There is an increasing demand for finance and accountancy professionals in Malaysia, as foreign direct investment across multiple sectors drives job growth in these areas.
There is a strong demand for financial analysts, financial controllers and financial shared services professionals within the commercial sector, Hays' Quarterly Report found.
"Employers are looking to hire solid financial planning and analysis professionals, business analysts and business partners to provide insight to top management, improve business performance and maintain investor confidence," said Tom Osborne, country manager of Hays in Malaysia.
"In these roles candidates need to be able a play a true business partner role rather than be part of the back-office function. Experience in strategic business development and financial planning is highly regarded."
International experience and regional exposure with multinational companies are expected to be held in high regard for the roles of CFOs and financial controllers. Demand for these professionals is strongest in the oil & gas, healthcare, technology and FMCG sectors.
Meanwhile, tax and audit professionals remain hard-to-find across the board, in both direct and indirect tax lines.
"Employers are looking for candidates with a mix of experience in both commercial and practice firms, and regional and transfer pricing experience is also in demand," said Osborne.
He pointed out that the growth in tax roles can be put down mainly to the GST implementation that will start in April 2015.
Businesses are also expected to look at improving processes for shared service centres (SSCs). Osborne noted that some of them are moving up the value chain. As a result, they require candidates with specialised knowledge in areas such as tax, statutory requirements, internal audit, process improvement and risk management.
"We anticipate that migration and scope expansion activities will create more jobs in SSCs, generating demand for project and change managers who have experience working in finance."