SINGAPORE: A Singaporean took to social media to ask whether other Singaporeans preferred pay increments over a change in job title.

The response had a unified viewpoint in the comments sections, asserting that compensation supersedes fancy titles.


One Redditor said: “A promotion is always accompanied by increased responsibilities and workload, which usually implies longer working hours. Getting a pay raise without any promotion is the best. Work life balance is very important to me.”

Another Redditor commented: “Pay increment lah lol. Someone once told me this. Would you rather be an analyst earning 10k or director earning 10k. Analysts are better because expectations are lower and you can slack off more lol. Yet you get the money.”

Yet another added: “Title doesn’t matter. Take the increment. Update your LinkedIn with achievemebt. Look out for next opportunity.”

Job Title vs Pay Increment

While both factors carry weight in one’s career development and trajectory, people have been leaning over the significance of ‘pay’ for the last few years, largely owing to the cost of living crisis.

According to a Singapore salary survey conducted by recruitment firm Robert Walters in 2022, 78% of Singapore’s workforce said they would switch jobs if their pay did not keep up with inflation.

According to their most recent survey, fifty per cent of professionals anticipate a pay increase in 2024.

Why ‘Pay’ over Job titles?

Since salary directly impacts an employee’s performance and motivation to work, it is a crucial component of job satisfaction.

In addition, the pay you receive is a clear indication of your ‘market value’. Thus, people with higher incomes but lower titles can use this as leverage to eventually get higher titles in different companies.

Not to mention, greater pay also plays a critical role in surviving. A 10% salary increase is more beneficial to one’s situation than a promotion alone. 

Which is better for you?

According to Jobstreet, when it comes to deciding which is better for you, it’s important to consider multiple factors, such as:

Evaluate your financial situation. Are you the family breadwinner? Are you behind on your credit card payments? Do you have other debts to pay? Are you living from paycheck to paycheck?

If all your answers to these questions are ‘no’ and you can live with somewhat lower pay in exchange for better long-term growth opportunities, perhaps a better title would be a less risky path.

Find out your motivation. What motivates you more? Is it more savings and investments? Or do you aspire to have greater responsibilities at work?

Consider your mental health. Better job titles often mean more responsibility—are you ready for that right now? Or are you satisfied with your current workload?

Look at opportunities. A catchy job title might occasionally be an allure to managers or recruiters from competing firms. Your title may indicate that you are eligible for a promotion down the road, a lateral move, or even better employment opportunities elsewhere.

Gain more respect. You might be able to express yourself more confidently in your new role and earn more respect from the staff if you assume a higher title. Is this important for you?

Consult with loved ones. Consult with reliable friends and family members before making a decision. Ask them which option they think you should go for. It is not necessary to follow their advice, but hearing a different take on the situation could help you focus and find out what you prefer.