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‘Come Home Phở Good’ - efforts to bring overseas Vietnamese talents back home

Wednesday, October 31, 2018, 19:00 GMT+7
‘Come Home Phở Good’ - efforts to bring overseas Vietnamese talents back home
As hiring demand increases, the resource for specialist and highly-skilled professionals becomes scarce.

In the age of robust economic growth and dynamic global integration, for high-profile industries such as artificial intelligence, technology, finance or education, attracting overseas talents to return home to work is the top priority for Vietnam as well as other countries in the region.

However, it remains a big challenge for companies to approach and convince these talents to come home.

In a survey conducted by Robert Walters with more than 5,000 HR professionals, managers and candidates working in Asian and Western companies in China and Southeast Asia, including Vietnam, 70 percent of Asian companies shared that they are planning to expand globally in the next three years.

Forty-four percent of these companies wish to increase their international talents headcount in the next 12 months. As hiring demand continues to rise, the resource for specialist and highly-skilled professionals becomes scarce, which poses a challenge for both multinational corporations and domestic firms intending to expand globally.

As hiring foreign employees becomes increasingly difficult for various reasons, companies are now seeking local employees who currently reside and work abroad.

Robert Walters – a global specialist professional recruitment consultancy – equipped with global networks and deep local insights, has launched “Come Home Phở Good," a campaign targeting overseas professional Vietnamese to return home to work.

After two years since the launch, “Come Home Phở Good” has reached out to more than 5,000 overseas Vietnamese talents, among which 1,200 shared their wish to return home to work.

Mr. Adrien Bizouard, Country Manager of Robert Walters Vietnam, shared: “Come Home Phở Good was launched in May 2016. At the time, Vietnam was considered a fast-growing economy. More and more foreign companies invested into Vietnam, generating a trend in domestic businesses desiring to expand globally. To do this, they would need the human capital that know the local market and have international exposure. However, it would be challenging and time-consuming for the employers to approach the candidates by themselves. Our campaign “Come Home Phở Good” has proved to be effective in fulfilling this urgent demand of employers and successfully recruited highly-skilled Vietnamese professionals from overseas to return home to work.”

Adrien Bizouard, Country Manager of Robert Walters Vietnam
Adrien Bizouard, Country Manager of Robert Walters Vietnam

One might challenge, why not hire candidates who currently reside in Vietnam? Of course, there are opportunities for local candidates, but the pool of skilled and experienced talents are very limited as Vietnam is still a developing country, in which the quality of education and training are not on a par with other developed countries, especially when it comes to high-profile industries like IT, Finance, etc.

The number of Vietnamese students studying abroad is still increasing, yet the statistics show only a small proportion of them choose to return home to work, causing a social phenomenon better known as “brain drain - the flight of human capital” a few years ago.

“The differences between an oversea candidate and a local candidate actually include many factors," said Andrew Humphreys, Associate Director of Supply Chain & Engineering, Sales & Marketing Industrial of Robert Walters.

“It is relatively easy to find an overseas candidate who has the skills and fluency in English. They are also more easily adapted to high-pressure working environments and can work independently. They are more open to changes and care about the development of their companies. Furthermore, they can connect better with their employers. In general, it is a challenge to find a local Vietnamese talent who possesses all of these qualities.”

Andrew Humphreys, Associate Director of Supply Chain & Engineering, Sales & Marketing Industrial of Robert Walters
Andrew Humphreys, Associate Director of Supply Chain & Engineering, Sales & Marketing Industrial of Robert Walters

He continued: “In my experience, Vietnamese people who have worked abroad in multinational companies usually will have the competitive skills as previously mentioned. Those skills are even more needed in the industries like engineering, where work usually involves manufacturing plants, production lines, etc., in which there is a real need for specialists with high-level managerial skills to oversee the whole process of production and manufacturing.”

What do overseas Vietnamese candidates think about returning to Vietnam to work? As informed by Robert Walters recruiting consultants, one of their major concerns is whether the working environment in the country is professional enough.

The next concern is the salary, as in foreign countries, they usually have much better salary and benefit packages. Likewise, some candidates think that they would have opportunities to get promoted, contribute to the growth and development of the companies and the country if they return home.

On the other hand, to overseas candidates who want to return home, finding a suitable job is a real challenge.

Tra Tran, International Candidate Manager of Robert Walters Vietnam, shared that as someone who studied and worked in the U.S. for many years, she could only look for opportunities in Vietnam through the usual job posting sites, but could not find anything that suited her interests and career goals.

Tra said: “People who have been abroad for a long time will not have the right insight into Vietnam's job market and a rich social network. This might limit them from finding a suitable job, which is time-consuming and can cause anxiety. Recruiting companies that have experts who understand the market like Robert Walters will help people like myself to approach and find jobs in more efficient and specific manners. Recruitment through specialist firms like Robert Walters will be very different from the usual job ads posted online which only include general job description.” 

“Robert Walters will help candidates update information about the job market in more detail, understand clearly the position and specific responsibility they need to undertake in Vietnam," Tra said.

Tra Tran, International Candidate Manager of Robert Walters Vietnam
Tra Tran, International Candidate Manager of Robert Walters Vietnam

Understanding the local market and being trend-savvy are the key factors that help Robert Walters succeed in Vietnam as the only recruiting company that makes the efforts to bring overseas Vietnamese talents home to work.

The campaign “Come Home Phở Good” has been launched in other Southeast Asian countries like Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines with similar names.

Come Home Phở Good has opened doors for many overseas talents to see the opportunities that the country has for them.

To get more insights and updates about recruitment trends and the job market in Vietnam, please contact Tra Tran via tra.tran@robertwalters.com.vn.

Tap Luong

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