The digital transformation that has taken over the world is changing the way we view and conduct business. New ideas and technologies are now in high demand. Acquiring such talent and tech will not only help companies to increase their efficiency and productivity, some speculate that these are now essential to even survive in the increasingly competitive markets.

According to Linkedin, the world’s largest professional network, the SMEs of Malaysia are quickly adapting to the changes in the business environment; adopting digital technologies and hiring professionals with technology-related skills wherever they can find them.

LinkedIn has found that technology-related skills have the highest year-on-year growth among SMEs, indicating ongoing initiatives to improve their products, services, and operations. The fastest growing skills of SMEs in Malaysia are:

  • Cloud Computing
  • User Experience Design Tool
  • Data Visualisation
  • Back-end Web Development
  • Social Media
  • NoSQL
  • Data Science
  • TypeScript
  • React Nativs
  • Blockchain
  • Firebase
  • Docker Products

It also goes without saying that the young talent of the next generation of workers are also in high demand; as they are the ones most likely to have learned such skills during their education and training. As such, SMEs have been concentrating on acquiring said talent to help them achieve their goals.

There are quite a number of challenges related to hiring these new talents. It is imperative that SMEs spend time to understand skills gaps and develop a talent strategy. SMEs are looking to hire new employees with specific skills and qualities that would help create or maintain an efficient, professional and productive workplace.

However, they often struggle with lean teams and budgets. This makes it challenging to recruit young and digitally-savvy professionals who have access to diverse information and career options. As SMEs look to attract the right talents, they can benefit from a more thoughtful approach to hiring.

“While today’s young professionals have a variety of options when looking for a job, we have found that they are drawn to opportunities that align with their purpose and enable them to develop themselves. Small and medium business owners interested in attracting them to be part of their teams can benefit from being open about their own aspirations, cultivating authentic connections, and sharing growth opportunities available to employees,” said Olivier Legrand, Managing Director, Asia-Pacific, LinkedIn.

For SMEs who are looking to build relationships with talent needed for their growth, LinkedIn shares the following tips:

  1. Consider both the hard and soft skills needed for your business.

While the fastest rising skills reflect the efforts of SMEs to take advantage of platforms available today, new innovations may emerge in the near future. This signals to SMEs to also look at soft skills like creativity and critical thinking in the hiring process. These enable talent to respond to potential disruption or seize emerging possibilities for their business.

  1. Showcase and celebrate your company’s culture and purpose.

Based on their own data collected, LinkedIn has found that SME employees in Malaysia tend to indicate great interest in professional content, often paying more attention to profiles that those working in large companies. SME employers can take advantage of this by publishing job openings, posts, photos, videos, and articles about what it is like to work in their company.

  1. Offer learning and development opportunities.

SME employees in Malaysia are highly interested in learning and developing themselves. SME employers can make things easier for them by incorporating learning and development programs for their workers. These can take the form of quick online courses that can be taken individually or as a group.

“Finding the right talent is one of the most important decisions SMEs can make in their journeys. While being more deliberate about hiring can take more time and effort, it can save them a lot of issues down the line, and open up more opportunities for business growth,” said Legrand.


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