The ongoing fourth wave COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions has been a difficult period for many, both locals and foreigners. A reduction in working hours or job scope can be a source of frustration as income and consumer confidence go down. 45% of households reported lower household income in January 2021 than in January 2020 according to the World Bank. It's a sticky situation to be in and it is no wonder that many foreigners in Vietnam are on the lookout to explore new job opportunities.
Whether you are looking to take on a side gig, get a temporary part time job, get leg up in your current field, or even try out a new career path, the good news is that even during this tough period, there are jobs in Vietnam looking for English speakers.
Vietnam’s Economy and Where the Jobs Are
Vietnam has enjoyed robust growth and urbanisation under the governance of a politically stable government. Vietnam has seen greater than 5% GDP per capita growth annually for the past 20 years. Plugged into the global economy, Vietnam has not been spared the effects of COVID-19 but has shown remarkable resilience with achieving GDP growth by 2.9% in 2020, it was one of the few countries in the world able to do so.
Vietnam’s young population means a growing workforce and increasing job opportunities. At the same time, with 22% of the labour force considered trained or skilled, there is still strong demand for expats and their skilled labour to fuel economic growth. The industries that are driving growth include services, manufacturing and construction, and agriculture. Industries that are primed to take off include digital finance services, consumer goods and e-commerce, infrastructure, and transport. Overall, this growth momentum is accompanied by increasing digitalism/ adoption of smart-phone usage across the country, and education/ up-skilling the up-coming generations.
This means foreigners can find jobs in manufacturing, IT, creative work, digital sales and marketing, and education.
Side Hustle: 4 Job Trends in Vietnam
If you are looking for extra hours to tide you over lockdown or even just to try something in a different field, read on for four job trends, resources, and top tips for job hunting particularly for foreigners in Vietnam.
1. Online Freelance
Being a digital nomad means you must have certain marketable skills and a flexible schedule. There is a wide range of jobs available for you here, from copy writing, proof-reading, transcribing, translating, to data entry, and if you can design websites, or are a Shopify genius, there are even more options for you in Vietnam. Many of these jobs may not require a formal job interview per se, perhaps just a quick chat with the firm, nonetheless, a CV can come in handy.
Where to look:
- Jobs in Saigon for Foreigners - a Facebook page with information on jobs available in Ho Chi Minh City
- Freelancer Viet - a website with job listings for freelancing opportunities in Vietnam
- Tip: - reach out to media companies and your favourite local small business, they might be in need of English copy writers
2. Creative Work
A lot of the creative work available can also be done remote or on a freelancing schedule. If you have graphic design skills, know how to use photoshop, create NFTs, or are a Canva expert or video editor, there are many ad hoc jobs in Vietnam available. Do put together a portfolio to show potential employers your experience and skills.
Where to look:
- Vietnam Creative Circle - a Facebook page that acts as a job site for employers and candidates to list their information
3. Digital Marketing/ Social Media Marketing
During this period of social distancing regulations, many employers and firms are increasing their focus on digital marketing activity. Reaching out to customers with relatable content has become more important than ever.
If you have experience with using digital marketing platforms and tools, have social media marketing on your resume, or know how to create content, now is an ideal time to pick up extra work in this field, especially as doing the work remotely is usually not an issue.
Where to look:
- #marketinggirlshcmc - a networking Facebook group for female marketers, communication professionals and business owners across Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
- Clutch.co - list of top digital marketing firms in Vietnam
- Tip: Check out the career pages of marketing agencies, large companies, universities, and schools for gigs. Commission from sales arising from marketing can also be negotiated.
4. Teaching English and More
Searching high and low for part-time teaching or online teaching jobs? Schools, tutoring centres, and even individual parents across Vietnam are always on the lookout for native English language speakers. Many are also looking for teachers specialising in other subjects, including mathematics, sciences, literature, foreign languages, and even psychology or economics.
Make sure you have the necessary qualifications, which could include having a university degree in that subject, teaching certificates, and other relevant experience. The school or centre will likely require you to pass a couple rounds of job interviews and perhaps teach a mock lesson.
Where to look:
- Vietnam Teaching Jobs – a website portal with job postings from large and reputable companies for locations across Vietnam
- Kidtopi – ESL level lessons online for Vietnamese students, with its company headquartered in Hanoi
- One on One English – 25 minutes long lessons online with one student
Searching for Full Time or Longer-Term Jobs?
If you are an expat looking for a more permanent job, we have also put together some resources to help with your search!
Finding A Job with Recruiters
As a foreigner with more experience, you may be looking for a senior/ managerial position or want to build up expertise in certain industries, reaching out to recruitment companies in Vietnam may be the way to go. With the recruiters receiving commission on every successful job recruitment, the onus is on them to match the best application to job responsibilities - which is a load off your shoulders.
General Websites and Resources
Of course, not every business hiring in Vietnam will work with recruiters, many choose to use job posting sites and their own websites instead. You may also be looking for a more entry-level job, for which, submitting your application directly to the company would be more appropriate.
Here is a list of helpful websites to kick off your job search:
Foreigners in Vietnam: Business Visa and Work Permit
If you plan to work in Vietnam as a foreigner, you will be required to get the necessary immigration documents. A business visa is a short stay visa which allows the holder to enter and remain in Vietnam for a maximum period of 12 months.
Foreigners who live and work in Vietnam are generally required to have a Work Permit and a Temporary Residence Card (TRC). The company must be registered in Vietnam in order to be able to apply for a Work Permit on the expats’ behalf. Check in with your company for more details on your visa paperwork and the documents you will be required to submit.
Whether you are finding extra work, trying out something new, or looking to develop your career, we wish you the best with your job search in Vietnam! There are various job opportunities across Vietnam, and we hope our resources will give you a head start on your search.
Once you have landed a job interview or a new gig, you might want to brush up on some useful Vietnamese phrases to stand out in the job market and really get in with your colleagues. Take a look at our list of helpful Vietnamese words to get you started