Desperate times: HR teams now recruiting from the street

VIETNAM: The country’s acute labour shortage situation has driven HR teams from manufacturing and exporting companies in the southern region to hire workers through roadside recruitment campaigns.

An HR manager from a woodworking firm in Binh Duong said, “We used to sit in an air-conditioned room, providing recruitment consultancy services via the phone. Now we need some 300 new workers to fulfil wood products export orders from Europe, but few apply. So, I sit on the sidewalk from 6:00am to late afternoon where I have a better chance of meeting job seekers.”

Another HR specialist claimed that there are at least a dozen companies in the Industrial Park that also employ the same sidewalk hiring tactics. "In the past, we just hang a ‘Job Vacancies’ sign at the entrance whenever we need new workers. Now we have to sit outside the industrial park to recruit workers, yet we only manage to hire a few a day,” she lamented.

An HR head from a garment company in Ho Chi Minh City said that the millions of migrant workers who left the country were still too afraid of the pandemic to return to their previous employers. Many others have also found new jobs within their home towns.

Despite many new attractive offers, including higher salaries of VND 10 million to VND 17 million (USD 434 to USD 739) a month, travel and accommodation assistance, and Tet (Lunar New Year) bonuses to lure the workers back, recruitment remains a challenge in the manufacturing zones.

The Ho Chi Minh City Center of Forecasting Manpower Needs and Labor Market Information said the city urgently needs 43,000 to 57,000 workers while neighbouring Binh Duong Province is looking for around 50,000 workers.

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