With only 5% of Malaysians thinking they have ‘great jobs’, it is perhaps not surprising to find that professionals in Malaysia have the lowest engagement rate across the Asia Pacific region.

According to a new research paper by Workday and IDC, only 23% of Malaysians stated they are engaged and satisfied at work.

This was the lowest percentage in Asia Pacific.

Singapore fared slightly better, with an engagement and satisfaction rate of 25%, while Hong Kong secured a 28%.

Overall, 35% of the Asia Pacific respondent pool said are moderately satisfied and engaged at work.

The countries with the largest proportion of respondents who are completely or "very engaged" and satisfied at work are the Philippines (59%), India (59%) and Australia (42%).

The survey also delved into the top drivers for employee satisfaction and engagement across countries.

Within Malaysia, the survey found better pay was the number of driver boosting satisfaction at work for employees.

This was followed by enjoyable work and a work-life harmony.

IDC infographic


Besides these drivers, the survey noted the top element for boosting productivity at work in Malaysia was better defined goals and responsibilities.

Across Asia Pacific, however, improved collaboration (39%) was the most critical factor to increasing productivity, followed by having better defined goals and responsibilities (37%) and more flexibility (36%).

"Collaboration can contribute to improving productivity levels, but achieving this often requires a fundamental shift in the organisation's culture, structures and processes, as well as using better tools," the survey stated.

"Incremental improvements can also be obtained by better defining employee goals, roles and responsibilities. Many employees are not comfortable when dealing with uncertainty and are more effective if roles and responsibilities are clearly defined. In fact, only 12% of the Asia Pacific respondent pool strongly agree when asked if they know what their employers expect from them."