Expert Fullstack Engineer Pham Thi Thuy celebrated 10 years with us in May this year. Such an occasion warranted a party in-house in our new sparkling office in district 1 in HCMC. Thuy is not the first to reach 10 years with us, and many more will follow soon.
Thuy shares her story about her career so far. She talks about how it is to work closely with Norwegian Software Engineers as colleagues, and how she came to stay long.
Yes, Thuy is a colleague to her Norwegian developers. This is a long-term work relationship. She is treated as their equal, discuss solutions, and influence the product development. At Facilitated Work Hub we do not practise the typical “collect and clarify specification” client-vendor relationship that developers in Vietnam usually experience when working with international software development teams..
How is the FWH model different from software outsourcing?
“I started at FWH in 2011, as the sole developer for CMS company Antera. A few years ago, I joined a larger team working for e-health giant Imatis. Our model here at FWH is pretty unique: we are not an outsourcing company. We do not rotate on projects, we all have permanent stable positions in one Norwegian company. FWH facilitates all teams, and bonds us together through events and weekly happenings. That’s how we create unity and cross-team office spirit,” says Thuy.
Yes, Thuy is 100% correct, all software developers at Facilitated Work Hub work in permanent long-term positions for Norwegian companies under a co-employment model. These companies make you a key person through investing in your product knowledge. With skilled and trained staff being their main assets, a low turnover rate is essential. At FWH, our long-term thinking starts at recruitment. We’re not only looking to hire the right person — we also need to retain you in the long run.
What did we do to make you want to stay long with us?
“The main reasons are flexible hours and a nice and friendly management. But I enjoy all my developer tasks as well, they are certainly suitable to me!”
What excites you about your co-employer in Norway?
“Imatis is an award-winning global leader in e-health. We design and build integrated systems for hospitals. I love my job because of the chance to work on a myriad of different systems. I can continue to develop my technical expertise, while also improving my communication and soft skills. One time I got the chance to visit our HQ in Porsgrunn, Norway, too. It was nice to meet my colleagues face to face while working together on-site. Impressive stuff. They are always supportive and open, and we solve problems like the proper team we are.”
What’s your favorite memory from your decade with us?
“Well, I have many! If you force me to pick just one, I’ll actually go for a company trip to Mui Ne. Watching my son play so well with my colleagues´ children made me feel truly happy.”
What aspects of the special Facilitated Work Hub culture do you think appeals the most to new employees?
“Probably the social side. We talk a lot, enjoy daily fruit breaks together, and every Friday we are served lunch and drinks during our Happy Break. This creates unity among us, regardless of teams. But go ahead and create more activities, we´re all for it! As our new office nears completion, I also think the attractive design will appeal to candidates turning up for job interviews.”
What’s the key to successful software development?
“In my opinion, passion is the key. Passion for the field, and your job. In addition, a sense of affiliation and togetherness among colleagues is essential. This makes it so much easier to do your very best — and success can only be achieved through maximum effort.”
Does job title matter?
Many local developers aim for positions like tech leads or project managers as soon as they turn 30. Thuy chose instead to stay on as an ever more experienced software engineer. Does she have tips for others who do not dream of being bumped up to unwanted middle management roles?
“People have different plans and career trajectories. I love coding and product development. The tasks of a PM does not sound tempting to me at all. For passionate programmers like me, FWH is a perfect place to unfold!”
How can developers stay up to date and keep creating value?
“I’m still learning at work, where I get to research new tech. Everything changes; systems, products and technology. We have no choice but to keep ourselves updated on all these fields, non-stop, to be able to provide valuable input. Simple as that.”
Any advice to parents on how to combine your long-term career with a healthy work-life balance?
“Good question. This interests me, especially as a female Asian developer. My family is my number one priority. I try adding extra studies and learning processes during slow periods at work. If I need to research something at home, this happens after bedtime for my children.”
What’s your expectations for your next 10 years at FWH?
“You pushed me down memory lane now! We were only 5-6 staff here when I started. Now we are about 45. We will have passed the 100 mark before my next anniversary celebration, because I expect us to continue expanding, securing more co-employer clients. At that stage, we should add an in-house kindergarten, don’t you think? That would be excellent!”
What’s your personal future ambition?
“I usually plan 6 – 10 years ahead. Those years I hope to spend here”.
Facilitated Work Hub keeps experiencing organic growth through happy employees and satisfied co-employers expanding their teams.