High Job Demand for Computing Professionals in Malaysia
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The gap between the demand for information and computer technology (ICT) talent and the supply of that talent is large.
According to Frost and Sullivan’s Digital Talent Report commissioned by Malaysia Digital Economy Corp (MDEC) in 2017, Malaysia’s digital talent demand was expected to grow by 15% annually, that would require more than 540,000 jobs by 2020.
The study indicates that the existing situation cannot even supply half of the demand by 2020, about 500,000 human capital educated in science and technology will be needed by the country. From this number, at least 30,000 graduates are required in the ICT job market.
As a key enabler of IR4.0 (Fourth Industrial Revolution), it is critical that we prepare a strong talent pipeline to harness the socio–economic opportunities that come with digitalisation and smart technologies.
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What are the ICT Jobs in Demand in Malaysia?
The World Economic Forum estimates that whilst 75 million existing roles may decline by 2022, it was also projected that 133 million new roles will emerge as smart technologies disrupt most if not all industries.
These emerging roles were related to cybersecurity, data science, Artificial Intelligence (AI), software development and digital transformation. Other fast–growing tech careers are in Internet of Things, digital marketing and creative multimedia.
To meet the fast–growing demands of these industries, Malaysia would need about 20,000 data professionals to serve the needs adequately and a recent survey showed that starting salaries for data professionals ranged from RM50,000–90,000 per annum depending on academic qualifications and technical competencies.
Computing Skills Preferred by Malaysian Employers when Hiring New Employees According to Hays Report
A new study shows that employers in Malaysia tend to look for technical skills in job candidates such as project management and data analysis, as opposed to “soft skills” like teamwork and problem-solving.
This year’s Hays Asia Salary Guide, which highlights salary and recruitment trends based on survey responses from China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore, found that 65% of employers who participated in the study said hard skills are more desirable than soft skills in prospective employees.
Overall, three in five or 60% of employers are more inclined to hire candidates with hard skills over those with soft skills. The most sought after of these are statistical analysis and data mining (55%), project management (52%) and computer skills (44%).
In terms of soft skills, employees with problem-solving skills (87%), good teamwork (80%) and verbal communication (78%) are the most desirable.
The proliferation in the use of updated technologies in organisations in Malaysia has resulted in new opportunities for professionals from a wide spectrum of specialisms, not necessarily having an IT-focused role, to drive their businesses forward. For instance, as financial institutions and fintech companies build their capabilities in digital banking, legal, risk and compliance teams are needed to ensure the proper implementations of online systems and processes. Such employers are on the lookout for talents who have solid skills in their core profession while being up to date with digital banking laws and standards requirements to ensure compliant operations and allow businesses to scale up.
The boom in SME and e-commerce platforms
Malaysia’s SME and E-commerce platform scene is expected to rise thanks to government policies supporting the National Industry 4.0 Policy Framework, including the creation of the Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ). Furthermore, Malaysia boasts 15.3 million online shoppers and this trend continues to grow with more Malaysians moving towards online shopping via their mobile devices. In line with this, many companies are actively upskilling their current employees or recruiting new talents with digital or e-commerce knowledge and working experience to capitalise on this opportunity.