SINGAPORE - Landing that dream job may be harder these days as more talent around the world flock to Asia in search of better opportunities.
As the job market becomes more competitive, it is increasingly critical that job seekers find ways to develop an edge over others and enhance their employability.
One thing they should do is to develop "T-shaped" capabilities, or strong interdisciplinary skills - something which employers today are intensively seeking, according to human-resource experts.
"T-shaped" professionals are those who have in-depth knowledge of a specific area.
They continue to refine that knowledge with a broad understanding of related disciplines within the same spectrum.
"Businesses today need to react faster than ever to market opportunities, so employees who are acutely aware of how the different units work together are more highly valued," said Mr Josh Goh, assistant director of corporate services at staffing and HR consultancy The GMP Group.
"Employees can no longer afford to be strong in only a specific discipline or stay fixated on their own job scope. They need to think strategically and hold a long-term perspective," Mr Goh added.
For example, firms that approach GMP to recruit engineers now require candidates to be eloquent and be able to handle sales pitches and presentations.
Broad-based skills, such as the ability to develop strong relationships with key business stakeholders, negotiate successful outcomes, manage projects as well as implement innovation and change in the organisation, are highly prized by employers, said the experts.
Ms Helen Lim, a senior partner at Capelle Consulting, pointed out that cultivating interdisciplinary skills would also enable one to cross over more easily to other jobs and even across industry sectors.
"In the long term, individuals with 'T-shaped' abilities would be confident enough to embrace change and achieve higher job satisfaction," she said.
"They are also likely to see faster career progression, since they are able to take on more responsibilities and contribute more to the company."
Given the competitive business environment today, companies themselves are also actively stepping up on the training and development of employees.
For example, Swiss bank UBS in Singapore organises an annual 18-month graduate training programme, aimed at equipping its staff with fundamental knowledge about the bank's various businesses, as well as to enhance collaboration across the bank's various units.