Vietnam faces severe shortage of IT manpower

14:48 | 15/08/2017

Vietnam is facing a severe shortage of information technology (IT) workers though there is a large number of universities and colleges teaching IT nationwide, heard a conference on IT human resource development for the Mekong Delta organized in Can Tho City on Friday.

Ngo Van Toan, deputy general director of Global CyberSoft Vietnam, said at the conference that the lack of IT workers has been a huge obstacle to the development of this sector in the delta.

According to Toan, Vietnam currently has 142 universities and 112 colleges having IT faculties. Among them, 31 universities and 18 colleges are in HCMC, and 34 universities and 30 colleges are in the Mekong Delta.

However, businesses active in the IT sector have always been complaining that the labor market cannot meet their demand for IT workers in terms of both quantity and quality.

Toan said the country is currently lacking 78,000 IT workers a year, and the figure would rise to 100,000 IT workers a year by 2020. The number of IT jobs increases by 47% a year but that of IT workers only grows by 8%.

Moreover, less than 30% of the candidates can meet the recruiters’ requirements, Toan added.

Although enterprises have huge demand for IT workers and often offer high salaries for IT positions, many universities and colleges cannot enroll enough students of IT, except top universities like the HCMC University of Technology, the Can Tho University and the HCMC University of Natural Sciences.

However, top universities’ enrollment is limited. In particular, the HCMC University of Technology is allowed to enroll only about 300 students for its IT faculty a year, while this number at the HCMC University of Natural Sciences is about 400-500 students a year.

Tran Cao De, dean of Can Tho University’s IT faculty, said the faculty is assigned to enroll 700-800 students a year. “Sometime we enroll a little more, but still within the quota,” De said.

Nguyen Phuong Lam, deputy director of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI)’s Can Tho branch, said the lack of IT workers has made the IT sector in the city remain underdeveloped. According to Lam, only 1,000 of 50,000 enterprises in the city are active in the IT sector, and only 10 of them are software companies.

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