Amid the difficult economic environment, one job that is always open to able-bodied Singaporeans is a career with one of the nation’s largest organisations: the Singapore Army.
Here’s how much in salary, sign-on bonuses, and other monetary incentives you can earn if you choose to sign on with the Singapore Army – either as a commissioned Officer, a Specialist (and eventual Warrant Officer) or a Military Expert.
How Much Does A Singapore Army Officer Earn?
Depending on academic qualifications and vocation, officer cadet trainees will begin earning a monthly salary of between $1,990 to $4,890. Once they are commissioned as officers, they would be earning between $2,140 to $5,170 for the next few years of their careers up till the rank of Captain.
According to MINDEF, officers with “strong military and academic standings” will be accorded additional top-ups to the standard salaries. Commissioned officers may also be eligible for individual performance bonuses.
Furthermore, upon completion of the 6th year of service, officers will receive a SAVER bonus of 6-months of their gross monthly salary. SAVER is a scheme that provides regulars with financial security upon retirement from service.
As members of the public service, Army officers are also enrolled into the MediSave-cum-Subsidised Outpatient (MSO) medical benefits scheme, under which they will receive an additional 2% of their gross monthly salary into their CPF MediSave account. They will also receive a subsidy of $500 for medical expenses every calendar year. If unused, the first $350 would be credited into their MediSave account, while the remaining $150 will be reimbursed in cash.
Officers are also eligible for the Army’s Flexible Benefits Scheme (FLEX) of between $600 to $1,000 per year, which they can use to pay for insurance, vacations, education needs of themselves or their dependant.
How Much Does A Singapore Army Specialist/Warrant Officer Earn?
Those who sign on as an Army regular under the Specialist/Warrant Officer track can receive a one-time bonus of $20,000 to $30,000 (not applicable for those on educational sponsorship).
As trainees undergo training to become Army Specialists (and eventual Warrant Officers), they earn $1,530 and up (as Recruits), and in a matter of months earn between $1,640 to $2,730 (as Specialist Cadets). Once they earn their stripes and begin serving as Third Sergeants, they start to earn a basic pay of between $1,750 to $2,910.
Unlike their commissioned officer counterparts, Specialists/Warrant Officers may receive mid-year, end-year, and performance bonuses, as well as yearly merit increments based on performance for the last work-year.
But like their commissioned officer counterparts, regular Specialists/Warrant Officers are also enrolled into the MediSave-cum-Subsidised Outpatient (MSO) medical benefits scheme as well as receiving benefits under the Army’s Flexible Benefits Scheme (FLEX).
How Much Does A Singapore Army Military Expert Earn?
The third (and newest) career track that uniformed Army personnel can join is that of the Military Expert (ME), who provide valuable subject matter expertise to troops in the field, in areas such as in Engineering, Medical and Music.
As you can see, O Level and Diploma holders enrolled as Military Musician’s start to earn between $1,610 to $2,400, while those in the Engineer or Medical track earn between $1,700 to $5,300, depending on qualifications.
MEs who perform well can receive performance bonuses, annual merit increments, as well as promotion increments upon advancing in rank or grade.
To encourage MEs to stay with the Army, attractive EXperts Continuous Engagement and Learning (EXCEL) bonuses are given out at ages 32 (12-months bonus), 40 (8-months bonus), and 50 (8-months bonus). For the first bonus at age 32, specific criteria (such as service length) must be met, or the bonus might be pro-rated.
MEs are not enrolled in SAVER, and instead, receive full CPF contributions like private sector employees. But MEs are public officers, so they too will be enrolled in the MediSave-cum-Subsidised Outpatient (MSO) medical benefits scheme and also receive benefits under the Army’s Flexible Benefits Scheme (FLEX).
An Exciting And Rewarding Career In A Premier Organisation
Amidst a difficult job market, a career in the Army provides one with financial stability, a clear career progression, and the opportunity to serve and lead in one of the nation’s premier organisations – one that has produced leaders of the highest calibre who have gone on to take on top positions in the private, public and political spheres.
If you ever considered a career in the Army, perhaps now is as good a time as any to seriously explore that possibility.
DollarsAndSense.sg aims to provide interesting, bite-sized and relevant financial articles.
Learn together with like-minded Singaporeans at the Personal Finance Discussion SG Facebook Group by discussing a range of personal finance topics.
If you have not done so, subscribe to our free e-newsletter to receive exclusive content not available anywhere else.