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This year promises to be another year of growth for the marketing and digital sector in Malaysia, as the country continues to attract increasing amounts of direct foreign investment. The 2018 HAYS salary guide, which surveyed 3,000 organisations across over 15 industries employing more than six million people in Asia Pacific, described this year’s outlook for the online, media and digital industry as “hot”.

The new flow of jobs for marketing and digital candidates are a result of the new manufacturing plants in Penang, Johor Bahru and Selangor in particular, and is set to continue throughout the year.

The start-up and e-commerce boom will continue at “full strength”, with more new technology companies opening their doors in Malaysia.

The market is also tipped to grow further over the next financial year, which will result in a stronger demand for skilled digital marketers. HAYS predicts this trend to last through to 2019.

With the government’s ongoing initiatives to push the country towards a digital economy, Malaysia is equipped to nurture a digital workforce to catch up with the technological advances in other Asia Pacific countries. As there have been rapid development across artificial intelligence (AI), analytics, blockchain and virtual reality (VR), the report said candidates can expect plenty of developer roles in Malaysia this year. The roles will focus on AI, VR and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Web and mobile developers, as well as UI/UX designers will also remain in demand. Additionally, many Malaysian companies are expected to recruit talent who possess technical analytical skills and customer analysis skills across industries including e-commerce, finance and manufacturing. The report also predicts Malaysian companies to invest in their infrastructure capabilities within cloud computing and IoT this year, thus creating new job openings.

Despite the positive outlook for Malaysia, the report identified the marketing and digital sector as one of the areas that face difficulty in recruiting in Asia Pacific. According to respondents, 19% of them found it tough to recruit middle management for this sector, followed by senior management (13%) and entry level to middle management candidates (12%).

Malaysian’s “most restless” as employees

The report also described Malaysians to be the “most restless” candidates, with 48% of respondents currently looking for a new job and 35% planning to move within six months.

According to HAYS, any confidence placed in the sustainability of skill sets should be based on “solid research” and a willingness to up skill “long before” they are required to find a new career path. This is because skills and industries can go from “hot to cold” within a few years, the report added.

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Money is king

Money is still king in Asia Pacific, with salary being the main reason majority of respondents (61%) are leaving their employer, remaining unchanged from 2017. Lack of career progression (47%), seeking new challenges (47%) and management style and company culture (35%) are also key drivers for job hunting.

About 40% of respondents cited work life balance as a reason for them to stay with their current employer, followed by salary (39%) and job security (33%). Nonetheless, there is still a risk and an opportunity for employers, the reported noted. Few employers can offer job security nowadays, and as such, there is a need for them to focus on what they can deliver. This includes career pathways, flexible work options and strengthening the capabilities of its managers.

(Photo courtesy: 123rf)