The gap between the demand for information and computer technology (ICT) talent and the supply of that talent is large.
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.
Therefore, to study ICT or computing after SPM is a good choice but you have to choose the best university to equip you and not choose just any university.
According to a study by national ICT custodian Multimedia Development Corporation, Malaysia’s demand for IT graduates will experience an annual growth rate of 18.6% between 2010 and 2013 against a supply growth of only 2.7%.
Data and projections show that computing technology will account for two-thirds of all job growth in all fields of science and technology in the future.
According to a report on May 25, 2013 in Business Times and on May 22, 2013 in The Star, MDEC stated “Malaysia is expected to continue with its stellar growth momentum in 2013, is targeting total new investments to average between RM1.5bil and RM2bil. The target for the next 3 years is RM3bil.
Last year, the national ICT (information, communications and technology)initiative managed to record RM2.92 billion worth of investments, an increase of 17 per cent over 2011.
In 2012, MSC Malaysia’s revenue stood at RM33.53 billion, an increase of 5.7 per cent from 2011. Exports grew to RM11.6 billion, reflecting a 14 per cent rise from the previous year.
With this results, MSC Malaysia’s contribution to gross domestic product stood at
RM11.3 billion, recording a significant double-digit growth of 18 per cent from 2011.
As for job creation, 9,712 jobs were created last year which represented a 28 per cent growth over 2011, bringing the total number of jobs created since its inception to 128,850.”
The increase in investments meant that more jobs were created for IT professionals.
Multimedia Development Corp (MDeC) is the government implementation agency set up as a company to drive the MSC Malaysia vision of an innovation-led, knowledge-rich, progressive society and nation.
Jobstreet Job Outlook Report 2012
According to leading online recruitment portal Jobstreet, computer-related jobs – whether hardware- or software-based – have been consistently in the list of top five jobs in demand from 2009 to 2012.
In its March 2012 quarterly job outlook index, those with skills in marketing and business development or sales marketing are the most sought after employees. This is followed by those people with customer service expertise and computer and information technology (software) sectors .
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World Bank Report 2009 reports lack of skilled IT professionals
In its 2009 Economic Monitor report on Malaysia, the World Bank noted that “the lack
of knowledgeable IT staff and consultants to design IT-based solution systems has discouraged firms from adopting and/or expanding the use of IT, which could greatly enhance productivity.”
By 2010, the problem had become critical enough for the National ICT Human Resource Task Force to draft its ICT Human Capital Development Framework, which argued that unless Malaysia boosted the quality and quantity of its IT workforce, it would not be able to meet the Economic Transformation Program’s aspiration of becoming a high-income economy.
Ministry of Higher Education in 2011 reports that IT graduates are jobless
Although it seems that the job outlook for IT graduates are pretty good however based
on the results of the Graduates Tracer Study for 2011 released by the Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE), ICT graduates were no more employable nor unemployable than their peers from other fields. Out of every four ICT graduates, one remained unemployed after graduation while two others were fully employed within a three-four month period.
Why the difference in the reports?
There are indeed plenty of jobs out there for ICT and computer science graduates as reported. From talking to ICT industry experts, the problem is not the lack of jobs, it is the lack of skilled and well trained ICT graduates. Students are joining universities with poorly planned ICT curriculum, inexperienced lecturers, and lack of exposure to expanding critical thinking and problem solving skills. Although theses courses may have been accredited by MQA and the fees cheap, graduates in the end lose out because they cannot find a job.
According to Dr. Shawn Tan in his article in Digital News Asia on March 13, 2013,
stated “While it is not difficult to hire people, it is increasingly difficult to hire good people, something that is corroborated with the situation on the ground. What the entire industry sorely needs is brains, but what we get are mostly bodies. For some reason, our universities are not graduating the right kind of people. Therefore, the real problem is that we have one too many bad Computer Science programs in our country.”
According to PIKOM’s Job Outlook Market Report 2012, “So what are the major deficiencies found among our fresh graduates today? An immediate observation that comes to mind is in the demonstration of their soft skills, which include writing and speaking capabilities. A lack of confidence and independence are other major challenges fresh graduates often face as they attempt to assimilate into the workforce.
Another shortfall of our fresh graduates is their lack of appreciation and expectation of working in a real life environment. Often some fresh graduates would experience culture shock when they commence work. Analytical and creativity traits are also areas that are visibly lacking in fresh graduates, and this problem seems to be endemic among both local and overseas graduates. Possession of these qualities often sets apart exceptional candidates from the mediocre ones.”
What should you do?
Students must be more careful in choosing the right university for the ICT or
computing studies. They should choose a university that has a proven track record such as Asia Pacific University (APU) where their students have won the Microsoft Imagine Cup for the past 3 years. APU is also ranked as Excellent or Tier 5 by MQA in the SETARA 2011. More than 10,000 students have chosen to study at APU and about 80% of them are taking ICT programmes.
Exposure to the industry in creases a student’s critical thinking and problem solving skills. UCSI University has over 1000 companies where their students can choose to perform their Co-Op programme. Students at UCSI have to undergo this Co-Op or internship for 2 months of each year of their studies which is the longest of any university.
In the 2013 League Table Ranking for Computer Science by the Complete University
Guide, Northumbria University is ranked at 51 while the Guardian University guide 2013: University league table for Computer Sciences & IT ranks Northumbria University at 59. Independent rankings indicate the reputation and reliability of a university’s commitment to education.
Students should not choose a university based on the fact that it is cheap because you may not gain the necessary knowledge and skills therefore not able to get a job which will affect you for the rest of your life. University education is an investment for a student’s future and should be taken more seriously because the decision that you make now, can change your life forever.
If you are not sure whether IT or computing is the right choice for you, please contact us for a free assessment and counseling. We will help guide you to the right course.
EduSpiral Consultant Services – Your Online Education Advisor
EduSpiral Consultant Services is a university placement centre that guides students
from across Malaysia to help them choose the right course and university. Highly experienced professional staff will talk to you and get to know you before giving advise on which course that will best fit you and your budget.
Established in 2009, EduSpiral is an appointed representative for top reputable private colleges & universities in Malaysia & Ireland. EduSpiral also represents the top ranked Northumbria University, UK and Hong Kong Polytechnic University.
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