Vietnam’s labour market is in desperate need of high-qualified and skilled workers, experts have said.
Students of Hanoi's Mechanical and Electric College in a robot control class.
The local labour market has long faced a paradox of many trained labourers being unable to find suitable jobs while businesses dealt with a labour shortage, as graduates often had to be retrained to be competent.
Vietnam is also one of the countries most heavily influenced by the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0), with many jobs set to become obsolete and many other new ones to appear.
Facing the trend of automation, Vietnamese workers must be trained to meet job requirements in this new situation.
According to Tran Tuan Anh, former vice director of HCM City’s Human Resource Forecast and Labour Market Information Centre, businesses' demand for workers of all types would increase by 14.5 per cent by 2025.
The demand for average-skilled jobs would generally rise at the fastest rate of about 28 per cent while skilled workers would be at 13 per cent, Tuan Anh told online newspaper baotintuc.vn.
The labour market in HCM City was always busy, he said.
“Only in the first quarter this year, businesses in HCM City still needed 65,430 employees although it was a time of difficulties for all economic sectors due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Tuan Anh said.
In the second quarter, businesses would need about 47,000 workers in commerce, information technology, administration, health care, consulting service and customer care, he said.
The demand for trained labourers accounted for 81 per cent of the total.
According to human resource experts, skilled and high-qualified human resources have not yet met labour market demand.
Many graduates were not well equipped with expertise, soft skills and foreign languages so they could not find jobs.
“In order to overcome the situation, training co-operation among education institutions and businesses should be enhanced to supply high-qualified human resource meeting businesses’ requirement as well as increase the prestige of educational institutions,” said Nguyen Hoan Hao, a lecture of HCM City’s Pedagogical University.
Businesses would decide how many qualified and capable employees they need every year while schools would be responsible for training students to the firms' requirements, said Hao.
Nguyen Hong Quang, vice president of C.T Group, said that close relations between schools and businesses via training courses and internship programmes would help employers find suitable employees.
HCM City’s University of Economics has long had ties with businesses via workshops for evaluating students’ suitability for businesses’ needs, seminars on improving training courses, career festivals, and internship programmes.
Since 2017, the percentage of newly-graduated students from the university who found jobs immediately after their studies has been 93.4 per cent.
“After graduating, the students often looked for jobs from business recruitment ads, career fairs or job promotion centres,” said Dr Dinh Cong Khai, a lecturer of HCM City’s Economics University.
“Knowledge and skills are important requirements to recruiters,” said Khai.
“Lack of soft skills such as communication, time management and teamwork were reasons that made graduates fail to find jobs,” he said.
Cao Van Duong, an employee of KPMG Ltd Co Vietnam, said to meet the demands of the labour market, graduates must be strong in their expertise.
“Technology could change rapidly but basic knowledge of a professional is a solid foundation for employees to quickly grasp new knowledge in their working environment,” Duong said.
Additionally, recruiters now focused on soft skills such as communication skills, time management, teamwork, crisis management and personal life balance, he added. VNS
Dao Quang Vinh, Director of the Institute of Labour and Social Affairs under the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, talks on challenges and opportunities presented to Vietnamese working people by Industry 4.0.
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