In a recent Vietnam Innovators episode, Daniel Le, Co-founder, and Mike Doan, Investor and Advising Co-founder of HeyDevs, share their inspiring journeys to Vietnam and the significant impact their company aims to make in this dynamic Southeast Asian nation.
HeyDevs, as described by Daniel, is “currently the most innovative solution in the APAC region, fundamentally transforming traditional sourcing agencies into a scalable platform.” The company’s vision in Vietnam is two-fold: to empower tech industry clients with more effective recruiting strategies and to enhance the candidate experience, ensuring a positive and comfortable recruitment process for tech professionals.
HeyDevs is poised to make a significant impact on Vietnam’s recruitment landscape as the country continues to thrive as a tech and business hub in Southeast Asia, unlocking its true potential for clients and candidates alike.
But why start in Vietnam?
Daniel, originally from Germany, brings a wealth of experience to the table with over ten years in the tech industry and eight years specifically in recruiting. He’s been responsible for building and scaling tech hubs for international companies, including big names like Nike, Metro, and Amazon. Three years ago, he returned to Vietnam, setting the stage for HeyDevs’ journey in the country.
Meanwhile, Mike spent over a decade in the United States, earning a Ph.D. in computer science and working with startups and tech giants like Google. His journey took him from co-founding a blockchain project called Harmony One to collaborating with Andy Rubin, known as the “Father of Android OS.” Eventually, Mike returned to Vietnam and initiated a venture focused on Web3 blockchain technology.
In the conversation, the changing landscape of the Vietnam job market piqued Daniel and Mike’s interest. Daniel explained that when he returned to Vietnam three years ago, he observed a significant shift – the market had evolved from employer-centric to candidate-centric. In simpler terms, there were numerous job openings but a shortage of qualified candidates. This shift had initiated a “war for talent” in Vietnam, a situation he had encountered earlier in Europe and the US. The experience gained from those regions uniquely positioned HeyDevs to assist Vietnamese companies in navigating this challenging environment.
Mike further emphasized their personal connection to Vietnam. The two have Vietnamese roots, and the country holds a special place in their hearts. Beyond business, they share a deep emotional bond with Vietnam, making their decision to establish HeyDevs here even more significant.
In essence, their goal is not only to help Vietnamese companies succeed in the talent war but also to elevate Vietnam’s position on the global stage. So, when asked why they chose Vietnam as the base for HeyDevs, the answer was a fusion of professional expertise and personal dedication to the country they call home.
Challenges in Vietnam’s Tech Recruiting Sector
HeyDevs stands at the forefront of transforming tech recruiting in Vietnam by addressing challenges with a scalable platform, offering digital solutions, and advocating for a more holistic approach to recruitment and retention.
To Mike, the power of active sourcing in recruiting is essential. He pointed out that active sourcing boasts an 80% effectiveness rate in Germany, while in Vietnam, it stands at around 60-65%. This disparity reflects the evolving nature of the job market in Vietnam, with Western countries leading the way in recruitment effectiveness.
HeyDevs, Mike explains, takes a simple yet innovative approach by transforming the best hiring practices into a scalable platform. This shift is pivotal because it moves away from the traditional agency model, which is predominant in Vietnam, towards a more efficient and scalable solution that can serve multiple clients simultaneously.
As for the recruiters’ side, Daniel emphasized that the role of HR executives in Vietnam often extends to include recruiting tasks, which can be overwhelming given the complexity of the recruitment process, especially in the tech sector. Daniel highlighted two key challenges: the scarcity of time and knowledge. Despite their many responsibilities, he stated that HR professionals may lack the time and tech-specific expertise required for effective tech recruiting.
Additionally, the rapidly evolving IT landscape poses a challenge, as even tech professionals struggle to keep up with the constant influx of new technologies. Per Daniel, normal recruiters face an even steeper learning curve. To bridge this gap, HeyDevs aims to provide not only more time for understanding new technologies but also digital tools and solutions that enhance recruiters’ efficiency.
Beyond salaries, the recruitment process involves various expenses, such as marketing campaigns for employer branding and employee compensation and benefits. Daniel added that organizations must recognize the high cost of recruitment and consider investing in employee retention strategies, such as appropriate compensation and benefits, to achieve a more cost-effective solution.
Watch the full episode here