Industry reports indicate inadequate numbers of qualified staff are entering the IT job market.
Vietnam seems likely to face a serious shortage of IT talent in the years to come. The latest report from online recruitment company VietnamWorks, released on November 27, stated that current growth in IT human resources will result in a shortfall of some 500,000 IT professionals in the country by 2020.
“Although this is a big challenge it is also an opportunity for academic institutions, the HR industry, and industry professionals to integrate more and help provide solutions on bringing more qualified IT professionals into the market,” said Mr. Paul Espinas, VietnamWorks’ Director of Marketing.
According to the company’s analyses, over the last three years the number of IT jobs has increased 47 per cent every year on average. Supply, though, has only been 8 per cent.
Future for IT Job Market in Vietnam
The number of IT companies has increased by 69 per cent compared to 2012. Software companies have increased 124 per cent in number over the course of the last four years, primarily in outsourcing. According to the Tholons Top 100 Outsourcing Destinations report, Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi were among the Top 20 best destinations.
TechLooper’s data provides insights into the specific IT skills currently in demand. .NET, C/C++, Java, PHP and Web developers saw the highest growth in the market last year. Web and Java are reported to be the two most in-demand IT positions in Vietnam.
Trends in IT Job Market in Vietnam
Based on market observations and report numbers, there are four points that need to be improved in order to successfully grow Vietnam’s IT market, according to Mr. Espinas.
Firstly, language skills among IT professionals must be improved. Outsourcing services require good communication skills in foreign languages such as English and Japanese. “As we become more and more integrated with the international market through the ASEAN Economic Community and the TPP, foreign language skills will be required for all professionals, not just in IT but also in other industries,” he stressed.
Secondly, IT professionals in Vietnam need to improve their soft skills. This can be observed across all industries, not just in IT. In IT, high-level positions, like Project Manager, require far more skills than just coding and quality testing. Communications, leadership, and time management, etc., are the skills IT people need to become a high-caliber professional.
Thirdly, technology updates should be integrated into the academic curricula nationwide. A recent survey by VietnamWorks showed that Vietnam’s tech community is curious about new concepts like Big Data, Mobile Programming, Disruptive Technology, and Open Source. “All of these concepts have become popular all over the world, but in Vietnam school curriculums rarely touch on these modern IT subjects,” Mr. Espinas said.
Lastly, a proper training plan is needed for IT professionals. According to VietnamWorks’ latest data, 75 per cent of IT professionals prefer employers who offer training opportunities while only 14 per cent of employers provide training. By providing training courses IT employers can contribute to building a better IT talent pool for the market, as well as improve employee engagement and retention.