November 2020

Successfully helped our client, a leading regional engineering group to close the position of CFO


November 2020

Successfully placed the role of Group Head, IT, Singapore for a logistics real estate platform with coverage in Asia Pacific

November 2020

Closed the position of QA Manager, Singapore for a regional airlines’ retail division

Chongqing, 22 Nov 2020

The Chongqing Talent Conference was held successfully in Chongqing Yue Lai Convention Center on 21 and 22 Nov.

Chongqing Party Secretary Chen Min’er and Chongqing Municipal Party Committee Deputy Secretary and Mayor Tang Liangzhi graced the opening ceremony.

The two-day conference consists of talent recruitment roadshows, competitions and project co-operation signing particularly in the fields of big data, artificial intelligence, biomedicine, integrated circuits, organized by the various Chongqing district governments.

More than 1,800 talents in areas critical to the development and growth of Chongqing have been attracted to work in Chongqing, including the Chengdu-Chongqing Economic Circle.  In addition, more than 250 entrepreneurial projects and agreements were being signed.

Over 56 million people watched the exhibition through the cloud, and 77 million people watched the conference through a live stream.

WiseNet Asia’s GM (China), Karen Woong attended the event as a special guest.  According to Ms Woong, “Having worked closely with companies under the ‘Singapore-China Chongqing Connectivity Initiative’ and The Belt and Road Initiative, we have built up a huge pool of talent base which will facilitate the projected growth in Western China over the next decade.  WiseNet Asia is committed to talent connectivity between Western China and Singapore, not just in the area of talent attraction (recruitment) but also in other areas such as talent development and internships for young talents.”



WiseNetAsia Knowledge Center
Copyright © 2020 WiseNet Asia Pte Ltd.  All Rights Reserved


Globally, a new workplace trend is emerging — one that is digitally-driven, more empathetic in improving society, and more agile in customer needs. And the primary catalyst for this overnight shift? A pandemic.

In Malaysia, the nationwide Movement Control Order (MCO) to control the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a significant economic contraction. This is primarily due to the sharp decrease in demand for manufacturing and commodities.

As in many other ASEAN countries, the tourism sector, which contributes largely to the national GDP, has also been hit hard by the pandemic. The international border closure and stringent interstate travel ban mean that people are no longer travelling for non-essential reasons for the time being.

The Department of Statistic Malaysia reports that approximately 745,100 people were unemployed in July 2020

The Department of Statistic Malaysia reports that approximately 745,100 people were unemployed in July 2020. To weather the impact of this adversity, the Malaysian government has introduced several measures in April 2020 in regards to tax relief, wage subsidies and other economic stimulus packages.

It is, however, without a doubt that these government measures are a short-term one; hence, employees must adapt to the new post-COVID-19 hiring trend and demand if they want to remain competitive in the Malaysian job market.

This post explores the top industries that are likely to hire more in Malaysia, benefits of hiring post-COVID-19, top factors that will affect recruitment, the relevant skills needed, and the future of the workplace in Malaysia.

Which top industries will be hiring post-COVID-19?

While it is true that some industries are badly affected, there are top three industries that are experiencing a boom amid the pandemic.

They are:

  • Food retail

As more people become housebound, food retail is increasingly regarded as an essential frontline service. McKinsey reports that not only are consumers simply increasing their online spending on food and grocery, they are also looking for value-for-money products and puts food safety and locally-sourced food as their top priorities.

Therefore, food businesses are providing abundant employment opportunities to people who are currently out of work. The growing demand for delivery also requires them to pivot to digital means more than ever now. Whether finding more drivers or riders to deliver the products or more strategists to reshape their business in a new normal, food retail is the emerging winner to support the livelihoods for millions of people.

  • Health and Wellness

As COVID-19 is the most significant global healthcare crisis in a century, it is only logical to see people getting more health-conscious, thus fueling the wellness economy and health industry, in general.

From healthcare analyst to data scientist, the boom in this industry is evident through many openings in career websites. Beyond the simple precautions of wearing a mask and rigorous hand washing, consumers are now looking into the pursuit of physical, emotional, social, environmental, and spiritual well-being. The proliferation of on-demand healthy food delivery, online health consultation platforms and wellness apps prior to the pandemic will only get bigger now.

  • Information Technology

Being digitally-savvy is a prerequisite for businesses to survive in the pandemic. From machine learning adoption, website creation, to secure online payment, businesses will be restructuring their ecosystem with a focus on technology.

Hence, jobs such as software developers, robotic engineers and digital marketers are in high demand as businesses strive to comply with stringent social distancing measure, while ensuring a seamless and highly-personalised customer experience

What benefits companies get from hiring new staff post-COVID-19?

  • Top talents are in demand

While it is true that many companies resort to layoffs in an economic recession, there are visionary companies and long-term thinkers who go in a completely different direction and start hiring top candidates to fulfil mission-critical aspects of their businesses. Even if you are not being laid off, the time is prime for you to keep an eye out for career opportunities should you be looking to switch industries.

  • Deal with immense growth in demand for labour-intensive activities

As aforementioned, the digitalisation of many businesses and the containment measure of COVID-19 has led to the growth in demand for labour-intensive activities such as product delivery and food retail.

Even if automation and technological substitution take centre stage in this pandemic, they take time to mature. Businesses will still have to hire new staff to meet current customer demands.

What are the top factors that will affect hiring post-COVID-19?

  • Transformed hiring process

With the limited physical interaction, companies will have to adopt a virtual interview process which largely involves video interviews. As a result, HR professionals are finding it harder to decide as candidates could not display the appropriate body language online that plays an important role in hiring.

Due to widespread retrenchments, candidates might also face longer interview processes and need to compete for roles, as many companies still refrain from hiring.

  • New skills needed

The shifting consumer behaviour that we are seeing when the pandemic hit is set to be a permanent change; hence, businesses need to be more agile in catering to consumer needs. Upskilling and reskilling are needed for candidates to remain relevant in the post-COVID-19 job market.

What type of skills will be relevant post-COVID-19?

  •  Soft skills: Communication and Empathy

The work-from-home (WFH) phenomenon, also widely known as remote working, requires office professionals to develop stronger communication strategies and skill. Developing the right digital body language is crucial to get the right message across a specific virtual platform for effective leadership.

The best leaders in major organisations around the world also prioritise empathy and humanity when running a business. In a post-pandemic world, we are expected to learn from the pandemic and pay more attention to the environment as well as local communities in need of societal and economic support.

  • Customer Service

Following the significant spike in e-commerce sales, e-commerce is likely to outlast the pandemic. With it comes the expectation of stellar customer service, as the failure to ensure that will result in customer attrition.

Therefore, job seekers not only need to have the basic skills of communication and problem-solving, but they also need to realise the importance of a seamless customer experience. A multichannel approach where customers can conveniently switch devices and/or channels as they require or like will give customers the ultimate flexibility to engage with businesses.

  • Data Science and Computer Science

The boom in data-driven technologies can be seen simply from the couch in our living room: Netflix, which enjoyed immense popularity at the height of the pandemic.

Without doubt, data science and computer science are playing a key role in many businesses today. The COVID-19 research in many countries is also accelerated by big data to track viruses on a global basis and develop treatment procedures.

Moving beyond traditional means of reports and number crunching, data science and computer science help businesses develop platforms to assess risk, realign strategies, and make stronger decisions based on it.

  • Digital Marketing and Sales

With the onset of the pandemic, most brick-and-mortar stores and events moved to the virtual space to generate leads and drive sales. In contrast to traditional marketing, digital marketing takes place entirely online which is proven beneficial when a stringent physical distancing is in place.

With the enormous amount of data and handy analytics tools, businesses can gain insights and analyze performance to maximize return on investments and make informed decisions.

In Malaysia, there are several institutions that provide digital upskilling to ensure Malaysians succeed in the digital economy. For instance, Malaysian Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) offers digital skills training and courses for people with different levels of education, and also partners with top employers to provide digital reskilling for employees. Meanwhile, 42KL offers a free peer-to-peer program for people who are interested to jumpstart their career as a software engineer. Other similar initiatives include Akademi General Assembly (GA), NEXT Academy and Forward School.

What will the future workplace look like?

Remote working, once a fringe business practice, has become a required necessity for the masses. To adapt efficiently, businesses start leveraging communication and collaboration tools such as Trello, Slack, and Zoom to optimize work-from-home (WFH) productivity. Despite that, KPMG Malaysia reports that the challenges remain in terms of substandard network issues, digital communication barriers and lack of technology readiness.

Apart from that, during times of economic downturn, automation rapidly displaces human work as human capital becomes expensive in a financially-constrained business. While that is inevitable, automation and machines only primarily focus on data processing, manual jobs and administrative tasks, while humans still have the upper hand in skills such as decision-making and strategizing.

Hence, in a post-COVID-19 reality, robots and humans are expected to be working alongside each other. Workers who choose to adapt and possess a hybrid of soft and hard skills, especially ones that are digitally-driven, will remain relevant in a post-pandemic Malaysian job market.


WiseNetAsia Knowledge Center
Copyright © 2020 WiseNet Asia Pte Ltd.  All Rights Reserved


A guide on remote internships for interns and employers in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Australia, and China and the benefits that come with it.

Everywhere around the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has sent a large percentage of the total population to work and study from home. While the situation in some countries have changed for the better and people have gone back to resuming their daily lives with the ‘new normal’, most countries are still keeping their borders closed and have imposed an indefinite travel ban, making this a challenge for students keen on going for international internship programmes.

According to the Ivy Research Council, 89% of students pursuing a 2020 summer internship would prefer a remote internship over a canceled internship programme. As a result, an increasing number of employers with internship programmes across the world have opted to transition to remote internships, rather than cancelling or postponing their internship programmes.

What Is a Remote Internship?

Remote internships, also known as virtual internships, are unique in the sense the intern does not have to be in a physical office. Interns are interviewed and allowed to work from anywhere, including across states and countries. For example, the intern could be based at home in Singapore and is undergoing internship with a company in Malaysia, Thailand, Australia, or China.

Remote internship enables interns to work anywhere in the world

With the upcoming Industry 4.0, the increasing development of communication technologies, and new remote-working cultures, remote internships are the way forward at this age and time. All you need is a fully-functioning and stable internet connection, a reliable laptop or desktop computer, a webcam, headphones and a bold mindset and you are good to go.

While the working arrangements may be different, the timeline for remote internships is typically the same as collocated internships – 3 to 6 months, requiring 20 to 30 hours work per week.

Which Countries and Industries Offer Remote Internship?

Numerous countries have started to offer remote internships and this includes the world’s second-biggest economy – China. The country saw growth of 4.9% between the months of July and September, compared to the same quarter last year. Moreover, over the previous two decades, China saw an average economic growth rate of about 9%.

Chongqing’s rapid growth over the last 15 years has created remote internship opportunities for overseas students

In the city of Chongqing, located at Sichuan Province, the significant rise in its economy and rapid urbanization over the last 15 years has encouraged the rise in remote internship opportunities from entrepreneurial startups as well as larger well-known companies in a vast range of fields such as software engineering, accountancy, fashion, arts, and green technology.

As Chongqing rises to the 4th place among top 10 Chinese Cities by GDP in H1 2020, surpassing Guangzhou, Suzhou and Chengdu, the city’s rapid economic growth has created thriving business districts, with a diverse range of established companies including Apple, Deloitte, IBM, ZTE, Schlumberger, Schneider Electric, and ABB.

Already, the city attracts an ever-increasing number of career-minded young people from across China and around the world to gain professional experience through their remote internship programmes. With recent travel restrictions, there is no doubt that the numbers will increase.

Besides China, the same can be said with Singapore’s neighbouring countries – Malaysia, Thailand, and Australia. In those countries, remote internships are growing rapidly in popularity as a viable alternative for interns and employers since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

What are the Benefits of a Remote Internship?

Most of the benefits are similar to an in-person internship programmes such as gaining valuable work experience, developing and refining skills, and exploring the possibilities of a future career path. However, remote internships do offer unique benefits that cannot be obtained from traditional in-person internships.

Experience Remote Work

As more and more people in the workforce are encouraged and exposed to the idea to work remotely, landing a remote internship is a timely and smart move. Use this opportunity to gain valuable work experience and learn how to apply remote project management techniques, optimize on current resources, and utilize relevant software applications such as Microsoft Teams and Slack. Seize this moment to gain employability skills.

Reduced Costs

Going on an internship in another country can be challenging and costly for the intern as well as the employer. There is the air ticket fare, extra baggage, commuting expenses, accommodation rentals, and new equipment. With remote internship, cost-savings benefits include reduced traveling expenditures, lower or zero housing costs, and less office equipment expenses.

Greater Diversity and Global Perspective

Remote internship means you are no longer limited geographically. By removing location as a barrier for recruitment and employment, the pool of potential employers and interns open up significantly. You could have a team from Singapore, China, Australia, Malaysia and Thailand working on a project together. The diversity of ideas and backgrounds from people from all over the world create richer work environments and innovative outcomes.

Convenient Working Arrangements

Employers and interns typically find the flexible working package to be attractive. One such example is unlike a typical 9 to 5 office day internship programme, meetings can be done online and scheduled at a time that is convenient for everyone. There are no unnecessary disturbances and interruptions to the current workflow.

Increased Accountability, Productivity and Results

With clear deadlines, self-organization skills, self-discipline and time management skills, remote interns become more accountable when it comes to handling their own schedules and finishing tasks. Their productivity levels increase significantly and they produce better results. Furthermore, with the help of relevant task management software, a supervisor can now support and address the issues of many interns at one time, rather than 1 or 2 interns.

The COVID-19 pandemic has proved that working from home can be done efficiently and is still being done for many jobs and companies. Remote internships or virtual internships would not be any different. In fact, with the uncertain future that lies ahead, it is crucial for interns and employers to adapt to the situation. Even when the virus wanes, a remote internship programme is still a viable option.


October 2020

Successfully placed the role of AGM HR, Singapore for a real estate asset management company in Singapore

October 2020

Closed the position of Operation Manager, Singapore for a global logistics solutions provider