Hong Kong has a higher number of working professionals who think their hard skills and soft skills are sufficient to succeed and stay relevant in the next three to five years, said Hays that recently released a report titled Uncovering the DNA of the Future Workplace.
The report is based on a survey of more than 9,000 working professionals in Asia in February and again in September 2020, the recruitment agency noted, adding that the overwhelming majority of respondents in Hong Kong regard upskilling as very important, particularly in the areas of digital and remote-working related skills.
The majority of respondents in Hong Kong (86%) are confident that their current skill sets will still be relevant in the next two to three years, a much higher percentage than those in China (74%) and Japan (71%).
While 80% of Hong Kong respondents believe their hard skills will still be relevant in the next three to five years, 67%felt their soft skills could use improvement.
When asked which upskilling/development opportunities have become more important to them after the pandemic took hold, the majority of respondents indicated ‘digital skills development’ (80%), followed by ‘remote orientation training’ (70%) and ‘change management’ (69%).
Employers must bridge the skills gap
While the number of employers in Hong Kong offering opportunities for digital skills development has significantly increased from only 15% pre-covid to 29% following the pandemic outbreak, there is much room for improvement in the number of employers currently offering development opportunities in remote orientation (32%), change management (27%), remote leadership (16%) and reskilling (18%), survey results indicate.
This could be the reason why only 37% of respondents in Hong Kong said their employer currently provides sufficient opportunities for upskilling — a stark contrast against 85% who consider it as important/very important to their professional development, Hays said.
“The survey results show that Hong Kong’s employers still have some way to go when it comes to offering learning and development opportunities,” said Jack Leung, Regional Director for Hays Hong Kong SAR. “Areas like digital skills and change management are considered important by respondents but are also vital for organisations to remain future proof. A workplace in the future in Hong Kong will realise this is a win-win equation and not only prioritise but encourage upskilling in these areas for its employees.”