These are the roles employers in Asia demand the most — and they're willing to hire from abroad

Klaus Vedfelt | Getty

Looking to make your next career move in Asia? You may be in luck.

Employers in Asia are struggling to hire across several major fields, according to new research from global recruitment specialists Hays; and for the right candidate, they're willing to cast the net wide.

Based on feedback from more than 3,000 organizations covering 15 industries, Hays' 2018 Asia Salary Guide found that more than a third (37 percent) of employers in Asia think they lack the talent required to achieve their current business objectives for the year ahead.

That dearth of talent is most striking across six areas of expertise:

  • Accountancy & Finance
  • Engineering
  • IT
  • Marketing & Digital
  • Operations
  • Sales

To remedy this, employers are on the hunt for new talent — and they're looking both at home and abroad. Sixty percent of the employers surveyed across Mainland China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore said they would consider employing or sponsoring a qualified overseas candidate.

The report found that the degree of demand for each skill set differs according to experience levels, but one role stands out as the most difficult to hire for across the board: sales.

Employers recruiting across three experience levels — entry level, middle management and senior management — all said they especially struggle to fill sales roles.

Demand for other professions is more dependent on experience levels, the report found. Here's how they break down across the three categories:

Other roles considered in the ranking included banking, distribution, research and development, legal and supply chain.

Despite the apparent skills shortage, 66 percent of employers said they are confident or very confident that they will be able to recruit suitable candidates within the next 12 months.

Still, a notable third (34 percent) were concerned, saying that they are either not very or not at all confident.

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