Even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the impact of technology on jobs can’t be understated, with the rise of automation changing the way tasks are carried out, putting jobs in various industries at risk.
PwC Malaysia conducted a survey between April and May 2020 among the Malaysian public to find out how ready Malaysians are in facing the digital world through upskilling. 986 participants responded to the survey.
The key findings indicate that 70% believe technology will change their current jobs in 3 to 5 years while 78% of respondents believe that automation brings more opportunities than risk. 34% are concerned about automation putting jobs at risk.
71% of respondents believe that technological developments will improve their job prospects in the future while 85% would learn new skills or completely retrain to improve their future employability. In terms of accepting the opportunity to better understand or use technology, 93% of respondents said yes but only 38% say that they are given many opportunities by their current employer to improve their digital skills outside their normal duties.
More effort is needed to enable employees to work remotely as only 46% of the respondents are provided with all the necessary tools to be effective when working remotely. Only 41% say that their organisational culture already supports and empowers employees to work remotely should the need arise.
Positively, 77% of respondents are excited or optimistic about the role technology can play in their jobs. Most who feel positive are hopeful that technology would allow them to do more interesting work (35%) and enable them to get more done (27%).
“It is clear that automation will result in reclassification and rebalancing of work. This will not only alter the types of jobs available but their numbers and perceived value. Some sectors and roles, even entire sections of the workforce may lose out but other opportunities will be created”, said Benedict Francis, PwC Malaysia Southern Region Leader.
“Taking into account the impact of COVID-19, we advise both employers and employees to reflect on these findings, and implement strategies to reassess their workforce capabilities and reskill their workers to perform in critical roles”, said Manohar Johnson, PwC Malaysia Southern Region Assurance Partner.