Employment prospects in Malaysia are expected to be better in the next 12 months, according to a survey by JobStreet.com.
In the first quarter of the year, 43% of the survey respondents felt that the general job outlook would be slightly or much better in the next 12 months, which constituted to a rise from the previous quarter's 31% who answered similarly.
Twenty-nine per cent said the outlook would remain the same, while the balance 28% felt it could be slightly or much worse.
In general, for the first quarter, the Job Outlook Index registered 55 points, up six points from previously.
Asked to compare the job outlook for the first quarter of this year with a year earlier, 43% of the respondents forecast a slightly or much better outlook for this year.
However, there was a 12-point drop from the 55% who answered similarly last year.
Twenty-nine per cent felt that the job outlook for the quarter would remain the same as in the previous corresponding quarter.
The remaining 28% of the respondents stated that employment prospects would get slightly or much worse, a hike of 12 points from the 16% who had similar sentiment in the corresponding period last year.
On the state of the economy, 31% of the respondents felt that it was already slowing down, 28% said it has remained stagnant, 18% felt confident the economy was picking up and the remaining 24% were still uncertain.
On the employers' side, companies were still adopting a more cautious job outlook, with 44% of the respondents stating that their companies would be hiring fewer people and replacing or filling essential positions only in the next 12 months.
For most industries, jobseekers with skills in marketing and business development or sales marketing are the most sought-after, followed by those with expertise in customer service, and computer and information technology (software).
A total of 1,111 JobStreet.com clients, managers and senior managers across various industries in Malaysia participated in the survey conducted in March.