Jobs In Malay: 13 Helpful Workplace Expressions

Are you wondering what is the most common translation for pekerjaan or jobs in Malay language? Get to know more about this in this exclusive Ling App guide today. After all, this is one of the most common topics discussed by foreigners when speaking with the locals. If you are ready to impress Malay speakers with your skills, then this post is perfect for you!

Malaysia is just one of many countries that were heavily affected by the recent pandemic. Currently, Malaysians are slowly rising back up after going through months of lockdowns and unemployment, hence, youngsters are actively preparing their resumes and for job interviews. In some cases, the Malay language borrowed the English names for jobs. However, for most traditional occupations, we have Malay words for them- Which is what we will be looking into today. In this post, let’s increase our vocabulary bank by learning some of the names of common jobs in Malay.


How To Say Jobs In Malay

The noun ‘job’ or ‘jobs’ in Malay is ‘pekerjaan’ – an economic role for which a person is paid.

The word ‘pekerjaan‘ was derived from the root word ‘kerja‘, which means a work or a task that has an objective to be completed. ‘Kerja’ is also synonymous to ‘tugas‘.

Another word that comes from the same root word is ‘pekerja’, The translations for it are ’employee’ and ‘worker’. To emphasize the plurality, you can double it into two words- ‘pekerja-pekerja‘ or add the word ‘para‘ in front of the noun. ‘Para‘ can also mean ‘fellow‘: para pekerja = fellow employees.

Here are some examples to use these words in sentences and their translations:

He left for work.Dia pergi ke kerja.
What are you working as?Apakah Pekerjaan kamu?
He is my employee.Dia pekerja saya.
Have you completed that task/work?Adakah kamu sudah siap tugas/ kerja itu?

How To Identify Jobs In Malay

How To Identify Jobs In Malay

Before we learn all the words of the Malay jobs, we need to be able to recognize if the word is actually an occupation noun. I will share with you some formulas, but you have to keep in mind, there are always exceptions in languages.

Pe(N) Prefix

Firstly, by using the pe(N) prefix before the root words. This prefix indicates the word is a noun. The prefix also includes pe-, pem-, pen-, peng– or peny-. Some examples are:

  • Pelukis (painter or illustrator): from the root word ‘lukis‘ (draw).
  • Pelakon (actor or actress): from the root word ‘lakon‘ (act).
  • Penterjemah (translator): form the root word ‘terjemah‘ (translate or translations)

Juru- Prefix

In the Malay language, the prefix juru- before the root word indicates the area of specialty and expertise.

  • Jurukamera which translates to ‘cameraman’, from the word ‘kamera‘ (camera)
  • Juruwang is a cashier, from the root word ‘wang‘ which means ‘money’.

By Adding ‘Tukang

Tukang‘ can be translated to crafstman. So you can find the word in front of a noun- mostly something that can be crafted.

  • Tukang kayu – carpenter; ‘kayu‘ means ‘wood’.
  • Tukang besi – blacksmith; ‘besi‘ can be translated to ‘iron’.
  • Tukang paip – plumber; ‘paip‘ is literally ‘pipes’.

Borrowed Words

Some of these names of Malay jobs are actually recognizable because words are borrowed words from English or have the same etymology:

  • Doktor = Doctor
  • Artis = Artist
  • Polis = Police
  • Cef = Chef

However, there are some that do not fall to the above categories, for example:

  • Tentera – soldier
  • Cikgu / guru – teacher
  • Wartawan – journalist

List Of Other Jobs In Malay Language

Air forceTentera Udara
BakerTukang buat roti
BankerPegawai Bank
BarberTukang Gunting
BlacksmithTukang besi
BusinessmanAhli perniagaan
ButcherTukang potong daging
Cab driverPemandu teksi
CarpenterTukang Kayu
ClockworkerTukang jam
CobblerTukang Kasut
CookTukang Masak
DriverPemandu teksi
FiremenAhli Bomba
Football playerPemain Bola Sepak
GardenerTukang Kebun
GoldsmithTukang Emas
LocksmithTukang Kunci
MaidPembantu rumah
NavyTentera laut
PlumberTukang paip
Reporter / journalistWartawan
Security guardPengawal keselamatan
SoldierTentera Darat
TailorTukang jahit
TeacherGuru / Cikgu
Team leaderKetua Pasukan
Telephone operatorOperator telefon
Television hostPenyampai Televisyen
Traffic policePolis trafik
Travel agentEjen Pelangcongan

Introducing Your Occupation

If you want to introduce your occupation to someone new, you can say,

“Saya seorang ____”

The phrase above can be translated to “I am a ____”. You can easily insert any job words in the blank space. This is the easiest modus for you to follow. eg:

Saya seorang doktor.

I am a doctor.

If you want to learn more about introducing yourself in the Malay language, you can search here.

Common Workplace Expressions In Malay

Here are some sentences or common daily phrases that you might find handy in a working environment once you settled for a job in Malaysia, who knows, you might just end up in Malaysia!

Are you looking for a job?Adakah kamu mencari pekerjaan?
I’m looking for a jobSaya sedang mencari pekerjaan baru,.
What is the job description?Apakah keterangan untuk perkerjaan ini?
Is there any job vacancy here?Adakah terdapat jawatan kosong di sini?
I’m a dancer.Saya seorang penari.
What do you call a driver in French?Apakah pemandu dalam bahasa Perancis?
I can speak three languages.Saya boleh bertutur/bercakap dalam tiga bahasa
My mother is a teacher.Ibu saya seorang guru.
He is a new employee.Dia adalah pekerja baru.
She is our new employer.Dia adalah majikan baru kami.
You have to complete this job today.Anda mesti menyelesaikan pekerjaan ini hari ini.
Have you completed that job I gave you yesterday?Adakah anda telah menyelesaikan pekerjaan yang saya berikan semalam?
You need to have 3 years experience for this job.Anda perlu mempunyai pengalaman selama 3 tahun untuk pekerjaan ini.

Applying Jobs In Malaysia?

If you are a non-Malaysian and you wish to search for a job in Malaysia, here are some you may be interested in. If you are bilingual, you should really look into any kind of translating job. people who do any kind of translations are sought after in many countries, so don’t forget to sharpen your language skills through Ling App!

If you are not interested in translations, another option is to apply for teaching jobs and teach TESL or TEFL to Malaysian students. Other than languages, you can also apply for IT jobs, tourism jobs, marketing jobs, and many more. you just need to know where to look for the perfect job.

In other words, if you want to get a job in Malaysia, learning Malay will definitely be beneficial for you. That is why you need to download Ling App right now and immerse yourself in the beauty of learning a new language- the better way. Ling App offers many functions that allow you to learn a new language at your own pace. So don’t miss out on this!

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