Young Vietnamese uninterested in manufacturing jobs: survey

By Dat Nguyen   November 26, 2018 | 10:27 pm PT
Young Vietnamese uninterested in manufacturing jobs: survey
Young people’s lack of interest in manufacturing jobs is one of the biggest challenges to firms. Photo by Shutterstock/Thi
Young people’s lack of interest in manufacturing jobs has led to a manpower shortage in the sector, a survey has found.

The survey, by Navigos Group, a leading recruitment company, released Wednesday said 42 percent of manufacturing firms polled said this is one of the biggest challenges to them.

With the digital transformation brought about by the fourth industrial revolution, young people's increased proactiveness and attractive job alternatives "undoubtedly affect the career choices of young professionals," it said.

But the top challenge is the competitive market, with 58 percent of employers saying it is difficult to hire people.

Almost four out of 10 employers said the long distance between the workplace and the nearest city is a challenge. They were referring both to employees moving in near the workplace and commuting daily to work.

These have resulted in a manpower shortage. The shortage affects existing workers, with 37 percent saying their workload increased as a result and 7 percent even having difficulty making time for personal activities.

Employers said the top reasons for the manpower shortage are a lack of qualified candidates (35 percent), compensation- and benefit-related factors (17 percent) and not enough candidates overall (14 percent).

To address their manpower shortage, manufacturing businesses are tying up with schools to find candidates.

Vocational schools rank highest among their list of preferred training facilities (49 percent), followed by universities (42 percent) and junior colleges (24 percent).

However, the manufacturing sector also has a high rate of employee loyalty, with 73 percent of employers having a turnover rate of below 20 percent.

Forty percent of the workers surveyed said they have been at the current firm for over five years, and almost a quarter (23 percent), from three to five years.

The top reason for quitting is uncompetitive salary and benefits (49 percent). Unclear promotion policies is second (43 percent) followed by low and slow salary increases (30 percent).

Other reasons for quitting are differences with the direct manager, location far from the nearest city and workplace pollution.

Gaku Echizenya, CEO of Navigos Group Vietnam, said unless Vietnam takes action to accelerate the technological transition, it risks "losing an attractive profile in the eyes of foreign investors."

"All in all, efforts made by businesses to invest in machinery and tools must be solidified by improving the quality of manpower."

The survey polled over 3,200 employees and 200 employers in the manufacturing sector.

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