5 Unexpected Industries That Will Be Bullish in 2018

By the SMU Social Media Team

With Singapore’s economy humming along nicely, the overall employment outlook is expected to improve this year.

But to really get ahead, it is important not just to find a job but one in an industry that is bursting with potential. Here are five unexpected sectors to be bullish about, and how to land a position in one of them.




Singapore may not have had many biotech success stories but it is still a leading biomedical hub with good employment prospects because of high research and development expenditure.

Over the years, the sector has surged as global drug companies seek to expand their range of new drugs, with Singapore planning to commit $4 billion in health and biomedical sciences research.

And careers in biotechnology involve more than just lab work to develop drugs. Opportunities include sales and marketing, research and development, manufacturing, and quality control and assurance.

Between year 2000 and 2010, employment in biomedical R&D more than doubled from 2,200 to over 5,000, says the EDB. In biomedical manufacturing output, it went from 6,000 to 14,000 over the same period.

With billions of dollars committed to continued support of research, innovation and enterprise activities, Singapore’s biotechnology industry should grow from strength to strength.

Potential jobs: Biomedical engineer, clinical researcher, laboratory specialist, manufacturing & quality control manager, sales & marketing manager




Green energy

For a tiny country like Singapore with no natural resources, green energy is critical because it is sustainable energy. And career opportunities abound as the republic invests heavily in sustainability, with new public sector research and development funding of over $900 million.

Renewable energy sources like solar, wind and fuel cells will lead to demand for energy management of smart grids and energy storage; power system planning; market development; data analytics; and even financial services that offer financial instruments such as project bonds and green business trusts.

Potential jobs: Renewable energy analyst, solar energy systems engineer, environment technology manager, energy management engineer, green building manager




Content marketing

Like marketing and telling stories? Then you might just be able to combine the two by getting into content marketing.

Use words, photos or video, or a combination of all three, to incorporate into marketing strategy and reach out to customers on their smartphones and computers.

Some knowledge of the programming language HTML will be helpful, as well as photo and video editing, content distribution and website analytics.

Content marketing is especially significant when you consider that Singaporeans spent about S$4 billion shopping online in 2016. Content can differentiate a brand from its competitors and make a bigger impact. It can help to develop a relationship between the company and customer by segmenting, personalising and adding value to a product or service to a prospective buyer.

Potential jobs: SEO & SEM specialist, google analytics specialist, content writer, social media marketer, pay-per-click specialist





As the cost of drones falls, more people and industries are using these unmanned aerial vehicles to take photos and videos or for goods delivery, in every industry from property to offshore and marine.

First of all, you will have to learn how to fly them, and fly them well. And as a drone operator, you also have to take note of restrictions like security areas and drone weight under Singapore law.

But operating a drone itself is merely the means to an end because what the drone is capable of is infinitely more interesting, especially in the areas of software and data.

Apart from commercial applications, drones are also operated by the military and other government agencies primarily with the purpose of data collection.

There are numerous opportunities for the use of drones as computers that fly—to collect, track, analyse and manage data. In fact, the Singapore Government has signalled the potential of drones as part of the Singapore smart nation strategy, particularly in fields of urban infrastructure management, farming, public safety and disaster response. That makes becoming a drone pilot or engineer an attractive option.

Potential jobs: Software developers, geospatial data specialists, drone pilot training programme provider, marketing specialist introducing drone-centric solutions to various industries



Artificial Intelligence

Needless to say, artificial intelligence is key in Singapore’s journey to becoming a smart nation. And the AI industry requires people like data scientists, research engineers, software engineers and technical specialists to get there.

To develop Singapore’s AI ecosystem, various government agencies have a generous budget at their disposal—$150 million over five years starting in 2017.

Potential jobs: Software analyst/developer, computer scientist/ engineer, algorithm specialist, researcher, mechanical/electrical engineer