Fresh grads reveal employer of choice

HAVING emerged from the limitations of studying amid a Covid-19 pandemic, the new cohort of graduates from the University of Nottingham Malaysia (UNM) share the key characteristics that they seek in their prospective employers.

Environmental sciences graduate Damia Munira Bakhthiar believes in the importance of work-life balance. She is looking to be part of a healthy and ethical company culture in which employees and the environment are respected.

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“I would like the opportunity to keep learning and growing, so my employer of choice would be an organisation that offers capacity-building opportunities with experienced specialists, paired with the availability of relevant facilities around the workplace to support my professional growth,” she said in a press release.

Brendan Chew Yiun Cherk, a BA (Hons) in International Communication Studies with Film and Television graduate, echoed Damia’s views.

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“I value an employer or a workplace that allows for the healthy growth and career progression of its employees through plenty of opportunities.

“This could be through courses, networking, teambuilding, exchange programmes, and feedback sessions. Transparency is also important,” he said.

The Ampang native believes that it is also vital for workplaces to emphasise the humane aspect of work.

“Productivity can be achieved without being at the expense of employees’ mental health and overall well-being,” he added.

Masters in mechanical engineering holder Suggensheevan Suthagar described his ideal workplace as an organisation that provides “opportunities for development, good remuneration and benefits, and a supportive work environment”.

The 24-year-old Penangite said: “In addition to taking into account the current cost of living, these factors, on top of clear career advancement opportunities, all play a role in employee motivation and productivity.”

Good colleagues and a well-equipped workstation are on Johorean Tan Kang Rui’s wish list.

He also hopes that employers see the value in supporting an employee’s lifelong learning ambitions, such as pursuing postgraduate studies.

The youngest of five siblings, Tan graduated with a degree in civil engineering at UNM.

Debra Wong, who holds a degree in international relations with French, believes the three key characteristics of a good employer are empathy, accountability and clarity of purpose.

The Kuching lass said: “I hope to work with managers or employers who take the time to understand the factors that affect my work productivity.

“Moreover, I would enjoy working with employers who are intentional about building rapport with employees, and providing mentorship, opportunities and resources for career growth.

“The working world can be hard to navigate, so I look forward to having someone in the workplace who will invest in me, point out my mistakes, along with showing me ways that I can do better.”Cognisant that every workplace has its values, vision and mission, Wong said it is crucial that employers are accountable for their values and take ownership of their work.

“Modelling these values encourages employees to do the same,” said Wong.

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