Despite recent global economic uncertainty and challenges within the Malaysian economy, the employment sector is ripe with bright growth prospects. The employment market in Malaysia is experiencing a gradual shift, where working professionals are now more focused on their career development rather than concerns with salary increments.
The 2015 Malaysia Employee Intentions Report shows that as Malaysia struggles to address the fierce competition for talent, employee retention remains a significant challenge. Some 44% of professionals expect to leave their current role in the next 12 months and a further 40% state that they only see themselves in the same role for the next one to three years.
The findings were the result of a survey of 869 working professionals and show optimism and ambition among the country’s workforce.
Another key finding is that Malaysian employees are placing more emphasis on career progression, which has superseded having an increased salary as a top-ranking factor. Out of those surveyed, more than half (52%) highlighted scope for career progression was key in considering a change of jobs. A higher salary remains another important factor, as with conventional expectations.
When asked what would attract them to a new job, more professionals stated they would be satisfied with a better job title or more work remits rather than an increased salary. Job seekers are looking for a better position and start-ups in sectors such as e-commerce, are driving demand for qualified individuals seeking a fresh challenge. Looking out for a fresh challenge is another priority for Malaysian professionals when they consider changing roles.
Salary expectations of Malaysian employees are high with 87% expecting an increase above 11% when moving into a new role. Some 72% of these professionals will be asking for a 16% pay rise or more when switching roles.
To accommodate a clear desire for career progression, employers will need to keep pace with employee demand and offer competitive incentives to avoid losing large numbers of staff.
Companies will also need to rethink their employee retention practices, as financial rewards are no longer the most sought after factor in changing jobs. Maintaining a performance culture will remain an ongoing priority. Employee recognition, succession planning, competitive incentives and building a strong internal talent pipeline are instrumental to driving performance in addition to retaining top performers.
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