Choosing the wrong career can make or break your life. Of course, you should choose something you like to do, but you should also consider your finances.
From that perspective, author Miya Tokumitsu busts the myth of choosing a job you love because that brings a lot of financial disadvantages, including debt.
That’s why, before settling on a career, it’s best to find out which are the highest paying jobs in Malaysia. We’ll tell you the salary you can expect, what you’ll be doing, plus the pros and cons.
Avoid getting a job that makes you feel miserable or one that doesn’t pay the bills. Read the article below!
1. Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)
Certified ethical hackers are not what you’re expecting. You won’t have to break into the FBI database for a living, nor spy on your neighbours.
Ethical hackers have the same skills and abilities as the hackers you see in movies, but they’re the good guys. As such, you’ll be using your expertise to figure out whether some of your company’s IT systems are prone to malevolent hacking.
Therefore, you’ll appraise how safe your company’s IT systems are and what you can do to secure them even further. One challenge is that you’ll have to take into account two perspectives, the legal and the ethical one.
Another challenge is that you’ll be tempted to use your knowledge for the dark side, especially if you’re privy to top-secret information.
Salary: RM 63,000/ year
2. Search Engine Optimisation Manager
Search engine optimisation is essential in this highly-digitalised world. That’s because all companies have websites, but the good ones are ranked highest on Google and other search engines.
Your job will be to devise effective strategies so that your company appears among the first results. This job is challenging and fast-paced because you’ll have a lot of attributions, plus you’ll always have to learn new things.
As an SEO manager, you’ll have to ensure your company’s website responds to people’s needs. As such, you’ll have to analyse market data, publish consumer-oriented content, plus ensure the web site’s design is intuitive.
Apart from doing all these things, being an SEO manager requires good problem-solving abilities, as well as insight into the consumer’s minds. You should also expect to spend a lot of hours doing your research and coordinating your team.
Salary: RM 106,000/ year
3. Electric & Gas Operations Manager
If you like exact sciences and solving problems, consider becoming an Electric and Gas Operations Manager. You’ll need a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical or Electrical Engineering along with skills like proactivity, attention to details, and strategising. Besides, you have to know how to delegate tasks to your team and coordinate them well. As such, you need good communication and team-work abilities.
Remember you’ll be responsible for the construction, maintenance, and repair of various electric and gas systems. This job is very taxing and it involves a lot of responsibility, but it definitely pays better than other jobs.
Salary: RM 200,000/ year
4. Insurance Agent
As an insurance agent, you’ll sell insurance policies to people such as car insurance, life insurance, home insurance, and so forth.
The best parts of this job are that you can keep a flexible schedule and that you don’t need a university degree. As such, you won’t have to show up for work at 8 am and no one will complain if you take a two-hour lunch break. Moreover, you can be a self-educated man and nobody will bat an eye.
However, keep in mind that you’ll be living off commissions. Not having a fixed income can be a disadvantage at least at first, until you build your database of customers and grow your network.
Being an insurance agent isn’t easy if you’re starting with zero people in your network because you’ll have to attract customers that keep in touch with another agent. It’s also tough if you’re an introvert or if you’re not a salesy, persuasive people-person.
So think long and hard about this. If you succeed, you can make it big. Otherwise, you’ll have just a small income.
Salary: RM 37,000/year
5. Talent Acquisition Specialist
This job title makes you feel like you’ll be dressing in glitter and saying snobbish things in French to people. With a raised eyebrow and an opera-length cigarette holder in your hand.
But that’s not the case. A talent acquisition specialist puts companies into contact with the best possible employees. You’ll work together with a company to:
- Advertise its strong points to its target audience of possible employees, using the best channels
- Interview people and sieve the best candidates for certain jobs
Being a talent acquisition specialist requires certain skills, such as being a good observer and an apt communicator. Besides, you need a knack for research because you’ll have to make effective plans to target potential candidates.
You should also polish your negotiating skills because once you pick up top talent, they may prefer to work for the competition. That’s why you should be very good at bargaining and at intuiting people’s Achilles heels.
Salary: RM 61,000/ year
Being a ghostwriter means writing content for companies or advertising agencies without taking credit for the work you’re doing. You can’t claim any rights after sending your content over to your employer, but that can be a small price to pay when you’re looking at the salary.
Another advantage apart from the pay is that you can keep flexible hours. Besides, you can choose a specialised niche that you’re very good at, such as cyber-fantasy horror short stories.
You can write anything from songs to blog articles, editorial pieces, or any sort of web content, including comments.
The downside, apart from not getting any credit for your work, is that ghostwriting is difficult at first. Until you establish a portfolio and a network of trustworthy clients, you can expect to work for less money or meet some fickle people.
Salary: RM 84,000/ year
7. Oil Rig Drilling Engineer
Oil rig drilling engineering is a sought-after job because the demand is currently sky-rocketing. So, if your people skills are not very good, but you’re good at math and sciences, you should definitely consider this job.
This job is also a good idea for introverts or people who don’t mind being away from their friends or families. That’s because your new work and home will be in the middle of the ocean. Although that gives you some great views and challenging experience, it can still get to be too much for some people.
Besides, your work shifts will be pretty long, which means you need some extra endurance. However, oil rig drilling engineers have nice salaries and you’ll definitely challenge your limits.
Salary: RM 120,000/ year
As people work longer hours, they’re sitting down for longer, slouching over their keyboards or clenching over their steering wheels. Even at home, they’re lying in all sorts of uncomfortable positions on their couches watching TV.
It’s no wonder that poor posture together with non-ergonomic furniture has led to an explosion of people with chronic back pain. As a chiropractor, you can help people in extreme pain, and you’ll save them from becoming addicted to pain meds, too.
You don’t need an easygoing personality for this job, but you need strong hands and a good observational capacity.
Salary: RM 132,000/year
You’ve probably read the news about MissRose Gaming, a Malaysian housewife who honed her gaming abilities on PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. She earns as much as RM 18,000/ month, and so can you.
All you have to do is be really good at computer games, contrary to what your parents told you when you were young. However, you also need good tools (e.g. good connection, top video cam, sound, etc.) and a charismatic personality.
Plenty of good players out there go by unnoticed, so you need charisma and a good backstory apart from gaming skills. You know, it’s that je-ne-sais-quoi factor that makes you go viral.
Secondly, you’ll need to build your network, participate in conferences, and choose your sponsorship deals carefully.
Remember you need to have some consumer insight and make a plan to build your audience. Then, you’ll have to invest time and money to follow that plan. After you’ve made a name for yourself, you can expect the big money to come in.
Salary: RM 216,000/ year
Becoming a surgeon involves a lot of work and passion for study. You need to sacrifice your free time learning new techniques and researching new studies, but it will all be worth it in the end.
Surgeons don’t have to be friendly, but rather calculated, analytical, and good at taking calculated risks. The downside is that you may have no personal life after you become a surgeon because you’ll always be either at work or researching better ways to do your work.
The good part is that being a surgeon is very challenging and it gives you an immense sense of satisfaction.
However, if you’re worried about the patients you might lose, being a surgeon may not be the job for you.
Salary: RM 200,000/ year