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Malaysia’s top 10 talent trends for 2015: Malaysians come home - your next career move is waiting


Increasing demand for IT professionals, the localisation of the workforce and the return of Malaysians from jobs overseas are among the issues that will shape Malaysia’s recruitment landscape in 2015, according to recruiting experts Hays.  


“With the Malaysian economy growing strongly, vacancy activity is set to increase in 2015. There will be a focus on the accountancy & finance, IT, oil & gas, sales & marketing, supply chain and HR sectors,” said Tom Osborne, Country Manager of Hays in Malaysia.


“The trend for employers to focus on securing local talent, particularly those with experience working abroad or within a multinational corporation is set to continue.


“Digital marketing will also be a big area of jobs growth. As the technology and marketing worlds integrate, mobile optimisation will continue to be a significant priority for businesses. Mobile strategies will move beyond simply having a responsive site or mobile app, and focus on mobile-optimised content and social media marketing as well, which will fuel jobs growth for suitably qualified and experienced candidates.”


Hays’ top 10 talent trends for 2015:


1) Localisation of the workforce: Employers in Malaysia are continuing to focus on the ‘Malaysianisation’ of the workforce and this has caused salary demands to increase in areas where there are skills shortages. This is particularly evident in the geoscience area within the Oil & Gas sector where companies, mainly operators, are now vying for talented local professionals with both technical and staff development expertise.


2) Malaysian returners:  Returning Malaysians are being met with open arms by employers who want to fill jobs with experienced locals. Malaysians who have lived, worked or studied overseas are favoured by employers, especially global companies that are choosing Malaysia as their regional or global hub.


3) Boost to IT jobs: Malaysia‘s IT market is expected to continue to develop strongly in 2015 thanks to the country’s healthy economic environment and supportive government policies. Many financial services firms are setting up development, data and shared services centres. However, despite the demand for IT specialists, locals often still lack the niche skills required.


4) The continued rise of shared services centres: The continued growth of shared service centres in Malaysia will continue to create jobs for local professionals, particularly those in senior finance. The shared service industry will turn to the commercial arena to obtain the core finance skills required to move up the business value chain and develop their technical financial processes and analytics functions.


5) Implementation of GST: The implementation of the Goods & Services Tax will begin on April 1, 2015. Sales and finance candidates with additional knowledge of the GST will be needed to facilitate sales, pricing and payment processes. Employers will look for tax and audit candidates with a mix of experience in both commercial and practice firms.


6) The need for strong communication skills: Employers in Malaysia will look for candidates with excellent communication and leadership skills. This is particularly the case for shared service centres, where team leaders and managers work closely with local businesses in the region. Currently, most shared service centres in Malaysia support the Asia Pacific region. However, employers plan to migrate other countries to their SSCs, which will result in the creation of new permanent jobs.


7) Mobile optimisation: There will continue to be a significant increase in demand for digital marketing professionals across the board. As the industry matures it is separating out more into specific skills areas such as content, SEO/SEM, analytics and social media and therefore experts in these areas rather than generalists will be valued. A particular area of jobs growth will be in mobile optimisation as businesses optimise their mobile site for SEO so they rank well on Google’s ‘mobile-friendly’ criteria. We’ll also see companies incorporate mobile into all areas of their digital marketing, which will create high demand for Mobile Developers with iOS and Android skills.


8) Big data in the workplace: Experts agree that big data, alongside the right data mining technology, can provide unprecedented new insights and predictive patterns into employees (not just customers), leading to improved recruitment and retention strategies. In 2015 we will see HR experts interpret data relating to talent attraction, engagement, retention, performance and satisfaction, and use it to make strategic talent acquisition decisions.


9) Emphasis on data and business security: Malaysia began the implementation of the Personal Data Protection Act in 2014 and this has affected companies that store large amounts of personal data. This will fuel jobs growth for audit, legal and compliance professionals in 2015 as firms re-assess their data collection policies. There will also be an increasing need for internal risk and fraud management due to the growing number of e-commerce start-ups locally.


10) Growth of mobile Employee Value Proposition (EVP): Job seekers and employers alike will increase their use of mobile recruiting in 2015. According to a recent website poll 55 per cent of respondents in Malaysia said they do their job searching mostly by desktop but sometimes by mobile, while 42 per cent said they search mainly by mobile and sometimes by desktop. As a result, we’ll continue to see employers invest in their EVP by optimising their careers site and developing their mobile plan.  



Hays, the world’s leading recruiting experts in qualified, professional and skilled people.



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