What's New : CLAP-TECH Pathway Online Survey Reveals Latest Trends in Talent Demand in Information and Communications Technology and Creative Media Industries in Hong Kong




CLAP-TECH Pathway Online Survey Reveals Latest Trends in Talent Demand in Information and Communications Technology and Creative Media Industries in Hong Kong

Funded by The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, the Jockey Club Multiple Pathways Initiative – CLAP-TECH Pathway (CLAP-TECH) is Hong Kong’s first through-train vocational and professional education and training (VPET) pathway in mainstream senior secondary and post-secondary education. Launched in 2020, CLAP-TECH a tripartite partnership among Hong Kong Baptist University, industry partners, and secondary schools. The programme equips students with technical and soft skills for the future workforce by incorporating career and life development in the curriculum. It currently consists of two Applied Learning Courses (i.e. Tech Basics and Multimedia Storytelling) and a Higher Diploma in Data Science. Since its establishment, over 30 industry partners have been involved in the programme, guiding and inspiring over 800 students from more than 70 secondary schools.

CLAP-TECH commissioned a market research company to conduct an online survey in October this year, interviewing a total of 500 local employers who had been involved in the recruitment process in the Information and Communications Technology and/ or creative media industries in the past 12 months. Over half of the respondents frequently hire employees (every few months or multiple times per month), and have final decision-making authority or influence in the recruitment process. This survey aimed to delve into the talent demands of the two industries and their views on the quality and abilities of higher diploma and university degree graduates, providing a reference for students and industries in the academic and career planning landscape.

On 23 November 2023 (Thursday), CLAP-TECH has released its latest survey analysing talent demand in the ICT and creative media industries in Hong Kong. The survey examined various aspects, such as starting salaries, skill requirements, overall talent supply, and job vacancies available for higher diploma and university degree fresh graduates. It provides insights into the latest local recruitment trends.

Employers agree that higher diploma and university degree fresh graduates have comparable abilities, as shown in their similar starting salaries

According to the survey, nearly two-thirds of higher diploma fresh graduates and more than 70% of university degree fresh graduates receive a starting salary of HKD 17,000 to HKD 23,000 when they enter the ICT industry; employers from the creative media industry offered the same starting salary range (i.e. HKD 17,000 – HKD 23,000) to higher diploma fresh graduates and university degree fresh graduates.

Responded employers generally believed that higher diploma and university degree fresh graduates possess comparable work attitudes, technical expertise and demonstrated soft skills.

Andrew Ho, Director of CLAP-TECH Centre said, “According to the survey results, over 80% of responded employers still consider university qualifications as a key factor in hiring decisions. This highlights the importance of enhancing the recognition of vocational and professional education and training (VPET), including the elevation of vocational talent education to a university level. This is a key area of improvement that was similarly emphasised in this year’s Policy Address, which would provide every promising young person with the opportunity to fully showcase their talent and potential for success.”

Employers view internship or practical experience as equally important to technical expertise

The survey also found that ICT employers placed almost equal importance on technical expertise and relevant internship or practical experience when hiring fresh graduates. However, they also believed that most job applicants are lacking in both of these areas. Similarly, employers in the creative media industry valued industry-related internship or practical experience and technical expertise for entry level applicants, also noting a demonstrated lack of internship or practical experience among job seekers.

Andrew Ho, Director of CLAP-TECH Centre said, “Under CLAP-TECH’s pioneering tripartite partnership model, we work closely with industry partners to ensure that our curriculum design meets industry needs. Our Higher Diploma in Data Science programme focuses on the latest developments in the information technology industry, including artificial intelligence, data analytics, and cybersecurity, preparing students for the most in-demand positions in the market. We are also very grateful for our industry partners who provide internship opportunities for students and offer professional career development guidance through mentorship programmes. This allows CLAP-TECH students to accumulate internship and practical experience, helping them stand out in the employment process.

“CLAP-TECH’s ‘3 + 2’ years VPET pathway offers Applied Learning courses for high school students to explore their interests during the three-year senior secondary HKDSE curriculum, followed by a two-year higher diploma programme. CLAP-TECH aspires to create a pathway with multiple entry and exit points for students. By incorporating elements of career and life development, CLAP-TECH nurtures students’ industry-specific hard and soft skills, including ‘new collar’ skills.”