Employers of Record (EORs) in Singapore: Everything you need to know

A guide to working with EOR services in Singapore.

When growing and expanding your business, you want to be able to hire the best talent for each new role, and do so in a way that’s manageable and sustainable given your infrastructure, budget, and experience. Now that businesses across the world have embraced remote work, seen its numerous benefits, and verified its efficacy, expanding a business’s scope to an international scale is not just possible, but also an attractive option for many.

For businesses looking to tap into the Asia Pacific market, a popular choice is to start operating in Singapore. Comparable in size and population to New York City, this island city-state offers a slew of benefits to burgeoning companies, from comparatively low employer taxes to a growing, diverse, and highly skilled workforce.

However, hiring in Singapore does pose some challenges, especially if your organization isn’t yet equipped to handle the myriad complexities of international hires, including country-specific documentation, onboarding, compliance, payroll, and benefits. For many companies, working with an employer of record (EOR) in Singapore is the natural choice, especially if it’s your first time hiring abroad or you’re just new to hiring in Singapore. Let’s take a look at what you need to know about using EOR services in Singapore.

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What is an employer of record?

When hiring internationally, keep in mind that each country, region, and even municipality can have different laws and regulations governing employment, worker rights, and compliance. These nuances are often more than most companies are equipped to navigate.

This is where EORs come in. An employer of record is an entity within a country or region that can function as the legal employer of a worker on behalf of another business. The latter gains access to a talented pool of employees at the cost of a fee paid to the EOR for managing their employment.

What are the benefits of using an employer of record?

To hire international employees without an EOR or similar service, a business first needs to establish a legal entity in the target country or countries, open local bank accounts, set up local payroll and benefits, and build a legal team. This last point is particularly important and complex. Employers need to ensure they stay compliant with all local employment laws, including those dealing with benefits, payroll, taxes, intellectual property, and more. When starting from scratch, setting up a new entity can take several months, or even years, and it’s a major financial investment.

Using an EOR means there’s no need to go through this complex process. The EOR acts as the legal employer on your behalf and handles all the above details. This speeds up the hiring process, ensures compliance with local laws, and simplifies payroll and benefits administration. 

A few things to know about hiring in Singapore

Before onboarding remote talent from Singapore, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the employment landscape so you know what to expect. This allows you to make your position attractive to top talent and ensures you’ll get the right caliber of people applying to work with your team. Here are a few things to know before you start hiring in Singapore.


Singapore is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world, and its workforce is both highly educated and highly skilled. Singapore recognizes four official national languages: Chinese, English, Malay, and Tamil. This means that much of the population is multilingual, which allows for greater flexibility in how your company does business and who your company can communicate with during the growth process. The island also has an estimated population of around 6.5 million people.

Payment requirements and expectations

Singapore’s national currency is the Singapore dollar, or SGD. Unlike some countries, Singapore does not have a statutory minimum wage. Instead, wages are typically determined through negotiation between employers and employees, or by industry-specific agreements.

The standard workweek in Singapore runs from Monday through Friday. An employee should not be obligated to work:
(a) for more than 6 consecutive hours without a break for leisure; and
(b) for more than 8 hours in a single day, or exceed 44 hours in any given week.

Employers are required to pay wages on a monthly basis, and, while it’s not legally required, many employers offer 13th and 14th month payments. These are lump sum payments representing a month’s wages that are paid out in addition to the year’s salary, usually at the end of the year. Likewise, periodic bonuses aren’t required, but are often expected in competitive employment offers.

If you want to understand the cost of employing someone there, check out our free Singapore employment cost calculator for a detailed breakdown of the hiring costs.


Employees in Singapore are generally entitled to 11 national holidays a year, and many employers offer additional company holidays or floating holidays.

Employees in Singapore have a vacation entitlement that begins with at least 7 days off after completing 12 months of service with an employer. This allowance increases by 1 additional day for every subsequent year of continuous employment, reaching a maximum of 14 days after 8 years. Despite this legal requirement, many employers opt to offer the maximum 14 days of vacation from the outset of employment.

Regarding eligibility and accrual, employees start becoming eligible for partial annual leave after their initial 3 months of employment. Their vacation time is prorated until they reach the full entitlement at 12 months of service.

As for sick leave, employees are not entitled to paid sick leave until after three months of service. At that point, they get five days of non-hospitalized or 15 hospitalized days. This increases monthly until they reach six months of service, at which point they’re guaranteed 14 non-hospitalized and 60 hospitalized days.

Female employees who are working mothers have the choice of taking 16 weeks of Government-Paid Maternity Leave (GPML) if their child holds Singaporean citizenship. However, for foreign residents, the entitlement is for 12 weeks of maternity leave.

To learn more about Singaporean employment regulations and best practices, check out our complete guide to hiring employees in Singapore.

Simplify hiring in Singapore with Oyster

As a global employment platform, Oyster operates worldwide, facilitating compliant hiring in over 180 countries and payment in 140+ currencies. Oyster simplifies the process of hiring abroad, providing comprehensive EOR services tailored to your needs.

With our expertise in Singaporean employment regulations and our established network of local partners, we ensure a seamless onboarding experience for your international hires. We handle everything from crafting personalized employment contracts in local languages to managing work permissions and payroll details. You’ll have a dedicated point of contact for both your company and the employee, making it effortless to schedule onboarding meetings and training sessions.

By leveraging Oyster’s EOR services, you can focus on what you do best—growing your business—while we handle the intricacies of international hiring. Whether it's your first venture into overseas recruitment or you’re expanding your presence in Singapore, Oyster is here to support your global expansion journey. Partner with us today and unlock the full potential of your international talent acquisition strategy. 

Experience hassle-free hiring and build a global workforce with Oyster.

About Oyster

Oyster is a global employment platform designed to enable visionary HR leaders to find, engage, pay, manage, develop, and take care of a thriving distributed workforce. Oyster lets growing companies give valued international team members the experience they deserve, without the usual headaches and expense.

Oyster enables hiring anywhere in the world—with reliable, compliant payroll, and great local benefits and perks.

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