The Most Underpaid Jobs In Malaysia
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Would you say you are being underpaid at your job? Most of us will answer the affirmative – especially after those long, rough hours at work. While some of you are merely feeling the injustice occasionally, more are actually being underpaid – much less than the average salary – despite the value they are putting into their work.

Let’s have a look at some of the jobs that are being paid less than what they’re worth, given their heavy responsibilities and complex nature of their duties:

The Most Underpaid Jobs In Malaysia

Customer Service Executives

Salary starts from: RM1,500

Despite working long (and most of the time odd hours) shifts and having to bear customer’s complaints on every imaginable issue all day long, customer service executives are among the lowest paying jobs in Malaysia. This holds true especially for those who are without tertiary level certifications, although they are doing the same amount of work as the ones with better qualifications.

Many would scoff at the straightforward nature of the job, but they underestimate the amount of stress that these executives would have to go through on a daily basis – what with handling irate and frustrated customers.

Day Care Assistants

Salary starts from: RM900

The majority of working parents send their children to day care centres with the full expectation that their little ones will be well looked after. Depending on the area, some day care centres charge a hefty monthly fee per child, but little do we know that the assistants who are supervising the children are – in most cases – grossly underpaid.

Some of the assistants earn as little as RM900 a month, depending on their qualification as well as the area where the day care centre is located in. The low salary doesn’t justify the work they put into taking care of each child – feeding, changing their diapers, bathing, and ensuring the children’s safety while in the compounds of the day care centre. What’s more, each assistant is usually responsible for as many as 10 children at any given time, making their job much more stressful that it looks.

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Restaurant And Fast Food Servers

Salary starts from: RM1,100

We all know how stressful it is to work as a restaurant server, but few truly appreciate the hard work these people are putting into delivering foods to our table. It’s an exhausting job, having to carry – and sometimes help prepare – food to customers throughout their long shifts.

Those in this profession often get little rest, and more often than not have to deal with rude customers – especially if their orders are late or unsatisfactory. While some earn a basic salary along with a shift or overtime allowance, some only earn an hourly salary which when accumulated is even lower than those who earn a fixed income.

This situation holds true to fast food servers as well. While many major chain fast food restaurants are offering more perks to their workers, many still suffer from the depression that comes with the job, what with the low pay and physical exertion. You might want to think twice before getting angry at your server if your food arrives a little late the next time – who knows how long they’ve been running around serving other hungry customers that same day?

Administrative Assistants

Salary starts from: RM1,200

Administrative assistants are often burdened with a tonne of tasks each day, and these are the people who have to come early to open the office and stay late to close the office (if necessary). They are seldom appreciated by their peers in the office, despite providing various administrative support to the company.

Their daily tasks are taxing and require minute detail, such as preparing various paperwork, filing important documents, and oversee the office’s needs and supplies for the tens or hundreds of the company’s staffs.

Maintenance Workers And Technicians

Read also: Other Perks To Look For In A Job Beyond Salary

Salary starts from: RM1,500

When a pipe bursts at your home or the office, who would you call first? Maintenance workers and technicians often have to work odd hours, and their jobs are usually dangerous and tiring. Their responsibilities include fixing broken things, servicing electrical appliances (such as your air-conditioner or water heater) or even cleaning the mess that you may have made earlier in the day.
They are paid very little for the amount and value of work they do, and few appreciate them – unless something needs to be fixed.

Graphic Designers

Salary starts from: RM1,500

Graphic designers are the ones who you should thank every time you come across a beautiful magazine cover or an interesting advertisement. But for the long hours they put into their designs, few are truly appreciated and paid well.

The problem lies in the supply and demand, there are too many bright-eyed fresh grads who are eager to start working and share their creativity to the world. This results in a highly competitive industry, as large companies prefer graphic designers with experience and strong talent – which leaves those with lesser experience (or none at all) no choice but to accept a job offer that pays a ridiculously low salary. The upside of being a graphic designer is that they can also make money on the side as freelancers, and with enough experience and portfolio, they can earn a better salary in no time.


Salary starts from: RM1,000

Copywriters (and writers in general) are often underpaid and underestimated. ‘Anyone can write’ is a phrase that is commonly thrown around, even though this is far from the truth.

Any writer who hears this is sure to grit their teeth, because coming up with a quality and engaging piece is anything but easy. It takes long hours of research, brainstorms, and countless editing to produce a good (and approved) read. Most writers work irregular hours, and generally in isolation as many of these creative people need their space and quiet time to think. It’s a small wonder that most writers suffer from depression.

However, experienced and resourceful copywriters are also capable of raking in the big income. Copywriters and content writers who specialise in the digital and technical industry are especially sought after by many headhunters, as these areas require specific expertise that not all writers can provide.
If you feel like you’re also underpaid, you can either consider changing your profession or start a part-time job that won’t interfere with your day job. Do you think your job is underpaid? Let us know in the comment section below!

The stated salaries are on a monthly basis, and sourced from selected jobs advertised on


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