Having young population with 65 per cent of people below the age of 35 years, Vietnam seems to have a tremendous labour pool to become a top nation for outsourcing IT human resources.
Microsoft chairman of emerging markets Orlando Ayala talks with VIR at the Accelerating Asia Pacific 2010 Conference on how Vietnam can turn its talented pool into a national power.
Human capital is considered a key contributing factor to the development of Vietnam’s economy. What do you think of its local human resources?
Vietnam’s economic dragon is its 86 million young and hard working population, 90 per cent of which are below or within working age, and 65 per cent are under the age of 35 years. With this demographic profile, the Vietnamese government in its ICT 2020 vision recognises the potential to develop atechnology-savvy workforce for both domestic and global markets. Moreover, the Vietnam Competitiveness Report, recently launched on November 30 by the government and Professor Michael Porter of the Harvard Business School, cites access to and better use of technology as a way to improve the skills of employees that will lead to increased labour productivity and national competitiveness.
Microsoft sees the development of local human resources as critical to achieving both the ICT vision and national competitive agenda, and we stand ready to continue our partnership with the government in this very important area.
What can the Vietnamese government do to develop its local human resources?
There are four focuses on promoting human resources development in Vietnam comprising to building skills capacity and develop workforce, local innovation, eco-systems for a company that can produce software for export, and boost the local education system.
From my view, I think Vietnam should focus on education with 21st century skills at early stages by providing them with problem solutions, critical thinking, collaboration, communication and maths.
We have a proven track record and global experience in partnering with governments on providing innovative technology and human capacity building to advance its national priorities. It has long been our vision to help people and businesses throughout the world to realise their full potential, and we stand ready to partner with the government to leverage Vietnam’s greatest resource – its people. Vietnam’s national competitiveness and ICT development will be fuelled by its human resources.
How can Microsoft help?
Microsoft currently contributes to human capital development through capacity building programmes that include teacher and student education and IT access programmes, partners network readiness programmes, local IT software start-up programmes, an innovation centre to train and certify local IT professionals.
Through our education programmes in partnership with the Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) for instance, the Partners-in-Learning programme, DreamSpar, Live@edu, Imagine Cup, to providing free technology and training to start-ups and local businesses such as BizSpark, WebsiteSpark to partnering with the Ministry of Information and Communications to set up a Microsoft Innovation Centre that provides consultation to bring ideas to market and to provide training and globally-recognised certification for local ICT professionals.
Under our Partners-in-Learning programme, Microsoft works with the MoET and the cities’ and provincial departments of Education and Training to increase access to technology and improve its use in education. The first five-year phase of the programme benefitted over 7,000 school leaders, 50,000 teachers and around two million students.
The next phase of partnership is currently being discussed by the parties. This phase will focus on developing a roadmap for ICT integration in education, particularly in building innovative schools to deeply engage Microsoft technologies and solutions in the schools.
Microsoft will continue focusing on improving teachers and students capacity with 21st century skills, including peer coaching model by increasing and improving local innovative teachers as a sustainable model. More importantly, the programme will seek to align with MoET's initiative to “improve Young Viet generation”.