Covering Disruptive Technology Powering Business in The Digital Age

The Role of Technology in Transforming Jobs and Supercharging Careers

Written By:  Chook Yuh Yng, Chief Growth Officer, SEEK Asia


In an era marked by swift technological progress that are often seen as the disruptors to jobs, it is time to shift our perspective. As the job landscape undergoes transformation, many individuals find themselves standing at a crossroads in the evolving workforce. Instead of fearing obsolescence, people are embracing the new era of technology-enabled learning and reskilling.

In Malaysia, 96% of employers are either currently using or planning to use generative AI (Artificial Intelligence) in 2024. This means that employees will now need to further build their skills to keep up with evolving job descriptions. Fortunately, a wide array of online courses, skilling content, AI-guided career counselling, and virtual reality simulations are readily available to assist employees in advancing or pivoting their career path.

Welcome to the era where technology is spearheading a reskilling and upskilling revolution that transforms careers. To access this, you do not have to go to a university and attend classes in person; today, there are a variety of options, from online courses to complimentary upskilling apps available to anyone seeking it.

Unlocking the Potential of Upskilling and Reskilling in Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia is one of fastest growing economies in the world and is home to the third-largest labour force that is predominantly young. In Malaysia, the labour force makes up 16.97 million persons, indicating that there is an enormous potential for skilled labour. Yet, job participation, skill development and productivity levels are still lagging behind.

Over the past decade, labour force participation in some Southeast Asian countries has gradually increased, while others have seen their rates fall significantly. What’s more, high rates of informal employment and a lack of support for older workers has slowed the region’s shift to a knowledge-based economy.

Research by PwC indicates that upskilling and reskilling, with a focus on digital-first capabilities, can potentially boost Southeast Asia’s GDP by 4% by 2030, creating nearly 680,000 new jobs. Importantly, it helps to create an agile and resilient workforce in the face of economic uncertainty and geopolitical strife.

Technology as a Learning Tool

In light of these circumstances, we urgently need to rethink our approach to upskilling. Lifelong learning programs, utilising technology to deliver online content, offer greater benefits to adults and older professionals seeking fresh challenges beyond the limited courses offered by traditional education institutions. In markets like Malaysia, digital skills are the top focus for employees, with most still prioritising basic digital skills (83.1%).

Technology empowers learners, giving them control and personalisation. This allows them to set their own pace since lectures and materials are pre-recorded, or they can participate in virtual lessons via online platforms such as Jobstreet’s Career Hub powered by seekMax, eliminating the need for in-person attendance. Through online platform learning such as this, the learner will be able to focus on gaining the skills they want to prioritise to be more suited for their next job.

In comparison to full-time universities that emphasise rigorous academics, upskilling and lifelong learning institutions provide easily digestible, bite-sized content for rapid knowledge acquisition. Furthermore, these modern educational models are designed to accommodate busy schedules and shorter attention spans, placing a strong emphasis on accessibility and convenience.

What’s particularly significant is that these accessible platforms empower learners to develop both hard and soft skills. For instance, individuals in today’s workforce can equip themselves with essential skills such as salary negotiation and leadership.

Enhancing the Upskilling Experience

Once considered staid, lifelong learning platforms are continuously innovating to improve the social aspects of their programs. To do this, many programs promote learning through collaboration and communication. Talent embarking on a lifelong learning journey can engage in group learning activities to interact with course material, forums, quizzes, masterclasses, or online discussions.

“Technology empowers learners, giving them control and personalisation. This allows them to set their own pace since lectures and materials are pre-recorded, or they can participate in virtual lessons via online platforms.”

With the rise of online communities, it is easier than ever for a working professional to gain relevant and practical insights from like-minded peers or industry experts who can help them navigate their careers by providing tailored advice.

This is exactly the sort of positive learning environment we are creating with Jobstreet’s Career Hub powered by seekMAX, SEEK’s free innovative in-app learning and community platform that’s designed for on-the-go learners—with access to a wealth of content as well as industry experts. Since launch, nearly 1 in 3 monthly active users of the Jobstreet platform have already started using seekMAX as a tool to learn new skills and share insights amongst the community.

As the world’s workforce continues to evolve, lifelong learning platforms are crucial to personal growth and professional success. Lean into the opportunities they offer to stay relevant and competitive. Public and private sector must also encourage this mindset in order to build a futureproof workforce.