Jun 30, 2014

Vietnam - Supply of fresh finance graduates far exceeding demand

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VietNamNet BridgeBusiness schools are the targets of many  [ Vietnamese students, who believe that the finance & banking sector can offer better job opportunities. But they are wrong.

Supply: 29,000, demand: 17,000

Can Van Luc, Deputy General Director of the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV), gave surprising figures: Vietnam produces 29,000 new finance & banking bachelors every year, while businesses recruit only 17,000. This means that 12,000 new graduates cannot find jobs in their trained majors.

Regarding the qualification of new school graduates, Luc said his bank could find 200 workers from the 7,000 candidates.

“In general, the competition ratio is 1:35, which means that the bank interviews five candidates to find one employee,” he said.

“They (the candidates) lack soft skills, including communication skills, do not turn up at interviews punctually, wear unsuitable attire and even forget their registration numbers,” he added.

Luc also complained that the English skill of many candidates is very poor. BIDV employs workers based on the marks candidates have. 70 percent of the marks are reserved to assess professional knowledge, while the other 30 percent to assess English proficiency.

“Candidates from Hanoi and HCM City tend to have advantages over students from rural provinces in English skills,” he said.

Commercial Director of Marsh Vietnam Vu My Lan noted that there is no connection between training establishments and businesses. In the insurance sector, for example, schools now mostly produce graduates with skills related to social and healthcare insurance, while the commercial insurance sector cannot find suitable candidates.

Who will be recruited, qualified or VIPs?

However, many university students reject the assertion that thousands of bachelors remain unemployed because of their lack of soft skills or poor professional knowledge.

“The problem lies in the current recruitment mechanism,” Han Thu Thoa, a law school graduate, said.

According to many students, the order of priority set up by businesses when selecting candidates for employment is as follows: 1) family members of VIPs of the same businesses, 2) those with relations with VIPs at state management agencies, 3) those who enter through the “back door”, paying to money to “buy” jobs, and, finally, 4) those with good professional knowledge.

“This,” Thoa said, “explains why business owners keep complaining that they have to retrain new workers to help get them adapted to the job: they put relations before qualification.”

The director of a privately run business admitted that he prefers candidates with close relations with VIPs to inexperienced new graduates, because good relations with VIPs can bring good contracts.

Luc from BIDV agreed that having good relations with VIPs can be a big advantage for candidates in many cases. A recent survey has found that 58 percent of businesses believe relations play a very important role in their businesses.

However, Luc said the above said priority order must not be the principle for businesses, or they will collapse in the future because they cannot recruit good talent.

Ngan Anh

Business & Investment Opportunities 

Saigon Business Corporation Pte Ltd (SBC) is incorporated in Singapore since 1994. 

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