Digital Leaders Wanted in Vietnam

Vietnam is basking in the economic sunshine resulting from the tariff war between China and the U.S. But there is one problem: there is a lack of business leaders or CEOs who can take advantage.

The Michael Page Vietnam Employment Outlook 2019 showed a significant upward trend in hiring within the e-commerce, digital, technology and fintech spaces.

"Vietnam's industrial, digital and technology sectors are booming. System app developers, chief technology officers as well as big data engineers, are especially in demand as companies look to grow their digital capabilities. Vietnamese professionals in digital and technology, e-commerce and fintech, are not always observed to have the right capabilities yet but companies are willing to invest in grooming local talent. It is encouraging to see these efforts in nurturing a home-grown Vietnamese workforce," said Tamara Boonstra, director at Michael Page Vietnam.

Vietnamese talent in digital and technology are limited by stiff competition from companies seeking similar top professionals. The report indicated a 20%-increase in the number of digital and e-commerce jobs posted in Vietnam in the last 12 months. Successful job movers can expect a premium 20 to 25% salary hike.

"In order to fill these open roles, some companies have expanded their candidate search to Southeast Asia, China, the U.S. and Europe or attracting experienced Vietnamese professionals living abroad who are looking to return home. Companies seek talent with a strong business acumen, skilled in stakeholder management who can push back and are fluent in English, Vietnamese returnees often have the global mindset and experience to fulfill these requirements," Tamara said.

Manufacturing remains a massive industry as more factories move into Vietnam. This large amount of FDI entering the country is driving the demand for quality talent even further. Demands to increase productivity has also resulted in the need for automation within these new premises. Therefore, professionals skilled in manufacturing management and quality and process improvement will see increased opportunities.

“Vietnam's employers need to be aware that start-ups are quickly becoming a popular employer option due to their attractive culture and engaging environment. To be an employer of choice, companies in Vietnam need to offer industry-standard salaries and benefits. Apart from monetary benefits, companies need to show professionals the long-term career progression opportunities available,” said Tamara.