Currently, there are more than 3,000 job vacancies in the country’s plantation sector, waiting to be filled. However, there is an apparent lacking of interested candidates to take up the jobs.
This was revealed by the executive director of Malaysian Agricultural Plantation Association (MAPA), Mohamad Audong a few weeks back.
There can be two reasons here. Firstly, the candidates may not know the existence of these job vacancies. They either have not been working hard enough to find them, or companies in the plantation industry have not been advertising well. Both candidates and companies can be guilty here.
Secondly, the candidates know about the jobs but have little interest to apply. Simply put, they’re being choosy. To them, working in the plantation sector offers them little prospect in terms of career development as well as compensation and benefits. Plantation is being viewed pessimistically and is often categorized in the ‘old-fashion’ industry with no real umph. Here, the candidates are the guilty lot.
According to Mohamad again, Malaysians need to change their sentiment and mind set towards working in the plantation sector as it can actually be very rewarding. A general worker who does menial jobs can earn a minimum of RM600 monthly, while a semi-skilled worker can chalk up a pay between RM2,000 to RM3,000 per month. Naturally, as the worker holds up higher or more important positions, pay increase will be waiting, together with all the associated benefits.
Apart from the monetary compensation, other benefits and perks include accommodation, transportation, utility, medical benefits, EPF (Employee Provident Fund) deduction, Socso coverage and so on.
Half of the 125,000 workers currently employed by 400 members throughout the country are made up of foreigners. Probably not too surprising when there are little takers coming from the local scene.