COVID-19 has resulted in a global recession and mass unemployment, and Malaysia has not been spared. 

As a result, a majority (92%) of Malaysians have admitted to experiencing some level of stress over losing their jobs, revealed a YouGov survey of 665 Malaysians employed in full-time jobs.

About two in ten (23%) feel a little stressed, while 47% felt somewhat stressed and 23% felt very stressed. Only a small percentage (8%) said they did not feel stressed at all.

The survey also revealed that 25% of Malaysian employees felt insecure in their jobs - up 5% compared to a pre-pandemic era.

One in twenty (6%) feel ‘very insecure’ and 19% feel ‘somewhat insecure’, while 18% felt neither secure nor insecure. The good news is, more than half (57%) still felt secure in their jobs. 

Unsurprisingly, those who felt very insecure were also the most likely to feel very stressed, with 44% saying so, as compared with those who felt very secure (14%).

By income level, middle-income earners, with a monthly household income between RM4,000 to RM7,900, were the most likely to feel secure in their jobs (64%). Whereas, low-income earners, with a monthly household income of less than RM4,000 a month, were the least likely to say the same (53%). 

yougov my job insecurity

Other notable findings from the survey include: 

  • In the event of losing their jobs tomorrow: 
    • 71% believed it will be difficult to find another one of similar pay and benefits
    • 49% thought it will be 'somewhat difficult'
    • 31% felt it would be 'very difficult'
    • 18% were indifferent
    • 7% felt it would be easy
  • If they found themselves unemployed the next day:
    • 28% believed they will be able to find a new job within three months
    • 18% thought this will take three to six months
    • 23% felt it will take between six months to a year 
    • 15% thought it will take more than a year to find another job
    • 15% were unsure
  • To find another job with a similar position:
    • 41% of Malaysian employees would be willing to take a pay cut of up to 20%
    • 20% were willing to take a cut of between 21% and 40%
    • 13% were willing to take a cut of more than 40%, with low-income earners being the most willing and high-income earners the least willing (15% vs 4%)
    • 26% were unwilling to take any sort of pay cut
    • By gender, men were less willing to take a pay cut than women (23% vs 29%).

Infographic / YouGov

Lead image / 123RF