Youth unemployment has always been an issue that is hotly debated in Malaysia. Many job vacancies require applicants to have at least some proven experience under their belt.
Ah yes, the great dilemma as old as time, how are fresh graduates supposed to gain experience if having experience is one of the requirements to secure a job?
As of last year, unemployed graduates make up the majority of the total unemployed which is at 74.8%, an increase compared to the year before by a total of 6.9%. There has been a long-standing debate between employers and fresh graduates and many initiatives were taken by the government to combat this issue - one of the most recent being the “Penjana KPT-CAP” program which aims to equip fresh graduates with the knowledge and skills that are up to international standards, indirectly increasing the employability of Malaysian graduates.
As a long-serving recruitment agency in Malaysia, we understand the challenges that fresh graduates have faced over the years in order to secure employment.
With insights from our clients and successful candidates, BGC Malaysia has some tips for fresh graduate job seekers out there that will help applicants secure jobs in no time.
1. Pick Up IT Skills
According to Jobstreet’s Job Outlook 2019, employers are looking for candidates that are skilled in Information Technology. Over the last couple of years, Malaysia is undergoing a shift toward a digital economy. International investors are looking at Malaysia as a potential market. There are ample opportunities for tech industries to thrive and become one of the pillars that supports the Malaysian economy. Aside from international investments, there are several companies that have solidified their spots as key tech companies such as Shopee, Lazada, Grab, Foodpanda. We have seen their presence lending a positive impact to the digital economy which is now a reason why organizations are shifting their focus to adopting IR 4.0.
If you are interested in becoming an IT professional, read our blog on Top Programming Language For IT Roles In Malaysia!
2. Actively Find Work Experience
Securing an internship is one of the most practical ways for fresh graduates to get hands-on experience in the field that they are aiming to work in. Valuable experience are gained through internships instead of the classroom. Internships provides graduates with a safe space to apply the knowledge that they have learned at school in the real world. Aside from that, internships equip graduates with real knowledge and relevant skills on the job and help graduates to transition from being students into working professionals.
However, most graduates in Malaysia typically graduate with about 3 to 6 months of internship experience. Outside of the requirements set by the university, most students have little incentive to seek more internship opportunities. At BGC Malaysia, we advise students to actively consider relevant short-term job opportunities and internships that could be aligned with their long term career aspirations. Such opportunities abound during semester breaks and long vacations. This way, graduates will be able to set themselves apart from their graduating peers.
3.Work on Developing Your Soft Skills
There’s no doubt that technical skills and proven experience under your belt could easily impress potential employers. However, one of the challenges that fresh graduates face is their lack of experience compared to current working professionals. Entry-level positions are competitive amongst fresh grads and the experienced and employers tend to also consider the soft skills that candidates have.
Skills such as teamwork, communication and attitude are considered a must-have. These skills can help employers determine if an applicant would fit well and adapt to the company culture. Having a positive attitude makes it easier for existing co-workers to work with new hires. This in turn would allow the team dynamic to flow naturally without affecting the team’s productivity.
4. Prepare Well For Your Interview
Job seekers have ample opportunities to impress potential employers throughout the job application process. One of the best opportunities that job seekers could ask for comes in the form of interviews rounds. Here’s when employers gauge the potential and characters of job seekers since it is one of the first stages where candidates and employers are able to get to know each other.
Use your resources. If you are recommended job opportunities with a recruitment agency such as BGC, ask your recruiters questions to get more prepared! We have tips on interviewing here!
5. Use Recruitment Agencies in Malaysia
One of the best ways to increase the chances of employment is to use the services provided by recruitment agencies. Recruitment agencies like BGC Malaysia use multiple platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Monsta, Jobstreet, Google and Indeed to source for candidates. Employers and candidates utilise these platforms because they are proven to help users solve manpower problems such as filing up vacancies or looking for employment.
BGC Group Malaysia also has a platform that caters to the needs of both job seekers and employers. With a wide range of vacancies in our pool, there will definitely be opportunities for jobseekers to jumpstart your careers!
Why Graduates In Malaysia Cannot Find Jobs