Ho Chi Minh City, 29 July 2020 —- Navigos Group, the leading company in Vietnam’s recruitment industry, operator of the biggest job portal VietnamWorks and an executive search firm Navigos Search, has issued the report on recruitment demands for senior management level in Vietnam through Navigos Search’s clients’ hiring needs in Q2/2020

There is a disparity in recovery between Consumer Services and Business Services sector

The new normal state has stimulated consumer spending needs, the state of international trade has not shown any sign of re-establishment yet, which has led to the disparity in hiring needs between the Consumer Services and Business Services sectors. According to the statistics of Navigos Search in Q2/2020, the industries that have recovered and are on the way of recovery (with a decrease compared to the previous quarter but at a low rate) are mostly in the Consumer Services industry. On the contrary, the Business Services segment has not shown any sign of recovery, this group has the sharpest decline in recruitment demand compared to Q1/2020.

Accordingly, the industry that showed the most recognizable recovery, with positive growth, was Tourism/Restaurant with the hiring demand increased by 11% compared to Q1. The following three sectors showed signs of recovery, although there was a small decrease compared to Q1 that fluctuating around 10%, respectively: Finance/Banking; Health Care and Life Sciences; Real estate.

On the other hand, the three industries with the largest reduction in recruitment demand compared to Q1/2020 were: Transportation, by 58%; Media & Advertising, by 58%; Sales & Marketing (B2B) for Manufacturing Companies, by 38%.

Garment/Textile industry is gradually recovering, leading to an increase in the demand for recruiting managerial positions

In Q2/2020, the demand for recruiting middle and managerial positions in the Garment/Textile industry increased slightly, mostly comes from foreign-invested factories from South Korea and the US. Also, in Q2, factories that processing orders for supermarkets as well as low-priced clothes have restored production to normal status. This is because factories begin to receive orders, most notably are outsourcing factories for leading US retailers.

The key Manufacturing sectors have many investment advantages, opening up many job opportunities

As observed by Navigos Search, there will be many potentials for the Vietnam labor market due to the wave of investment in the Manufacturing key industry since the EVFTA trade agreement was successfully approved and the countries reopened the border. Accordingly, thanks to many preferential policies, the Garment and Footwear industry in Vietnam will become an ideal investment destination for foreign businesses from Asia, Europe, and America. Besides, EVFTA is also a driving force for stronger export in the Agriculture industry.

Regard to the Electronics industry, the Q2/2020 noted several businesses that have restarted their plans to relocate new factory projects from Asia to Vietnam, resulting in a slight increase in recruitment demand in this sector. Companies have been planning to invest and deploy new projects in the electronics and automobile industry in industrial cities such as Ha Nam, Hai Phong, and Hai Duong. The supporting industry promises to thrive, as it has been focused on attracting more FDI capital from European countries and the region.

The recruitment demand for the Energy sector is on the rise as a result of many advantages

In Q2/2020, Navigos Search recorded a strong increase in recruitment demand in the wind and solar power. The reason is the strong increase in demand for energy in general and electricity in particular as well as the impact of the Government’s renewable energy planning and development strategy. It is expected that recruitment demand will continue to increase sharply in Q3 and Q4, focusing mainly in the central region (Ninh Thuan, Tra Vinh, etc.).

Besides, the approved EVFTA trade agreement has raised the potentials of Vietnam and attracted the attention of investors from the US and Europe in the field of Energy. Many big projects have been in the research and development stage, some other projects are looking for solutions to overcome difficulties and promise to grow quickly in the near future.

High-level recruiting consulting services are currently the most effective recruitment channel for Energy businesses by meeting the needs of human resources in a short time and are able to ensure the project progress according to the Government’s regulations.

Regarding the recruitment requirements, because the projects have foreign factors, the employer requires quite a lot of professional skills, and good English skills, especially for the management position.

Vietnam’s energy sector attracts Vietnamese repatriate and foreign experts

Navigos Search observes the tendency of many foreign experts in the Energy sector to actively approach HR consulting services and look for opportunities to work in Vietnam. Additionally, Vietnamese experts and engineers working on foreign projects also expressed their desire to return to Vietnam. Although the income may be lower, many experts have not continued to extend their contracts to work abroad and are ready to take on job opportunities at home country.

Due to the rapidly increasing demand for recruitment of personnel in the country, there is a shortage of personnel for management positions, especially candidates with experience working and implementing projects with foreign factors. Therefore, the Energy sector promises to open many job opportunities for Vietnamese experts who want to repatriate and foreign experts who want to work in Vietnam.

Japanese businesses are difficult to maintain the human resource but still choose Vietnam as “the promised land”

In the second quarter, Navigos Search noted that Japanese companies newly established in Vietnam could not go into production yet due to the impact of COVID-19. In particular, many senior Japanese experts who hold key positions in the factory have not been able to come to Vietnam, leading to the delayed recruitment decisions for other positions. In the context of difficult business, some companies are now adopting policies to reduce working hours, reduce wages, or make adjustments to their human resources. Some other companies, due to the difficulties of the parent company in Japan, have to temporarily close the factory for a while, and is currently unknown when their business operations will be restarted again. Hence, very few Japanese companies have plans to expand but only focus on maintaining the personnel structure and only recruiting replacements at the time.

However, it is expected that in Q4, there will be a significant change in investment shift, which will greatly affect the recruitment needs of some businesses. Especially, from the second half of the year, there will be many Japanese investors moving factories from China to Vietnam. It is expected that new investors will focus on the area of Thang Long 3 Industrial Park – Vinh Phuc Province and Dong Van 3 Industrial Park – Ha Nam Province.

The bank increased the recruitment of the Sales department to serve the need of “cross-selling” the insurance products

The Banking industry, in general, is still in the process of reviewing operating costs according to the Governor’s announcement, leading to the fact that recruitment demand in the industry is still slowing down and there has been no sign of strong increase yet, especially for recruiting senior candidates.

However, regards to the hiring need for staff and experienced levels in Banks in Q2/2020, there has been a trend of recruiting mass Sales positions to promote cross-sales of life insurance products.

Affected indirectly from the region, the FMCG industry has yet to recover

The recruitment demand for FMCG in Quarter 2 showed signs of growth but was still about 40% lower than the same period last year. The reason is that companies in the FMCG industry in Vietnam are mostly foreign and multinational companies, so they are indirectly influenced by the parent company and the business situation in other markets. Therefore, enterprises are still limited in recruitment budgets and have no plans to recruit new positions, only prioritizing recruiting strategic positions that are urgent. For Vietnamese companies that currently have an export plan, recruitment is currently halting.

Difficulty in recruitment, personnel restructuring, and benefits adjustment in the Retail industry

For the Retail sector, consumption slowed down and the number of customers dropped sharply in Q2 leading to inventory (especially in fashion, cosmetics, and F&B). Since then, business plans and revenue are affected so businesses are forced to cut costs to the maximum (including recruitment costs), and many businesses had to restructure the organization. Many businesses had to lay off staff, or require current employees to take on more responsibility of other positions instead of recruiting new people to be in charge.

Both employers and candidates face certain challenges in recruitment at this stage. Accordingly, for employers, the difficult situation of the business forces them to adjust salaries and reduce benefits for mid-level manager positions, limit the ability to attract potential and high-quality talents. For candidates, job opportunities in the industry are also very limited at this time, the interviewing and the selection process are also rigidly conducted by the employer, due to the expectation of recruiting quality candidate at the most optimal budget.

The Education industry has “warmed up” gradually and are in-demand for quality and strategic thinking candidates

As observed by Navigos Search, the market has warmed up compared to the period from March to May this year, the most noticeable change can be seen through the recruitment demand in new projects in the Education segment (such as establishing new international schools system or bilingual schools in the mid-range and above segment). There are new projects that are largely invested by foreign investors, this trend partly comes from the potential of Vietnam’s market in the long term and the understanding of the strong investment in education for children of Vietnamese families.

Although the recruitment demand is still stable, there is a high possibility that the competition will increase for candidates when looking for a job in the Education field, because businesses start to have more strict criteria. Accordingly, because of the impact of the pandemic, employers still prioritize finding quality talent with a “reasonable salary”, and expect them to have strategic thinking to come up with appropriate plans to help businesses grow in the “New Normal” state.