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Upskilling in technology can get you a job based in Asia Pacific

SOURCE: Photo by Philip FONG / AFP
An official (L) wearing a face mask checks a computer as a greeting robot named "Pepper" (R) stands by in a hotel during the first day the building is used as a new medical lodging facility to accommodate COVID-19 coronavirus patients with mild symptoms in Tokyo on May 1, 2020.


By U2B Staff 

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Remote working shifted from a company perk to the new normal in 2020. One main benefit of remote working is that people can get hired in companies based overseas as geographical boundaries cease to exist, especially if they are upskilling in the latest technology.

Start-ups and companies based on technology such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), robot process automation (RPA) and cloud computing are currently thriving as these are being adopted by more businesses to streamline operations.

In Asia Pacific specifically, technology is advancing at such a rapid rate – leading to a demand for skilled experts in these cutting-edge areas. Industries such as e-commerce – which runs on new technologies – are seeing major growth.

According to TechWire Asia, “The coronavirus pandemic has only accelerated a trend that was burgeoning across the continent in the past few years: online purchasing is here to stay in Asia. The number of e-commerce adopters is strongly correlated with the high internet penetration and strong presence of related startups in the region (over 7,000 startups as of May 2019).

“Prior to the spread of COVID-19, many Asian states had been seeing increased affluence and vital economic growth. This combined with locally-oriented e-commerce startups and an increasing want for convenience, speed, and variety of products has caused a number of major cities in Asia to become e-commerce hubs for their countries and their neighbours.”

According to LinkedIn’s Future of Skills report in 2019, a number of rising skills are transforming industries with new innovations in the Asia Pacific region.

“Today every business leader, every hiring manager, and every recruiter is facing the pinch of the talent crunch. A very significant driver of this talent crunch is the lack of availability of skills and skills instability.”

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Developing soft skills for a new era in technology

While it’s important for upskilling in technology and digital skills to prepare yourself for the future of work and gain employability, keep in mind that you should also work on your soft skills.

LinkedIn surveyed both employees and L&D professionals across APAC, and found that both groups place value on soft skills particularly when it comes to career progression.

“While robots and automation may displace routine work done by humans, 44% of surveyed APAC talent thought higher-level thinking would remain vital in a tech-dominated world.

“Adjusting to robots in the workplace will require soft skills. 43% of APAC employees say soft skills will help them adjust and retrain to keep their roles.”

Piyush Gupta, CEO, DBS Bank, was quoted in the report, “In my view, in the next 10 years, the skills you need are the soft skills. You will need philosophy, psychology and emotional science because the biggest challenge in society in the next 10 years is having to reimagine the rules of society. What does it mean to have AI in our lives?”

Besides soft skills, these are the top in-demand tech skills if you’re interested in working for companies based in Asia Pacific – and how you can upskill and reskill in these areas.

Blockchain

This latest technology is complex, but has risen in popularity and usage over the past few years due to the growth of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. Blockchain is now being adopted in multiple industries from security to healthcare to education.

Experts are needed in Asia Pacific to work in occupations such Chief Technology Officer, Blockchain Consultant and Blockchain Developer.

You can learn the fundamentals of Blockchain via online courses or even learn how to apply it to a business. If you’re interested in becoming a developer, there are also a number of online resources for upskilling in this latest technology.

For more advanced studies, you could also enrol for an online degree in Blockchain.

Artificial Intelligence

According to the LinkedIn report, professionals with AI skills study and design intelligent agents to perform human-like tasks.

Countries in Asia Pacific such as China, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and Hong Kong are pioneers in AI, but also lack educated professionals who are able to handle and execute AI-related technologies.

Upskilling in Artificial Intelligence is not an easy task as it’s a complex technology, but if you have the passion and interest you can start by mastering the basics through subfields such as machine learning, deep learning and neural networks.

There is also an AI for Everyone: Master the Basics online course to understand key concepts behind Artificial Intelligence.

Many AI-based courses are delivered on education platforms in partnership with Ivy League universities such s Harvard and Columbia, where you can even earn a MicroMasters credential.

Continuous Integration

For software engineers looking for areas in upskilling, they should consider continuous integration – which is the regular merging of developers’ work onto one shared platform – is a major in-demand skill in Asia Pacific.

Those who have the necessary expertise can work as DevOps, Full Stack or software engineers. To upskill in continuous integration, check out online courses in this area so you can become trained in developing the latest software.

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