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A Quick and Simple Guide to Finding a Good Maid Agency in Singapore

A Quick and Simple Guide to Finding a Good Maid Agency in Singapore

Maids in singapore: the true cost

If you’re on the look out for a good maid agency in Singapore, you need to ensure that you find a supplier that is legal, good at what they do and trustworthy (do they exist?). But perform a simple online search for “Maid agency in Singapore” and you’ll quickly realise that trying to separate the wheat from the chaff is the equivalent to attempting to read some of Plato’s works.

Want some help? Check out our quick and simple guide to cutting the crap and finding the good maid agencies that stand out from the rest.

How to Find a Good Maid Agency in Singapore

Forget Google. You should start your search on the Employment Agency Search database that is provided by the Ministry of Manpower. Select the foreign domestic worker button and hit the submit button.

How to use the employment agency database


That was the easy bit. You will now find yourself staring at a ton of numbers that probably mean nothing whatsoever to you. Here’s what the data is telling you.

License issued

This tells you how long the agency has been in operation. You ideally want a helper agency that has a long, established history of operations in Singapore.

Why should you care? If an agency has been around for a long time, this tells you two things. First, they know what they are doing. Second, their continued operation provides you with some security that they haven’t behaved illegally and/or flouted government rules and regulations in the past.

Demerit points

If an employment agent breaches the Employment Agency Act or any of the associated rules and conditions, they will be issued with demerit points. You should immediately rule out any agencies that have demerit points. In short, this means that they have been up to no good. 

Why should you care? Agencies that have demerit points should be instantly struck off your short list. They have got on the wrong side of the government for one reason or another and therefore should be avoided. Stick with the guys you can trust.

Retention rate

The FDW retention rate is the percentage of the total helpers placed who have remained with the same employer for 12 months or more since being placed by the agency. The higher the number, the better. If you see a retention rate of 80%, this means that 80% of the maids who have been processed through the agent have remained with the employer with whom they were placed. Two things to bear in mind:

  1. Retention rates are not generally high. The number of people who come and go in Singapore means that there can be a high turnover of employers and this impacts retention rates. A retention rate of around 50% would be considered to be pretty good.
  2. You should take placement volume into consideration as well as retention rate. There’s no point in selecting an agency that has a retention rate of 100% if they have only placed one employee.

Why should you care? A higher retention rate means that the agency have high-quality helpers who do a good job of meeting their employer’s needs. Hence, they stay put.

Transfer rate

The transfer rate is the percentage of all helpers who have been moved from one employer to another three times or more within the last twelve months. High transfer rates means that the agency regularly transfer maids from one employer to another. This should be a red flag. Look for a low FDW transfer rate; ideally less than 8%.

Why should you care? You have to question why helpers are being transferred at a high rate. Is it a reflection of the fact that the agency doesn’t offer high-quality maids? Or could it be that they are ineffective in their ability to match employer requirements with their available resources? Either way, you’re presumably looking for a helper who will stay out for quite some time, right? 

CASE Accreditation

To achieve CASE accreditation maid agencies need to demonstrate fair trading and transparency in their dealings with customers. You can check whether an employment agency is accredited with case here: CASE search.

Why should you care? CASE-accredited companies can be trusted more than those who haven’t received accreditation. Furthermore, in the ghastly event that you do fall out with your agency, they’ll be more likely to give you your money back as opposed to risking losing their CASE accreditation.

So, in your quest for the perfect maid agency, you are looking for the following:

Qualities of a good maid agency

finding a good maid agency checklist

 Can’t be bothered with the search? We’ve done the hard work for you. Check out our guide to the ten best maid agencies in Singapore.

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