Almost 1-in-2 Singaporeans Plan to be Self-Employed During the Next 10 Years

Singapore, October 20, 2016 -- Fueled by technology that has made entrepreneurship easier than ever, a strong desire for autonomy, and a willingness to try establishing a business again in the event of failure, the number of professionals looking to create their own business or be self-employed has spiked, according to a new global survey commissioned by GoDaddy.
Conducted by Morar Consulting and Vrge Analytics, the research surveyed 7,291 professionals, including 2,707 current small business owners or self-employed individuals, in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Hong Kong, India, Mexico, Singapore, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
The research found that 36 percent of the respondents globally plan to either start a small business, or be self-employed within the next 10 years. In Singapore, 41 percent of respondents surveyed plan to do the same. This is especially true of Millennials, with 50 percent globally, and a staggeringly high 74 percent locally saying they plan to be full time entrepreneurs during the same time period. In fact, 32 percent of Millennials surveyed in Singapore started their current business while they were still in school. That makes them sixteen times more likely to pursue entrepreneurship as a career than their Gen X counterparts did while still pursuing their studies. This shift from a more conservative and risk-averse mindset to choosing the formerly lesser-travelled path of entrepreneurship demonstrates a change in public perception towards self-employment.
“Entrepreneurship is one of the core tenets of Singapore’s economy,” said Roger Chen, Vice President of Asia, GoDaddy. “We believe that the results from this survey illustrate the direction of entrepreneurship in Singapore. Millennials today are more open to considering entrepreneurship as a viable career, and we hope that our insights can help them in identifying the right tools and trends that can help take their businesses to greater success.”
Technology as a Key Enabler of Businesses

What are some of the driving forces behind this growing decision to pursue entrepreneurship? Workers say technology empowers; the survey showed that 91 percent of respondents in Singapore found technology made starting a business easier, while close to half (45 percent) preferred the “do-it-yourself” model for handling their tech needs, signifying ease of use. 57 percent said that official websites and social media are the most attractive channels to customers. As technological advancement progresses and more individuals begin applying new technologies (cloud, social media, mobile) to their entrepreneurial ambitions, the barrier of entry to entrepreneurship becomes significantly lowered. This ease has caused an influx of entrepreneurs into both local and global economies.
Autonomy Drives Entrepreneurship
Another driving force is the ability to work autonomously. The survey found that flexibility is the #1 driver for Singaporeans to become an entrepreneur. People want the ability to work when they want, where they want, and how they want. Flexibility (35 percent) trumped both money (24 percent) and not worrying about corporate layoffs (15 percent) by a wide margin.
Anticipating the future: On the wishlists of Singaporean entrepreneurs
The results found that 68 percent of Singaporean entrepreneurs desire for their business to have international reach. This can only be made possible with technology, with 79 percent agreeing that the use of technology creates a business quickly and has an ability to reach a wider customer base.
Challenges faced by these entrepreneurs included a lack of financial capital, expertise in specific topics, resources and financing, and human capital, in descending order of difficulty. This might have prompted 57 percent of Singapore respondents to opine that the government needs to be doing more to promote entrepreneurship, through avenues such as the provision of more programmes or an increase in funding. Additionally, 57 percent of entrepreneurs in Singapore believe that the government should make changes to laws and regulations relating to the sharing economy, in favor of growth.
Tips for small business owners and entrepreneurs
GoDaddy identifies three key takeaways and tips that are vital for local entrepreneurs and small business owners to help stay ahead of the competition:
1.    Set up an official business website: The largest percentage (41%) of Singapore business owners felt that their primary channel to establish an online presence was through a website.
2.    Make use of new technologies: Expand your customer reach and become more efficient through the use of new technologies. 67% of entrepreneurs surveyed found that technology tools that help them market better, get found online, and make their business more efficient and cost effective aid them in becoming the most successful entrepreneur they can be.
3.    Embrace the dynamic changes in technology and learn to adapt: 79% of entrepreneurs surveyed who embraced dynamic changes in technology were of the opinion that it positively affected their business. Technology is continuously evolving – if entrepreneurs and business owners do not learn to embrace and integrate these changes into their businesses, they will find that they miss out where others are reaping benefits.
Overall, the global research painted a picture of a growing trend: the world’s oldest and youngest generations of workers are choosing to follow their dreams and passions by acting on their ideas and setting up their own businesses, propelled and aided by a vast array of technological tools.

The full Entrepreneur Global Survey can be downloaded HERE.

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