Malaysia’s moratorium on loan repayments as well as the ongoing pandemic have significantly impacted the workings of its banking and financial institutions. One area of impact has been hiring, with new headcounts being rigorously controlled at this time. While banks have not stopped hiring, they have been observed to have become faster and more deliberate in their selection processes. Additionally, the current atmosphere of regulatory changes has increased the need for talent-short governance and change management-related roles, while the ongoing boom in digital payments and processes has led demand for more ‘quantitative’ roles that can harness skills like software development and data analytics to support digitalisation and automation.

Hiring continues to steadily pick up

These are some of the findings from The Inside Story of Malaysia, a monthly regional recruitment analysis undertaken by global recruitment expert Hays. Focusing on the Banking & Finance sector, the analysis found that while Malaysia’s initial measures to control the pandemic led to a decrease in hiring, the CMCO has seen banks and financial institutions restart their recruitment processes. No significant drop in hiring has been observed since. However, approvals for new headcount have been more rigorous for both local and global institutions who are now making more definitive decisions much quicker to capitalise on new headcount before they lose the opportunity.

IT & Change Management Skills Highly Sought After

There has been an increased demand for IT and digital skills, with payments and digital banking expected to be huge areas for growth in the coming years. There has been increased demand for IT-related or quantitative functions that include leveraging data analytics and visualisation, and programming languages like R, Python, SARS, and SQL in various departments. Change management is also current a highly sought-after skillset, particularly within senior-level roles. Many companies now expect leadership candidates to have some transformation or change management experience, such as the ability to bring change to company culture, structure or ways of working.

Hybrid roles on the horizon

Banking as a whole will continue to focus on digitalisation and automation. For this reason, candidates with both domain banking knowledge and digital skillsets would be in demand in the coming months. Operational roles will also be streamlined, impacting hiring in this area and bringing in an era of more hybrid roles that will likely become more common as more companies look for ways to cut costs. However, this will depend largely on what technology companies have in place, a space that is still emerging at this time.

Tom Osborne, Managing Director of Hays Malaysia commented, “The six months of moratorium policy issued by the Central Bank severely impacted all banks and insurance companies, particularly local banks that were more focused towards Retail and SME customers. However, most financial institutions are steadily getting back to speed in terms of both hiring and business activity. While many candidates at this time remain cautious about moving in the current climate, we have observed a gap in mid-level roles that could result in the hiring of more fresh talent. Upskilling in digital or data-related areas as well as change management will give candidates a much-needed edge in this competitive market.”

To read the full Inside Story of Banking & Finance in Malaysia, please click here.




About Hays Malaysia

Agensi Pekerjaan Hays (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd ("Hays Malaysia") is one of the leading specialist recruitment companies in Malaysia in recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people across a wide range of industries and professions. We provide mid to senior level recruitment services across both finance and commerce industries. We have become known as the experts in sourcing regional and global candidates, as well as returning Malaysians.

Hays has been in Malaysia since 2012 and boasts a track record of success and growth, with two operating offices located in KLCC and Sunway. We operate across the private and public sector, dealing in permanent positions in the following specialisms: Accountancy & Finance, Banking & Financial Services, Construction, Digital Technology, Engineering, Finance Technology, Human Resources, Information Technology, Insurance, Legal, Life Sciences, Manufacturing & Operations, Marketing & Digital, Procurement, Supply Chain and Sales.

About Hays

Hays plc (the "Group") is a leading global professional recruiting group. The Group is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people worldwide, being the market leader in the UK and Asia Pacific and one of the market leaders in Continental Europe and Latin America. The Group operates across the private and public sectors, dealing in permanent positions, contract roles and temporary assignments. As at 31 December 2019 the Group employed 11,600 staff operating from 266 offices in 33 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2019:

  • the Group reported net fees of £1,129.7 billion and operating profit (pre-exceptional items) of £248.8 million;
  • the Group placed around 81,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 254,000 people into temporary assignments;
  • 18% of Group net fees were generated in Australia & New Zealand, 27% in Germany, 23% in United Kingdom & Ireland and 32% in Rest of World (RoW);
  • the temporary placement business represented 57% of net fees and the permanent placement business represented 43% of net fees;
  • Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Chile, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the UK and the USA