What Malaysian Businesses Need to Know About The Great Resignation — and Why It’s Crucial to Success

February 8, 2022
Nicholas K

You might have seen the phrase, Great Resignation, being thrown about with alarming regularity in recent months — after all, 2021 was said to be an unprecedented year for employee resignations throughout Malaysia, and all across the globe. This came down to a number of factors, including the economic and psychological effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a shift in the mindset of the average employee. 

Some of these employees left their employers for better prospects elsewhere, while others went into the growing gig economy; many also opted to go into business for themselves. Consequently, employers and HR professionals have started the year with questions on how to keep their best employees — or even strategies to improve HR recruitment efforts in 2022.

But in order to do all of the above, you’ll need to first understand what The Great Resignation even means for business in Malaysia, and beyond. 

Why the Great Resignation is happening

Essentially, The Great Resignation has been a trend triggered by the pandemic — although it could be argued that the trend was merely accelerated by the various shifts in the business landscape ever since COVID-19 came into play. Some argue that the great resignation is simply about flexibility, and the permanent evolution of the job market, but the truth is probably more complicated than that. 

A lot of things come into play, but in general, 2021 has seen a shift in the worker mindset, one that requires employers to focus on the well-being of their employees. “It’s still a buyer’s market”, some might argue, but the reality is that the pandemic has further highlighted the undeniable fact that people are a company’s greatest assets — which should consequently shape the HR policies of the most successful companies out there. 

Consider the stance taken by business leaders who have implemented permanent flexible work models, and you’ll note that employee well-being has become a pillar of every effective recruitment and employee retention programme. Read more about that here

How you can focus on employee well-being

Employee well-being is a very broad term, and it encompasses a number of elements including mental health, personal and career growth, and even flexibility that employees might need. In general however, you should keep the following in mind when designing new initiatives to improve the well-being of your staff: 

  • Empower your employees 
  • Design a great employee experience 
  • Prioritise the mental health of your employees 
  • Offer employees exposure across different teams 

Additionally, consider offering employees flexibility — this can come in the form of hybrid work models, with many corporations still using team a/b work arrangements as a transition between remote work and traditional office setups. In addition to being a safety precaution in light of the pandemic and the Omicron variant, this also allows employees the room to manoeuvre in terms of personal and family commitments. 

Of course, flexibility doesn’t mean that employee productivity must suffer. Instead, with the right tools and strategies, you can even improve productivity with flexibility. Read more about that here.

Because The Great Resignation Isn’t Simply About Quitting  

When you think about the word resignation, it sounds a lot like quitting — they are synonyms, after all. But it’s important to draw a distinction here, because The Great Resignation isn’t so much about quitting, as it’s more of a Great Change, or even Great Reshuffle. That’s because employees aren’t simply quitting, but moving for greener pastures available in the job market — and it isn’t just about the money, with employees now prioritising mental health more than ever, as revealed in this survey

These have been triggered by “pandemic epiphanies”, as first coined in a BBC report, which are sudden realisations by individuals who discover that they want more out of their careers. We’ve seen drastic changes in the market since COVID-19 first hit on a global scale back in 2020, with a great boom in e-commerce, while the hospitality and travel sectors have been among the hardest hit. 

This has been reflected in The Great Resignation — which has seen workers moving around at historically high rates. As such, it’s important to design employee-centric initiatives if you want to attract the best talent — in Malaysia, and beyond. 

Keep the following key points in mind when designing these initiatives: 

  • Empower employees with Purpose & Values 
  • Design an Inclusive Culture
  • Adopt a Data-Driven Approach 
  • Offer Flexibility & Resources

Read more about that here.

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altHR: Taking care of employees and employers

That’s all a part of our long-term aim: to enable Malaysian businesses to be awesome at doing what they do with Digi’s super app, altHR. 

Manually keeping track of HR processes like leave entitlements, payroll, and even performance reviews for employees can be a challenging process for employers and HR professionals — but it doesn’t have to be. 

altHR can help with this. The Leaves module (one of the most popular features on the app) is a comprehensive tool that helps to keep track of your employees leave allocations, requests, and policies. 

You’ll even be able to handle the more complex aspects of leave policies, such as the different entitlements for different groups of employees based on tenure with the company, marital status, levels, carry-forward balances, replacement leave policy, and even leave reports. There are even options for automatic carry-forward leave balances, or custom limits you can set. 

And of course, all of that works seamlessly with the other modules in the new normal, such as Highlights,  Documents, Expense and Payroll Management. 

HR professionals are often faced with daunting, often tedious tasks on a daily basis — tasks that have become even more difficult to handle in light of the ongoing COVID-19 situation. 

But help is available, if you know where to look. Let us streamline your HR processes by managing and automating day-to-day tasks, so you won’t have to worry about things like paperwork, privacy concerns, time-tracking, or onboarding challenges.

Sign up for altHR, the all-in-one digital solution that covers everything from payroll and onboarding, to staff management and providing employees with information kits. You’ve done it the old way long enough.

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