Data Science

Job Outlook, Demand and Salary for Data Scientists and Data Analysts in Malaysia

Find out What is the Job Outlook and Salary for Data Science and Data Analytics in Malaysia so that you can Make the Right Choice for your Course

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Digital information has grown exponentially, and the rise in the Internet of Things (IoT) technology is likely to accelerate this. However, with so much data without insight, it is of no value, which explains why we are seeing a sharp rise in demand for Data Scientist, Data Analyst, Data Artists and Data Visualiser vacancies, all over the world. These professionals collect, filter, analyse and make sense of a business’s data, helping to turn the vast amounts of data into actionable insights, whether that’s changes in customer behaviour or new opportunities. These opportunities would not have come about without data science.

There is a tremendous demand for Data Scientists and Big Data Specialists worldwide now and in the future, with hundreds of thousands of new job opportunities emerging globally. In Malaysia alone, by the year 2020 this need is expected to reach at least 20,000 data professionals and 2000 data scientists. Job demand as well as salary for qualified Data Scientists or Big Data Professionals in Malaysia is high Moreover, employers will be looking for creativity, collaboration, human interpretation and communication skills, in candidates. The jobseekers to stand out from their peers will be those who are not only able to provide solutions to challenges but communicate how and why to implement them.

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What is the Job Demand for Data Scientists in Malaysia?

Malaysia’s national ICT agency Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) has unveiled a plan, supported by seven public and private institutes of higher learning (IHLs), to increase the number of local data scientists from the current 80 to 2000 by the year 2020.

Statistics show that by the year 2020, there will be about two million job openings for data professionals and that the demand for people with this knowledge and skill will outstrip supply by a ratio of two to one. It’s a global phenomena which is already in motion and Malaysia has set its sights on developing 20,000 data professionals and 2,000 data scientists by 2020.

There is a tremendous requirement for Data Scientists and Big Data Specialists worldwide now and in the future, with hundreds of thousands of new job opportunities emerging globally. In Malaysia alone, by the year 2020 this need is expected to reach at least 20,000 data professionals and 2000 data scientists. Job demand as well as salary for qualified Data Scientists or Big Data Professionals in Malaysia is high.

Furthermore, according to the 2019 Emerging Jobs in Malaysia Report by LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network, Data Scientists is listed as one of the Top 5.  The findings underscore the demand for jobs which require hybrid skills, primarily to help organisations in Malaysia navigate their digital transformation journey. LinkedIn analysed millions of unique, user-input job titles from the last five years, and found that while the top five emerging jobs are all related to technology, many of them require management and communications skills. Their actual roles are varied and diverse, reflecting a labour market that values talent with a hybrid set of complementary skills.

Job Demand for Data Science and Data Analytics in South East Asia

According to a report by the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation, leaders in both the private sector and public sector feel that data science and analytics will change the face of business and government, but skills shortages continue to delay its adoption and utilization.

The report found that data science and analytics skills are in high demand, but supply is critically low with employers facing severe shortages.

Its projections suggest that between now and 2022, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines will need 20,000, 15,000, and 340,880 data scientists respectively – and the lack of talent will make a severe dent in the way businesses leverage data to transform their digital DNA.

What are the most in demand job Skills in Malaysia?

A report from the recent Digital Workforce of The Future by LinkedIn, which revealed that a combination of skills encompassing Big Data, data analytics and web development registered a 21% growth in demand. In Malaysia, the top five in-demand digital skills are big data, software and user testing, mobile development, Cloud computing and software engineering management.

What is the Salary for Data Scientists in Malaysia?

Asean Data Analytics Exchange (ADAX) CEO Sharala Axryd believes data professionals such as data engineers, data analysts and data scientists are the “sexiest jobs” of the 21st century. She said that Data science fresh graduates can demand starting pay in the range of RM4,000-RM8,000 — making it the highest paid entry level job in the country today. In addition, an experienced professional in the field can demand up to RM15,000 a month.

Many employers are building their teams from ‘scratch’, accepting candidates with entry-level industry experience. The large salary range reported by employers for a data scientist from more than RM 15,000 per month to less than RM 5,000 per month may reflect a lack of precision in defining the role of a data scientist. While compensation will differ by candidate experience and performance, it is important that this role is not undervalued. Data science competencies such as statistical modelling and machine learning require a high education investment which should be recognised.

What are the Requirements for Data Scientists and Data Analysts in Malaysia?

Requirements for data science and analytics jobs are often multidisciplinary and they all require an ability to link analytics to creating value for the organization. The analytics and technology skills vary widely, but candidates must also demonstrate skills related to problem-solving in the workplace, including soft skills such as communication, creativity and teamwork. This holistic skill set is rare, so you should expect to compete fiercely for T-shaped individuals, as they are now often called, meaning those with a principle competency, plus well-honed broad skills to help them cross functions or domains.

Grab Example of How Data Science is Important

Grab’s Wenceslao David, for example, joined the company as a data engineer in May 2015, after working as a database administrator for a couple of years.

Wenceslao quickly moved up the ranks to become a data scientist in October 2016, and in May last year became a Data Science Lead in the company in Singapore.

Along with a team of nearly 50 other data scientists from about 10 countries, Wenceslao is helping Grab develop machine learning algorithms and intelligent systems that can predict traffic, understand customer’s and driver’s preferences, and even contribute to Government initiatives aimed at managing and reducing traffic during peak hours.

Lye Kong-Wei, Grab’s Head of Data Science, highlighted to Tech Wire Asia, how critical data science is to the future of the company.

“We’re evolving to become a superapp, and to get there, we need to be able to predict all sorts of things and simulate all sorts of situations. Data science plays a critical role in that mission,” exclaimed Lye.

There’s no denying the fact that data scientists can truly catapult companies into the future. However, there’s not enough talent in the world to support every ambitious company in the market.

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