Tomorrow's Professionals: Generation Z in Malaysia

*Available in digital version only
27 Feb 2018
36-page report

We see them everywhere. On the streets, at train stations, in shopping malls, at cafés, on university campuses… youngsters glued to their smartphones or tablets, seemingly oblivious to the real world around them as if the virtual world that captivates them so is more real. Meet Generation Z, the true revolutionaries of the digital revolution. Born shortly after the mid-1990s, they have known life only in a digitally enabled environment. Two billion of them, more than a quarter of the world population, are about to enter the workforce and redefine the workplace of the future.

Much has been written about this generation’s preferences, activities, consumption patterns and social media habits as potential consumers. Little is known though about its professional dreams, expectations and outlook towards a working life. Will these young people take to or falter in a job market getting rapidly reshaped by rising automation and artificial intelligence? Will Malaysian employers be able to adapt to their digital lives? Does the financial services industry, which is at the forefront of digitalisation, appeal to them as a career? What can be done to attract and retain this upcoming talent pool that promises to disrupt entrenched notions of work and the workplace?

These and other questions are answered in this report, which draws upon insights gained from a comprehensive online survey of over 900 Malaysian youths aged 16 to 21 years, as well as a series of in-depth interviews. Corporate strategists, senior managers and human resource practitioners should find it an invaluable resource to understand who is about to knock on their doors, in very large numbers.