Lady using Apple macbook

This 4 parts article series is to place focus on the issues that are faced by the Human Resource department of companies in Malaysia. Additionally, HR will be used to refer human resource from this point forward.

The purpose of this series is to uncover the cause & effect of the issues that’s been plaguing the HR department in Malaysia. Then, provide a viable solution for said issues. Part 1 of this series is all about the issues for HR in Malaysia.

From high turnover rate, low L&D participation, and disengaged workforce. These are only some of the few issues a company is facing nowadays in regard to human resource.

High Turnover Rate

The most prominent issue and a priority to solve is the high turnover rate. Where the lack of career progression and wanting to seek fresh challenges are the leading cause of turnover. (Michael Page, 2015). In which both aspects are controllable by the company themselves. A previous study has shown that such issue causes the company to have lower productivity and drains organization profits. Hidden cost such as loss of opportunity and productivity takes up approximately 77.5% of the costs.

It is impeccable that issue on high turnover should be attended to quickly. As it is financially costly due to constant time spending and resources on hiring and training the new employee. An additional effect of high turnover is low morale of other employees and can cause a flood of people leaving. Remaining employee will receive extra stress for filling the gap until a new employee is hired. Where if continued, will result in the remaining employee to leave as well. In general, the high turnover rate is deadly as it could cause a chain reaction when not solved quickly.

Empty cubicles and computers

Low L&D Participation

An empty lecture hall is what most would fear, as it indicates low participants of learning & development courses from the employees. The effect of low L&D participants is simple, it results in a workforce who are not up to date with current knowledge and technology. This means that the workforce of the company will have the same productivity regardless of technology or effort. Or worse, become redundant and obsolete, in which the company can no longer catch up with their competitors. All simply because of low L&D participants from the employees themselves. The main reason for low participation is due to the lack of motivation. As most employees perceive training as tedious or simply irritable when they have more pressing tasks on hand. A refresher course, in particular, is due to the perceived unimportance or the lack of incentive from participating.

The unwillingness of employee to join the l&d program can be broken into 3 reasons.

  1. The lack of marketing plan.
    • The objective of the training program should be communicated properly. As employees first thought when receiving invitation or news on a new training program is “What’s in it for me?”.
  2. Flexibility 
    • Or in this case, the lack of it. Training programs nowadays need to be flexible as employees prefer to partake in their own preferred time.
  3. Modality 
    • In which that not everyone can learn using the same way. The employee has close to zero interest in the training program when it is catered to a mass audience in a generic setting. In which the employee has perceived as a non-effective method by the employee.
“You cannot push anyone up the ladder unless he is willing to climb.”
– Andrew Carnegie

Disengaged Workforce

A disengaged workforce is a non-productive workforce. Where the employees simply work to fill their quota and will not go over and beyond their perceived responsibility. In which, the employee has no desire to improve their workflow or intention to give an alternative for improvement. The causes of a disengaged workforce are range from no incentive to work harder, boredom at work, feel unsatisfied, and lack challenging work.

Disengaged and actively disengaged employee are the 2 type of disengagement. An actively disengaged employee will purposely siphon off employer’s time and resources. They could also undo the work of an actively engaged employee which would, in turn, lower the morality. Thus possibly resulting in higher turnover rate.

Gamification is a solution to these said issues. In which, the next article of the series will cover it more in details.