As employees of international IT companies, software engineers in Ho Chi Minh City have racked up a multitude of experiences these last couple of years: Various pandemic responses. Hybrid working or full remote. Global economy, international conflicts and trade trends impacting on most fields of businesses. AI and machine learning making headway fast.
2022 has seen a return to the «new normal» where we think company culture is becoming an arguably even more important factor at the workplace. Remote working routines eventually end up as a task list to wade through, and little more. You spend substantial parts of your awake hours working, so why not add a fulfilling and meaningful environment providing togetherness, joy and balance?
How did the year play out at Facilitated Work Hub? For our employees and our clients (whom we call co-employers — as it positively implies the equality and colleagueship our employees enjoy)?
The Benefits of knowing the Business you are working with
All Senior Software, QA engineers and Architects at Facilitated Work Hub benefit from working as valuable and integral colleagues with Norwegian tech companies in permanent full time remote positions, providing core product development. With a long-term mindset from the very beginning, engineers at our hub enjoy stable and lasting career progression. These are the business domains our engineers are exposed to:
With the world population crossing over 8 billion people, food demand is rising. Through digitization, we can improve our food safety and production volume. Our client AKVA Group, a major international player in aqua technology, has expanded their team in Vietnam by 75% and are finalising their latest installation control app for launching. Close global collaboration is the rule within AKVA, who recently arranged another Hackathon in cooperation with leading salmon farming organisation Grieg Seafood. These innovative tech events highlight the true benefits of equality in Akva Group; colleagues across the globe from Canada, Chile, Norway and Vietnam work together as equals, share challenges, solve problems and build innovative solutions – all while having great fun.
In regard to career development Ms. Thao, who used to be our Talent Acquisition Coordinator, decided to study front end development in her evenings. After asking for a chance to work as an intern at FWH, AKVA Group gave her the opportunity. As the saying goes, “Anyone can be anything”; this truly echoes through our company. Employees benefit from the freedom of choosing their career progression to unlock their own potential, rather than being stifled by a top-down career path based on a rigid career development system.
Our team with Elfo AS have been recently strengthened with another Senior Fullstack Engineer, reconfirming their belief and trust in the skills and talents in Vietnam. Having acquired a big new airport retail customer, 2023 looks promising for Elfo. Worth noting is also the deep product knowledge prevalent within the VN team, exemplified by one Senior Fullstack .Net developer celebrating her 13-year work anniversary with FWH and Elfo this year.
In another great example, one Senior Fullstack Engineer without any background in UX/UI, went beyond his job scope and redesigned Elfo’s website as a hobby. This pro-active initiative was highly appreciated by Elfo’s CEO Pål Mangal, who made sure the new design was successfully featured and implemented. This is a workplace which gives you the freedom and power to pave your everyday work life.
Noria is a European leader in industrial insurance. In uncertain times like these, with the invasion of Ukraine, increased energy and food prices and less consumer demand, insurance is even more highly valued than before as corporations seek assurance and clarity of the road ahead. Noria is getting ready to broaden their approach to include banking solutions and have already scaled up phenomenally in 2023 through Noria Vest, adding consultancy services to their arsenal.
The Noria Vietnam team has strengthened through doubling their QA engineer team in 2022, a sign of satisfaction with the effort provided by local testers. This summer also saw the entire VN team travelling to the Noria HQ in Sandefjord, Norway, for extended close collaboration with their Norwegian colleagues. Recurring intercontinental visits like these only happen in a company environment founded on absolute equality where your professional input is not only appreciated, but also expected. Such advantages become pretty clear when experienced, certainly playing their part in low turnover at FWH.
Our Azets team is a glossy poster image of true bi-national collaboration, counting both a Norwegian developer in Ho Chi Minh City and a Vietnamese consultant on-site in Norway among its members. Adding one senior Frontend developer on the VN side last month, the guys are developing control software for external Azets contract consultants. Smart digitization solutions like these save man-years and cost for Azets´ customers. In Norway, government institutions and companies alike have come pretty far on digitization in the last few years. It can often feel meaningful being part of projects causing actual real impact, as opposed to sub-contracting features for short-term projects on vague external products you take no ownership or pride in.
Our partnership with e-health groundbreaker DNV Imatis, going back to 2012, is as strong as ever. A recent workshop trip to Norway for the entire Vietnamese team was an eye-opener for some of the recent additions, seeing their medical software in use on-site at local hospitals. As senior engineer Tinh stated: «I love the product we are making. It´́s the first time I can say that in my career! » In a post-pandemic world, with staff shortages in need of effectivized procedures and contactless solutions in demand, it’s hard to imagine a better field than e-health to build your career in.
Building- and construction industry
This December launched our latest partnership, welcoming new co-employer Infotech. A market leader in construction site software, Infotech has a stated ambition to help companies in the building- and construction industry save time and cost by strengthening health and safety at construction sites. And, as a direct consequence, saving human lives as well. The heavy criticism of World Cup stadium building horror practices in Qatar might be a relevant pointer to the vast international growth potential of Infotech´s field of expertise.
In October, FWH celebrated our 20 Years company anniversary. This durability shows employees and co-employers alike our strong commitment and dedication to long-term thinking when hiring stable colleagues. This long-term aspect is crucial for our employees, as this means our co-employers invest time and money in them as an integral part of their company, rather than treating them as outsiders. In the outsourcing sector in general, you usually experience the stark opposite. Flat structured long-term focus has created a strong and loyal sense of belonging for our employees, enabling them to enjoy feeling seen, listened to, respected and valued. As high-level engineers deserve.
Several of our employees celebrated 5- and 10-years’ work anniversaries at the hub in 2022, filling us ala with heartfelt gratitude towards what we count as family members. We believe you choose to stay only when the cultural environment, in combination with challenging and interesting tasks, feels right for you.
The event activities this year was concluded in style with an amazing employee retreat in gorgeous Ha Long Bay in November, bringing new experiences and adventures while joining everyone together — as the group of friends we are!
Successful recruitment is another highlight of this year. Several new colleagues have brought fresh energy and complementary skills to the hub. Highly skilled, experienced individuals tend to enjoy working with like-minded people. Makes sense, right? Among others we had the pleasure of welcoming our first Head of Talent Management, Ms. Trinh, who has made great impact in adding structure and visibility to the corporate division.
NEW EXPERIENCES AND SOLVING CHALLENGES
FWH have experienced the same as companies everywhere when it comes to getting people back in the office. Working from home feels convenient, sure. But as many of our employees tell us, it is also boring and uninspiring. Recent team talks have revealed that more and more people appreciate coming back. This trickle has to be converted to a stream.
Our service for employees includes facilitation and an environment geared towards a sharing culture, adaptation to a Norwegian flat hierarchy style, individual growth and overall happiness. In a post-pandemic setting, the advantages of coming together have sometimes been forgotten in favour of instant convenience. This is a loss. Rediscovering who we are as a hub, fostering the sense of community spirit, will be a main focus area in 2023. By definition, a hub is a melting pot and meeting point of people, opinions and ideas. An empty hub is about as useful as a pair of cross-country skis on a tropical beach.
THE YEAR AHEAD
As a Scandinavian philosopher once said: «It’s hard to make predictions — especially about the future. » What surprises will 2023 have in store?
We reckon that reinforcing our company culture, while sprinkling it with fresh takes, is the way forward. Work life is in constant flux — as is the world. By offering trust and stability to employees, co-employers will continue to value the quality work they receive from their Vietnamese colleagues. Because quality never goes out of style. Any “new normal” will never discard quality.
Thank you for your continued support.
We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Looking forward to seeing you in 2023!