In theory, building a software development team in Vietnam sounds pretty simple: you post a few openings on job boards, skim through applications and facilitate interviews. How difficult could it be? Well, as many businesses and entrepreneurs will tell you, the process is often more complicated and nuanced than that.
Building the right dev team can help you see your company’s vision to fruition. But the wrong team can lead to disaster.
One mistake Joe Low, Co-founder of Wonderlabs.vn often sees is that businesses are only concerned with building a tech team in Vietnam to fulfill their short-term goals. They’re not thinking about long-term growth plans. Often, this means the team is not well managed and thought of as “tissue-paper”. This is not what we encourage at Wonderlabs.vn.
1. Make A Plan
The first thing we ask all potential clients is what is their business’ long-term strategy. What are their growth plans and their technology roadmap. Making a long-term roadmap will help you and us create plans and timelines to keep your hiring goals on track. We can start small with a team of 3 to 5 software developers, but grow that over time as we build trust and also develop an understanding of how to manage a distributed, dedicated offsite or offshore software engineering team.
2. Be Specific
Before we even post one recruitment listing, we will ask you for specifics. Specifics about your product, your projects and your existing teams. We ask you where have you had successes when building an offshore or offsite dedicated software team in the past. This helps us to create a job posting that is not generic or similar to other companies searching for software engineers in Vietnam. It is also good to ask what kind of personality traits you are seeking in the software developers you want to hire on your team. It’s easy to be vague and just go through the motions when posting a job ad, but this usually leads to hiring headaches down the road.
3. Implement Company Referral Programs
We had had great success at Wonderlabs.vn with a referral programme. Many of our existing tech talents will recommend their friends. And because we know that our dev teams are good, they have begun the vetting process when they recommend an existing connection or acquaintance. When a software engineer puts forth a referral, they’re indicating that they believe this person has the talent to be a great developer! And our referrals can come from all across the country even though we are only in Ho Chi Minh City as of this time.
4. Prioritize Intelligence Over Experience
This is something that varies from employer to employer. Experience is very much valued, and looking at where a Vietnamese software developer has worked will tell you a lot about his habits and abilities as a coder. And for many roles outside of the tech industry, years of experience are a necessity when it comes to hiring technical developers. Experience means experience in problem solving, and translates into the quantity of code written. But a hidden value is also testing the tech talents for their intelligence, attitude and propensity to grow. Vietnamese software developers are known to a be a quick study, so if you pick a team with a propensity to learn and grow fast, then your offshore software development team will be much more nimble on its feet, and able to move with the ever-changing landscape that is the tech industry.
PS: This is an opinion piece by Keith Tan, Group CEO of Wonderlabs. Wonderlabs is the leading service provider helping companies build and manage software development teams in Indonesia and Vietnam. Across our various shared and dedicated centers, we have over 350+ active software developers. Since our founding in 2015, we have grown rapidly through innovation and our relentless mission focus - Connecting you to success and productivity. Alumni of Wonderlabs have gone on to work at some of the biggest companies in Southeast Asia.