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Employer Branding Survey

Conducted by Navigos Search in 2011

Building a strong employment brand is a strategic way to attract and retain talents in Vietnam

Products branding has become common knowledge, and it is what marketers practice to increase the sales of their products or services. Employment branding is not that popular. What is employment branding and why it is important to attract and retain talents. Employment branding is the message on "what are employer's unique selling points and why employer's workplace is appealing to talents". In a dynamic and competitive market like Vietnam, the battle for talents has been there for years and is getting stronger over time. With the purpose of helping companies understand better about Employment Branding, Navigos Search conducted the survey from 24 January through March 15, 2011, amongst over 4,800 senior-level people who are working in both local and multi-national corporations. We would like to understand what experienced professionals in Vietnam perceive as good values of "an employer of choice". We believe that by having a good Employer's Value Proposition, companies will be able to attract and retain talents.

This report was prepared to present our survey's findings which include: · · · · Overview of the survey "Employer Branding" What makes a company to be an Employer of Choice? What are the most popular communication channels for Employment Branding messages? Suggestions on how to build an Employer Brand?

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Overview of the survey



Male Female

3005 Male 1796 Female





College degree Bachelor degree

528 College degree 3486 Bachelor degree 787 Master degree, MBA and above

Total Participants 4801 senior-level professionals



Master degree, MBA and above



Hanoi Ho Chi Minh City

1627 people living in Hanoi 2295 people living in Ho Chi Minh 879 people from other regions



22.1% 24.1%

>10 years 6-10 years 3-5 years

1061 people with less than 3 years experience 1287 people with 3 to 5 years experience 1296 people with 6 to 10 years experience 1157 people with more than 10 years experience


<3 years


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What makes a company an Employer of Choice?


Must be a multi-national/global company Support for employees' training/development and growth Have a good leadership team Have a good working environment physically and spiritually Must be a big company with a large number of employees Have a big factory/facility Have a good office at Grade A Office Building Pay good salary, bonuses and good benefits

66.4% 14.3% 71.8%



0.0% 10.0% 20.0% 30.0% 40.0% 50.0% 60.0% 70.0% 80.0%

The FOUR most important criteria to be an Employer of Choice

Have a good leadership team Have a good working environment physically and spiritually Support for employees' training/development and growth Pay good salary, bonuses and good benefits Response Percentage 76.0% 75.2% 71.8% 66.4%

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Knowing what talents care about the most will help the companies locate the appropriate resources to get to the right talents.

- Leadership is everything!

There were 76% of participants considered having a good leadership team as the top criteria that the most attractive employer brand should have. A good leadership team today is not only a driven element of a successful business, but also a principal attribute helps organization to become an employer of choice. As observation, many companies are attracting talents by offering higher salaries and bonuses only. This survey's result is the witness for the importance of leadership team in attracting and retaining talents. This finding is similar to our poll question's result last year on "why a talent joins you and why a talent leaves you". In Vietnam labor market, it seems that leaders are hired and promoted because of their "technical" expertise and achievements rather than their "management" expertise. Before somebody becomes a leader, focus is all about growing himself or herself. But after he/she becomes a leader, success is all about growing and developing others. Therefore, when you hire a candidate for a leader's role, look for potentials and ingredients that will make him/her a great leader in the future. Those characteristics would be having a vision, great inter-personal skills, integrity, passion and maturity. Companies should also relentlessly train and upgrade their leaders, making them the "reasons" why a talent would want to work for.

- Creating a good working environment physically and spiritually ­ creating a life at work!

Employees can only boost their performances in a good environment. Work environment is the combination of a physical workplace and the "values" you live in that environment. If you say "open communication" is one of your company's values then do you actually set up your office that way and do we live that value daily. The candidates who come to your office for interviews can feel that, and especially your existing employees know that and they will talk about that value to many other outsiders. So how do you want them to talk about you as an employer?

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- Training and development sells!

In a market like Vietnam, where the knowledge and skills taught at schools and universities are not enough for work environment, training and coaching at jobs become so critical and valuable. Companies who offer opportunities for learning and development will get the high scores. But training is costly. Yes. However, training is not only sending employees to expensive classes to get certificates. Companies can be very creative in training and development: mentoring system; coaching system; using internal training resources, etc. Sometimes, companies need to send employees to classes but please make sure to measure Return On Investment (ROI). ROI would be changes in behaviors, processes or performances before and after the training.

- A competitive compensation system!

This is not something new. It is a good trend that nowadays, companies in Vietnam gradually change from a traditional way of paying (i.e. base salary only) to a new way of having a competitive base salary and attractive variables. This Pay-ForPerformance model is now well received by candidates in Vietnam.

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We are small companies. We are not Multi-National Companies. How can we become Employers of Choice?

When we spoke at some events recently sharing about recruitment and employment branding, many people asked us this question. Well, through this survey we have the answer for you. Historically, Multinational Companies (MNCs) in Vietnam have enjoyed a big advantage: local employees viewed them as employers of choice: offering better environment, better pay and better career prospects than domestic companies. In this survey, only a small number of respondents think that being a MNC or having a Grade A office matters. We think that there is a shift in candidates' attitude. It might be explained by the consistent growth that domestic companies have even during the economy downturn. Domestic companies nowadays also pay lots of attention to building their reputation and employment branding to attract talents. They are significantly improving and also offering lots of good career prospects to candidates. In addition, many local senior candidates hit the ceiling at MNCs and want to shift and contribute to domestic companies. Therefore, regardless of nationality and size of the business, companies have opportunities to win talents by building their employment brands and effectively communicating their commitments to their employees' development and to Vietnam market.

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When you consider joining a company, how do you search for information/advice?


I will seek advice from my family I will seek advice from my friends I will seek advice from recruitment consultants I will seek advice from the people I know who are currently working in that company I will search for information about this company on media such as newspapers, internet, websites, etc. 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 61.8% 70%

The survey also revealed that 61.8% of the participant admitted that when they considered working for a company and want to check about their reputation, they have searched for information about this company on media such as newspapers, internet, websites, and ect. Knowing this will help company use the right communication channel for employment branding messages.

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How Do I Start to Build An Employment Brand?


· To understand where an employer is positioned in the employment market and to determine the appropriate action plan is fundamental. · Understanding the gap between where you are now and where you want to be will give you guidlines.

· The EVP gives current and future employees a reason to work for an employer. · Employers that manage their EVP effectively benefit from an increase in their talent pool and employee engagement, as well as a potential decrease in salary costs. Employer Value Proposition (EVP) · Please note what candidates care about the most as an employer of choice that we presented in this survey.

(Source: Corporate Leadership Council)

· The EVP is a useful tool used by HR, Marketing and Communications to be able to emphasis the most attractive factors and be consistent in the employer communications. · Choose the right channels to communicate · Create a good candidate experience: how you handle job applications; how you refuse the non-fit candidates; how you conduct your interviews; which Communication impressions as an employer you want to leave for the candidates who come to your office; have you conducted a candidate experience survey - ask them.

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We wish you be an Employer of Choice and successful in retaining and attracting talents for your business in Vietnam.

Ho Chi Minh Office: 130 Suong Nguyet Anh St., District 1 - Tel: (84 8) 3925 5000 - Fax: (84 8) 3925 5111 Hanoi Office: Vincom City Tower B, 14th Floor, 191 Ba Trieu Street, Hai Ba Trung District - Tel: (84 4) 3974 3033 Email: [email protected] - Website:

-Fax: (84 4) 3974 3032

Navigos Search is a member of NPA, The Worldwide Recruiting Network (, your connection to premier independent recruiting firms located throughout Asia, Australia, Europe and the America.

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