1 in 5 workers looking to switch careers

Many in Malaysia are rethinking their career choices amidst the recession

1 in 5 workers looking to switch careers

Almost all (91%) Malaysian employees are intending to upskill or reskill within the next 12 months, found a new pulse survey.

Their motivation lies in different areas:

  • Half (55%) want to be prepared for the accelerated automation and digitalisation of work
  • 21% are keen on switching careers or work in a different industry
  • 13% are doing it out of a fear of retrenchment

READ MORE: Malaysia leads Asia in this key HR issue

The career-switchers especially are aware of their circumstances and have adjusted their salary expectations accordingly.

Close to half said they’re willing to take on lower paying roles — as long as they meet their set goal for switching industries, found Randstad Malaysia.

“The pandemic has resulted in many rethinking their career choices, particularly for mid-career employees,” Jaya Dass, managing director, Malaysian and Singapore at Randstad told HRD.

“Many are looking to transition into an industry that is perceived to be recession-proof, such as technology, research & development, essential goods manufacturers and e-commerce.”

Fresh graduates or mid-career switchers looking to enter a new industry unrelated to their accumulated experience and skills understand that they “might not have what it takes” to meet job expectations in a new environment, Dass explained.

This is why most are willing to accept a lower salary within their threshold — as long as they have the chance to gain the necessary experience to build their new career.

READ MORE: Malaysia to review CEO-employee pay gap

She believes that those who can successfully demonstrate a positive learning attitude and who are open to embracing change are more likely to build stable, fulfilling careers and become “attractive employees in the long run”.

With the pandemic, many have greater expectations of their employers to help guide their career development, specifically on the type of skills they should acquire and how to build their digital capabilities in the ‘new normal’,” she said.

“Re-skilling and upskilling programmes benefit candidates who have recently entered a new industry as it allows them to learn the ropes of their new jobs.

“Companies should thus strive to close the widening expectation gap, and invest in career development programmes to elevate the quality and readiness of their workforce to meet future needs and address potential challenges.”

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