so I wonder if you can offer some advice on the appropriate salary range that I should expect?

3) I attached my cover letter and resume here, and I would be grateful if you can offer any input on how I can improve or make them more effective.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Many thanks in advance.




Hi Hendy

Thanks for your mail.

Normally we won’t assist PR  here and our services are catered more to jobless Singaporeans.

Nevertheless, I will try to answer your mail regarding the advertisement part.

Though we have strict legislation on proper advertisement here it is seldom enforced.

In one particular instance, our Manpower Minister even has to ask the management to take down a discriminatory advertisement that only wants to hire PRC executive!

Regarding your next question on working in the banking sector, I realise that the banks use a lot of recruiters to bring in foreign executives so my take is to check which particular recruitor they use and then apply through that recruiting company.

Banks actually pay the best salaries here due to a expansionary  trend  and lowering your salary may not be advisable.. Of course, you may not be able to get back your decent $4100 pay check earned  previously after working for 8 years.

Of course, foreign banks will pay much better salaries than our local banks so do aim for foreign banks that want to expand their presence in Asia.

There is also some regional travelling if you work with foreign banks as they may want to spread their wings in the surrounding region.

However, its your personal choice if you want to ask for a reduced salary  in order to easily grab the next job.

I always believe that banks can pay if they want you.

Do also check around with friends who are working in the banking sector as a lot of jobs go by word of mouth to reduce manpower staffing charges and also normally staff will want to recommend friends who are better workers so that they will not be implicated.

I apologise that we are not able to extend  any of our services to you due to the fact that you are a PR. I hope that you won’t feel offended.

All the best for your job search ahead.

Gilbert Goh


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Reader Feedback

8 Responses to “Indonesian permanent resident gave up CSM $4100 salary to enter banking industry”

  1. msia says:

    another so called “ft” who should just go back to his own country.

    • Derrick says:

      • Group: Singapore Careers
      • Discussion: I’m working on a large scale hiring project in Quality, Manufacturing, and Engineering at the Sr level in Singapore. Connect with me if interested in hearing more about these opportunities.
      Hi Scott… I have completed my MBA in marketing & finance with over 6 years experience in the oil & gas industry.

      Kindly go through my profile and please forward your mail id.


      Posted by Sandeep Shankar

    • Derrick says:

      Tons of jobs given to International headhunter to employ non-Singapore.

      go to, look for singapore career

  2. Anon says:

    1. This guy still refuse to become citizen even after enjoying subsidised secondary school and polytechnic, as well as subsidised govt hospitals. ICA will have send him at least 5 invitation letters over the last 8 years to convert, but still refuse.

    2. He kena conned into private degree mill. Employers don’t accept degree mills for good-paying jobs.

    3. He is dreaming if he thinks banks will pay him $3.1K for sub-standard degree and zero relevant experience and 31 yrs old. Banks can easily hire 22 yr old fresh degree holders with the right qualifications and have done banking internships for $2.5K.

    4. He can try going to Jarkata and get into Indo bank. If he’s lucky he can get a position paying 7,500,000 rupiah a month (S$1K a month).

  3. jj says:

    PR is still foreigners.

    Don’t know why PAP likes them so much that foreigners enjoyed so many benefits. Don’t know why PAP always like to claim that foreigners are talents, now foreigners also claimed they are talents too. All complaining if S’pore gov control them from working here then it is a great loss for S’pore. Even e2i/wda also provide help to PR to assist them to find jobs.

    So where is all the local S’pore talents after all these years of education, training & working experience? PAP make it as if there is no local talents or no suitable local talents. PAP always like to mixed S’poreans & PR together claiming S’pore has low jobless rate & we have many millionaires here.

    Now PR also claimed they are discriminated as second class citizens after starting lossing the much enjoyed benefits. When did PR became S’poreans?

    Even big countries like USA, UK also want to stop foreigners to come snatch jobs with the their citizens too. PRC also forced companies to buy some kind of social insurance for employed foreign stff to built up the labour cost so that companies will favour in hiring more of their locals over foreign staff. You see even PRC also took up steps to protect their own locals.

    S’pore is a small island with limited resources, with thousands of dip/deg graduates graduating each year from gov or private schools. Now even some cleaners, security guards, taxi drivers also have dip/deg (up to Phd).

    When comes to issues like implementing minimum wage, shorten daily working hours & working days, increment of wage, social benefits to the poor etc. PAP will start to come out with many reasons why we shouldn’t do this & why we shouldn’t do that. PAP is too pro employers and they are also the biggest employer in S’pore.

    PAP also foolish to think that private sectors will 100% follow what they have suggested & implemented. Here you said should give increment, over at the other side private sectors cut wage. Some will give increment but they also increase working days or working hours. In the end all also back to square one. Where got improvement to help the working poor?

  4. Tim says:

    Wow, lived here for 16 years and still a PR. Government should set a limit to PR term to 5 years. After that convert to citizenship and serve NS if still less than 40 years old. Otherwise the PR is converted to employment pass.

  5. Sg_1 says:

    In 5 years’ time, PR will become new citizens and
    Will 25,000 per year, there will be 125,000 more votes,
    Or least 100K votes for the ruling party.
    That will be enough to win at 55% mandate.
    There maybe 10K Sg migrating over 5 years,
    Anyway, they are the ones, the govt does not
    Want as they will not vote for the ruling govt.
    And the Sg employers will continue to employ
    Ft and the cycle continues.
    The unemployed sg get loan from loan sharks, forced tO be runners,
    Get caught, go to jail and taxpayers pay to feed them
    And the ft pay less tax on double taxation agreement with foreign
    Countries where the fts come from
    The fts continue to shit that sg ppl are useless as one ft says
    The country is like a toilet, u only stay in as long as is required
    And off to Canada or Aust.
    The cycle repeats.
    The lowest group of Sg will become retards
    The middle group are wasted
    The elite sg group belongs to the govt , 5 %
    New citizens join the civil servants.
    What happens to me?
    I am not in Sg now and hopfully be in Africa or China or Philippines
    If i cannot continue to stay in europe
    You can go to Aust or NZ if u think is great, Which I have been

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