WHILE disruption has undoubtedly been the norm since the outbreak of the global pandemic in late 2019, we have also witnessed digital acceleration aligned with the fourth industrial revolution in both business and consumer behaviours – making it impossible to deny that digital transformation has become imperative.
Businesses in the post-pandemic era will need to hire the right talents to embrace widespread transformation in the age of digital revolution, which can not only help them drive rapid adoption of digital products and solutions, but also grow digital strategy and use technology for expansion.
This means that graduates with a future-proof skill set – such as in the areas of remote business management, cloud-enabled operations, contactless delivery, artificial intelligence, robotics, the Internet of Things and industrial automation – will be in great demand.
Growing in tandem to adapt to these changes in business and society has been the digital transformation wave across all Asia Pacific University of Technology and Innovation’s (APU) business programmes.
“The skill sets of tomorrow’s business graduates are multi-faceted and technology-infused. As the market transitions towards a more digital focus in terms of how business is conducted and measured, so too must education providers and graduates,” states APU School of Business head Assoc Prof Dr Jason Turner.
Yasmin Soraya Abdul Rahman, who graduated in 2021, shares that she has leveraged knowledge gained from her university studies to excel at her first job as a talent acquisition and branding specialist at one of the Big Four accounting firms, KPMG Malaysia.
“As a business student at APU, I was consistently reminded of how important technology is in the business sphere. Despite majoring in general international business management, my course was inclusive of e-business modules that have undoubtedly broadened my understanding of the ever-changing business environment and how it becomes a key driver to securing competitive advantage,” recalls Yasmin.
In her job role strategising and coordinating branding and attracting talent, Yasmin utilises her knowledge and skills, particularly in social customer relationship management strategies, interactive advertising and social media marketing.
Consequently, the strong presence of the firm’s online branding and digital media communications secured her and her team an annual Top-10 client’s choice award.
The benefit of tech-edge qualifications offered by APU is also testified by Juliana Winata, who has just been conferred a BA (Hons) in Business Management with a specialism in e-business.
“Through e-business learning, I have learned how to build a business from the ground up, not just in theory, but practical learning of how to establish a business online, sell goods, market goods, service customers, as well as collaborate with business partners,” she says.
Emphasising hands-on or experiential learning, APU’s School of Business has partnered with e-commerce platform HomeDeal through a memorandum of understanding signed in 2018, which enables students to experience real-life business within a supportive classroom environment with no risk or capital investment.
“It is as close to real life as we can replicate, where students get to experience the emotions of working in e-commerce, as well as being able to measure themselves in terms of market outcomes,” explains Dr Turner.
More than 250 students from eight intakes have participated in this e-commerce project and generated revenue from December 2019 to August 2021.
Students who are under APU’s bachelor’s degree programmes can opt-in for the APU-DMU Dual Degree Scheme, where they will receive two degree certificates and transcripts upon graduation, namely one from APU and one from United Kingdom’s De Montfort University.
According to the latest Annual Graduate Tracer Study by the Higher Education Ministry, 100% of APU graduates were employed upon graduation, which clearly indicates the higher education institution’s success and pride in nurturing professionals for global careers.
To find out more about APU’s tech-infused business programmes, visit https://apu.edu.my/.