Increased regulatory scrutiny on all financial services organizations drove the demand for legal and compliance professionals in order to ensure adherence, with 36% increase in advertisements for this particular talent, in the Q1 of 2016 versus the same period the year before. There was also an increase (15%) in finance and accounting professionals in the same quarter.
In China, accounting and finance job advertising saw a 12% increase from Q1 2015 as a result of more shared services centers moving to China and a strong demand for commercially-minded accountants to help companies identify growth areas.
Hong Kong’s legal and compliance job advertising saw annual growth of 28% as banks continued to grow their compliance functions and buy-side firms continued to develop their internal compliance capability due to increasing regulatory pressure.
Malaysia’s traditionally strong legal and compliance sector experienced a further 26% increase in job advertising as organizations outside of banking such as commerce and technology saw a growing need for strengthening internal controls.
Large demand for IT professionals
Meanwhile, the technology boom in Asia has shown more signs of progression as IT becomes increasingly integrated within every facet of an organization’s day to day processes and operations. As more companies integrate technology into every facet of their daily operations and implement large-scale IT projects, job advertising volumes for professionals skilled in cyber security, FinTech and e-commerce have shown particularly strong growth (16%). As these remain niche skill areas, such talent are highly sought after in Asia.
The popularity of social media and e-commerce has also impacted the digital landscape. Businesses are constantly enhancing their consumer relationship strategies in order to better engage with their audience and build an online presence.
In Singapore, continued investment and interest from venture capital companies in technology start-ups drove job volumes for IT professionals up 8%. Demand from the mushrooming e-commerce and digital sectors saw a 19% spike in marketing job advertisements as companies sought to utilise more creative channels to connect with consumers.
In Hong Kong, IT professionals remained in demand with a 19% year-on-year increase in the number of job advertisements. The market remained candidate-short, particularly for professionals with experience in growth areas such as FinTech, e-commerce and IT security.
In Malaysia, the technology sector’s focus on information security has driven the demand for cyber security and data protection services in Malaysia.