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Education Ministry's Industry Relations Division director Professor Dr Arham Abdullah (centre) accompanied by GTI Media managing director Isaac Hee (left) presents the ‘Graduate Employer of The Year’ award to Maybank group chief human capital officer Nora Abd Manaf during the Malaysia’s 100 Leading Graduate Employers Awards Ceremony 2018 in Kuala Lumpur. - NSTP/LUQMAN HAKIM ZUBIR

KUALA LUMPUR: Maybank, Malaysia's largest financial services group and the leading banking group in South East Asia, emerged as the most popular employer among university students and graduates in Malaysia.

This was based on the latest Malaysia's 100 Leading Graduate Employer survey.

Feted at the Malaysia’s 100 Leading Graduate Employers Awards Night 2018 held last night, Maybank was followed closely by first runner-up Pricewaterhouse Cooper and second runner-up Ernst & Young (EY).

According to organiser GTI Media Sdn Bhd, the Malaysia’s 100 ranking was formed by responses from 36,207 respondents from various universities across the country from the start of the year up till September.

Through what is termed as the Malaysia Graduate Barometer, respondents selected from a list of over 200 employers in various career sectors that most interest them, before they considered and selected the employers of their choice.

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They also provided information on factors of employment attractiveness such as expected income for first jobs, desired working hours, preferred region for relocation and important employer characteristics.

“The award is a privilege and recognition to recognise the nation and leading companies in the country towards shaping our future leaders that await Malaysia in the years to come," said GTI Media managing director Isaac Hee.

Among the key findings of the 2018 survey is that the most important factors named by graduates when choosing an employer are career prospects, training and development, and good leadership style. The least important factors, meanwhile, are a high starting salary, status and prestige and an attractive location.

Respondents are prepared to spend 8.4 hours working per day in their first job and expect a salary of RM2,792 in their first professional position.

Also present was Education Ministry's Industry Relations Division director Professor Dr Arham Abdullah.

The survey is able to provide a list of outstanding graduate employers in Malaysia, across 19 key sectors, as chosen by the future workforce of the country.

“It is a platform that enables both parties to bridge the gap between student expectations and what employers can really offer," said Hee.

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