Today “Six Degrees From Dave” continues its series of articles focusing upon global perspectives among fellow colleagues in the staffing industry from each corner of the Earth, in the spirit of fostering best practices and understanding. As part of my continuing effort to research perspectives and identify fundamental patterns among recruiters, newspapers and other mediums, and the role of demographics, I have reached out to global staffing leaders and recruiters to inquire on their methods of recruitment, to examine their personal efforts to develop social networking relationships to foster talent pools, and to identify the types of job boards, blogs, user forums, Listservs, etc. particular and useful to their countries, regions and continents. Today another small step forward to initiate a series of inquiries in the hopes that together we can learn from each other.
Again, I thank each of my colleagues in advance for their willingness to confront the questions posed. Your contributions will assist in identifying patterns we can sort together as part of an ongoing discussion. I invite the staffing organizations of Corporate America and Multi-National companies to contribute in the dialogue.
(*** INTERESTED IN PARTICIPATING? If you are an overseas staffing professional, and wish to be interviewed as part of this series to share your perspective, please email me at ldavemendoza @ gmail.com)
William Chin is a Senior Staffing Manager with experience for staffing goals throughout Asia (Taiwan, Singapore, China, Southeast Asia and Japan). In his current role, he is responsible for recruiting for Intelâ€™s Assembly and Test Factory start-up in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. In his prior role, William was responsible for Intelâ€™s Sales and Marketing functions in China, India, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Cambodia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand. In addition to his staffing responsibilities, William served as Greater Asia Project Manager for corporate-wide implementation of PeopleSoft 8.9 suite of recruiting tools. In addition to staffing, William has also held positions in Compensation supporting IT groups at Intel.
William has been recruiting for over 11 years, primarily as in-house recruiter for Intel since the day he was first approached by an Intel recruiter at a job fair. Earning a BA, East Asian Studies at UC Davis, Masters in Education at UCLA, and a Certificate in Human Resources at UC Berkeley William has prepared himself extensively on both a scholastic and professional level to contribute to the APAC theatre. William and his family originally resided in San Francisco prior to his overseas duties and currently work and live in Ho Chi Minh City since 2006 and over 4 years in Singapore and 2 yrs in PRC on previous APAC onsite projects.
How is culture a factor in the hiring practice different from other countries you recruit from?
“Differing country culture has not been a major issue affecting my recruitment efforts in Asia. However, personal relationships and building a social network is a key factor in expanding a referral network, especially for senior level candidates. Knowing the local language is important in getting your foot in the door with candidates.
As an example, candidates in the US are used to direct cold calls and respond well to recruiter calls. However, in PRC and Vietnam, candidates will ask for source of referral and the relationship you have with the referral source. The usual recruiter response of being unable to disclose source of referral may not gain the confidence of the candidate. Premium branded retainer agencies are able to by pass this hurdle.
Once you’ve gained the confidence of the contact that person may refer you on to other contacts. I’ve had situations where applicants actually have referral other friends and associates knowing that others may be a better fit.
As the market matures and competition intensifies in PRC, applicants are more and more comfortable with direct-source cold calls. Vietnam relies on strong referral network for candidate sourcing.â€
Where is your host country ahead of the USA in certain recruitment tactics?
“Both countries, China and Vietnam, continue to be reliant on relationships and hard copy CV. Use of the internet (online job boards, social networking) for job search is still in its infancy.” Applicants continue to rely on newspaper ads and job boards (junior level) and recruiting agencies (mid to senior level) as channels for job hunt. Companies typically have about 1/3 of hires from employee referrals.
What single event had the most impact on your sourcing/recruiting career? What inspires You as a Recruiter?
“The person who originally hired me had the single biggest impact on me as a recruiter. Firstly, he saw a potential in me as a recruiter. It’s been a blast ever since.
He was the first to send me on a temporary assignment in Taiwan, what was initially a two-month project turned out to be a two-year project through Singapore and China. I later returned to the US but found myself continuing to work on international projects. Some years later, I made a person decision to localize and working based in Singapore.â€
Does your staffing organization â€œDIRECT SOURCEâ€ from competitor companies to hire talent?
“Yes, we do direct source from competitor companies. However, as an employer, we have strict ethical practices when approaching candidates.
One of my key strategies for building a strong in-house recruiting team is to hire people with the passion and savvy for recruiting. One does not typically find this type of talent in traditional HR. I set my strategy on hiring agency recruiters to work as in-house recruiters. We use the usual telephone direct source approaches. Social and professional network sites (e.g., LinkedIn) is a great source to generate candidates and project.”
Can you identify specific obstacles of the countries you are responsible for, – particularly in terms of HOW EMPLOYMENT LAWS ARE FACTORS – specific to direct sourcing & hiring, and cultural differences in the recruiting process?
“There are no specific laws which have a direct impact on our ability to recruit in either PRC. There are limitations on hiring foreign passport holders (foreigners and/or returning overseas-Chinese). Hiring senior-levels and technical experts are allowed but only with documentation that you have exhausted all other recruitment efforts. Employment contracts may not exceed 10 years.
For local PRC citizens, a valid â€œHouKouâ€ (residence permit) is required to receive social insurance benefits. For example, someone who has a HouKou in Xian, China working in Shanghai is not eligible for social insurance benefits because the person is working out of his/his home jurisdiction. However, this is not a major limitation in recruiting or attracting qualified candidates as higher paying jobs in major cities more then compensates for the lost in social insurance benefits.
The Vietnamese market is similar to China in recruitment practices. While companies may hire foreigners and overseas-returning Vietnamese, employers are required to demonstrate and document that all other recruitment efforts to hire local Vietnamese have been exhausted. Employment contracts must be within a defined period.
The government of Singapore actively supports recruitment efforts for highly technical talent into the country to support its growing industries. Work permits and permanent residency permits are easy to obtain.”
How are US and recruitment culture in Vietnam different? How are they similar?
“The use of online employment recruitment activities is significantly greater in the US both in terms of applicants using online resources (applying online, use of job portals) and company reliance on corporate websites.
For example, new graduates will typically attend campus job fairs and apply through job boards. Junior staff will utilize job boards to post CVs in their job search. Senior level and people/project managers rarely use job boards. They will have their resumes sent to a search firm. In PRC, they are probably getting calls every day from recruiters.
In Vietnam, many new graduates do not even have resumes, let a lone having a well-written one. They are not used to using online resume submission and majority of companies continue to collect hard-copy resume from students. The experienced professional (including passive candidates) will have a ready-prepared resume. In my experience, once being introduced as a corporate recruiter, candidates will generally send a CV within 1-2 days.