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foundit, formerly known as Monster APAC & ME, a prominent talent platform, has released its foundit Insights Tracker (fit) report for August 2023, providing in-depth insights into hiring trends across Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines. This detailed analysis illuminates the changing employment landscapes in these dynamic Asian economies.

The tracker uncovers intriguing trends in the job markets of Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines. Malaysia has displayed consistent job demand over the last three months, indicating a stable market.

Job opportunities in Malaysia have seen positive growth, with a 1% month-over-month (MoM) increase and a robust 7% year-over-year (YoY) growth across various sectors. In contrast, Singapore has faced challenges, witnessing a -1% MoM and a significant -14% YoY decline in hiring demand.

This aligns with a moderated economic growth curve, signaling vulnerability in the job market and a slower pace of hiring. The Tracker data also indicates a 4% decrease in job demand over the past three months.

Similarly, the Philippines has experienced volatility in its job market, with a 5% decrease in job demand over the same period and negative 9% YoY trends. Despite this decline, a 3% MoM uptick suggests a recovering job market, hinting at potential future recovery.

Commenting on these findings, Sekhar Garisa, CEO of foundit, said that Malaysia currently offers a favorable hiring environment, but there is a growing demand for new skills across sectors. Singapore presents an opportunity for job seekers to enhance their skills proactively due to its moderated economic outlook.

Meanwhile, the Philippines illustrates a recovering job market, emphasizing the continuous need for learning and growth in alignment with changing hiring trends.

Malaysia demonstrated resilience with consistent job demand and notable growth in various sectors. The hospitality sector in Malaysia experienced an exceptional YoY growth of 88%, attributed to government initiatives and investments. In contrast, Singapore and the Philippines reported more modest figures of 8% and 0%, respectively.

The retail sector witnessed significant growth in Malaysia (63%) and the Philippines (45%), with the latter also experiencing a robust double-digit month-on-month increase. Luxury e-commerce and retail outlet expansion contributed to this surge. In Singapore, the retail sector reported a -2% decline for August 2023, but an optimistic outlook prevails for the upcoming quarter.

The logistics sector saw increased demand in Malaysia (25%) due to significant e-commerce growth, while Singapore (-4%) and the Philippines (-35%) faced challenges in this sector.

In the technology domain, notable declines were observed in IT, Telecom/ISP, and BPO/ITES in all three regions due to the unpredictable global landscape. Malaysia, however, exhibited a 3% YoY growth in Software, Hardware, and Telecom roles, reflecting ongoing digitization efforts and the demand for technology experts. Sales & Business Development roles recorded an impressive 34% YoY growth in Malaysia, indicating proactive business strategies.

Conversely, Malaysia’s Customer Service sector faced challenges with a substantial -44% YoY decline, while the Philippines experienced a 6% YoY growth, aligning with its position as a hub for customer service outsourcing. Singapore and the Philippines shared -18% and -23% YoY contractions in Marketing & Communications roles, reflecting adjustments in marketing strategies.

Regarding hospitality and travel roles, Malaysia saw a remarkable surge of 133% YoY growth, whereas Singapore and the Philippines reported more conservative figures of 8% and 0% YoY growth for the same roles, respectively. Purchase/Logistics/Supply Chain professionals faced diverse challenges, with Malaysia showing a slight 2% YoY increase, while Singapore (-9%) and the Philippines (-24%) reported declines.


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