Rising job opportunities in Indonesia’s digital realm

  • Sixty percent jump in digital and e-commerce job opportunities
  • There is likely to be strong demand for fintech, logistics, and big data jobs


Rising job opportunities in Indonesia’s digital realm


INDONESIA has seen a large number of e-commerce and digital players rapidly expanding and hitting the market with demands for human capital.

According to the latest findings from recruitment consultancy firm, Michael Page Indonesia, the number of jobs driven by startups, financial technology (fintech) or e-commerce as well as Indonesian conglomerates has seen a 60% rise in the last one year.

“Indonesians have an entrepreneurial spirit which is further supported by the government’s funding for SMEs and startup businesses. Professionals are empowered by the idea of running their own company with the accompanying level of autonomy,” said Michael Page Indonesia digital and technology manager Imeiniar Chandra (pic).

Despite the significant growth of e-commerce and the demand for candidates with strong digital skills, Imeiniar sees challenges in the market.

“Most founders and entrepreneurs in the digital space are relatively young and they tend to change their mind quickly so it takes them longer to find suitable candidates,” she tells Digital News Asia (DNA).

Job-seekers on the other hand are seeking job opportunities in the digital and technology space but lack the necessary skills.

“When it comes to the digital ecosystem, it requires specific technical skills. Unfortunately, they might not have it. Some candidates who have good technical skills might not have good communication skills,” Imeiniar explains.

It is challenging therefore to bring companies and job-seekers together successfully.

“A company has to be flexible enough to train these candidates who in turn must be willing to fulfil the company’s requirements.”



Technology has also been increasingly integrated with a number of business units in every organisation. Therefore, digital professionals find themselves going through an average of three interview rounds with different stakeholders at the same employer before securing a position according to the survey.

When asked about how conglomerates manage digital transformation, Imeiniar says that employees must have the will to learn.

“Indonesia still adopts conventional ways of doing business. It depends on how the conventional employees will tilt to the millennials by teaching them skills in marketing for example, as not everything has to be digital. The millennials have to be able to train the older generation as well.”

Imeiniar believes that the Indonesian government is very supportive of the digital ecosystem.

“If you look at Indonesian infrastructure, it is much better now compared to five years ago. The government has also made it easier to set up a business here in Indonesia.”

The survey also revealed that employers in Indonesia take four months to secure talent for an opportunity. Up to three months is dedicated to an executive search. Hiring managers in Indonesia interview an average of six different professionals before making a job offer.

Imeiniar offers three main reasons to explain why employers in Indonesia take four months to hire someone.

“First, the founders of new tech companies tend to change mind regularly. Also, the lack of talent in the market is a problem. The company wants to hire the perfect candidate and they ignore what they have in front of them.

“Indonesia is a talent-driven market. One candidate might have three to four job offers and it creates competition in the market."

It is not uncommon for digital and technology professionals to receive multiple offers; the study also shows that candidates can be interviewing with as many as six different employers before accepting a final offer. The roles are currently in such high demand that counteroffers can be expected when moving between jobs.

“Indonesia is a talent-driven country. Companies in this country have to look out for local talent instead of hiring from overseas,” she explains.

As for the candidates, Imeiniar advises them to be honest about which skills they actually have.

“Candidates have to open up to potential employers by pushing beyond themselves to communicate well. The most important thing is to figure out how they will manage their weaknesses,” she says.

The survey showed that e-commerce companies seek candidates with strong digital skills and product knowledge, particularly in fashion and electronics.

 In addition, there is likely to be strong demand for fintech, logistics fulfilment, and big data services.

The market is generally evenly split between local and multinational players, who seek candidates of a similar profile.


Rising job opportunities in Indonesia’s digital realm


Educating the market

To Imeiniar, the challenge in the digital technology industry is educating the market.

“Everybody wants to go into digital and technology, but, we over-look the fact that Indonesia is only Jakarta. If we look at other small cities, people may not know the internet beyond Facebook. Educating them is important and challenging.”

She also thinks that there is a misconception in the digital word when it comes to hiring requirements.

“When a company uses the word digital in the hiring requirements, it does not mean that everything has to be done digitally and the job description may only involve helping the company post on social media.”

Imeiniar’s vision for the next two to three years is to see the market understanding what digital truly means.


Related Stories:

Boom in digital economy to draw Indonesians home

Digital transformation: Again, it is about people, not technology

Uniting to solve Indonesia’s ICT ecosystem woes

ICT has among the best-paying jobs in Malaysia: JobStreet Survey


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