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How To Prepare For The Future Job Market: Get Better At Tech and Human Skills

Telenor Group recently released the results of a pilot online survey across six nations in Asia, including Bangladesh, assessing millennials’ attitudes about their future career, technology’s impact and the skills they need to be best prepared for the jobs of tomorrow.

The results indicate that the nation’s young adults see the importance of technology in their vocational paths.

The multi-market ‘Jobs of the Future’ survey obtained 4,200 respondents aged 15 to 25, in Bangladesh, Singapore, Malaysia, India, Myanmar and Pakistan. It was conducted via targeting through the Telenor Group Facebook with a sample size of 700 secondary school, or university students per market used in the results analysis.

“Our Facebook channel reaches an active, young – and largely Asian – following, so we felt that this would be a great place to pilot such a survey,” said Sheena Lim, Director of Social Media, Telenor Group. “We thought this would combine the fun, engaging side of social media surveys with potentially interesting insights into Asian youth attitudes on technology and their future careers.”

Bangladesh’s youth: Digital technology key to future careers

In Bangladesh, 60% of millennials said they were ‘excited’ about future opportunities in the internet and digital sectors, with the largest majority (30%) saying they were ‘extremely excited.’ Additionally 59% in Bangladesh said that mobile/internet technology will be ‘important’ in their career by 2020, mirroring the average of 63% of youth aggregated in all six nations who agreed with this. Indicating just how significant youth in Bangladesh think it is, only 1.4% said that technology is ‘not really important’ for their futures.

Build human skills, too

The surveyed youth in all but one of the countries agreed that non-technical skills will also be important for jobs of the future. The highest numbers of Bangladeshi (34%), Pakistani (37%) and Indian (36%) and youth maintained that the most important skills to a great future job will be the ‘ability to inspire others, and leadership capability.’ More than one in four of the surveyed Singaporean youth regard ‘people management and emotional intelligence’ (27%).

Nearly one in three Myanmar youth leaned toward ‘creativity, cognitive flexibility’ (29%). The standout in this category was Malaysia, where 24% of the surveyed stated that tech-related ‘mobile and web development, and super coding skills,’ were the most important. The skills that Bangladesh’s millennials rated as the least important future job skills are: data analysis, research and interpretation (9%).

Robots will replace humans in many future professions

All of the Bangladeshi youth surveyed agreed that robots will replace humans in many future professions, as did all the participating countries. On which jobs robots would most likely replace humans in, 44% of Bangladeshi respondents predicted that the manufacturing and engineering industries would see the most machine takeovers.

Fascinatingly, 21% of locals further said that the proliferation of robots will not affect them much. The other surveyed nations were united with this sentiment that robots will replace humans in manufacturing or engineering led by Malaysia (44%), forty-one percent of surveyed in Myanmar, followed by 38% in both Singapore and India, and 34% in Pakistan.

What Asia’s youth think they bring to the career table

When youth were asked to describe the qualities that best encapsulate themselves as young thinkers and students, the most youth in Bangladesh (26%), Singapore (32%) and Malaysia (24%) and chose to say they were ‘compassionate with a sense of justice and a desire to protect.’

The largest group in Pakistan (24%) described themselves as armed with ‘strategic vision and big-picture mindsets.’ Whereas most in Myanmar (30%) and India (24%) stated they were ‘highly creative, intuitive thinkers.’ n the contrary, Bangladeshi respondents (14%) were least likely to say they were equipped with ‘mathematical prowess and advanced analytical skills,’ as were those in Myanmar (13%) and India (14%).

Hungry for technology and human connections

Bangladesh’s millennials also appeared enthusiastic for a technology-driven future. Youth in Bangladesh, Pakistan, Myanmar and India all agreed with the statement: ‘It’s important to understand all kinds of technology – I want to know as much as I can!,’ with Myanmar topping the scale at 34% of respondents, and Bangladesh at 30%.

Singapore and Malaysia admire the human aspects of technology; with 31% of Singaporeans and 28% of Malaysians saying that the best thing about the internet is that it ‘connects us to all kinds of people and ideas.’

“It’s fascinating to see that young adults not only revere technology and the opportunities it presents them, but also see themselves as ‘compassionate’, and ‘highly creative’. The fact they are aligned in not only believing that technology and the internet are crucial for their careers, but that they are excited about this, is very motivating to us.

They reflect the way Telenor Group views Asia—as a vibrant region with talented and promising youth who look to make meaningful contributions in their jobs of the future,” said Yasu Sato, Head of Digital Capabilities, People Development, Telenor Group.

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