Oct 05, 2021
According to experts from British University Vietnam (BUV) and Navigos Search, jobs related to computer science and technology show considerable development potential after the pandemic.
In their discussions on the talk show “Ride the wave of emerging job opportunities in the digital era,” seeing the developments in the labor market and recruitment trends in recent years, experts assessed that computer science and technology aren’t just temporary trends and will develop sustainably in the future.
Furthermore, Mrs. Ngo Thi Ngoc Lan – Navigos Search North Regional Director; Mr. Chris Jeffery – BUV Chief Academic Officer; and Mr. Fraser Harrison – Lecturer of Computer Science and Technology at BUV also presented the requirements on knowledge and skills, as well as solutions for students and young workers to adapt to their working environments in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
Job trends after the pandemic
According to Mr. Chris Jeffery, COVID-19 has heavily affected countries across the world. Thus, this scenario divides workers into 2 groups. The first group includes workers capable of working from home, whose numbers are increasing significantly. On the other hand, the second group includes workers in the manufacturing and services industries, who have faced numerous difficulties and decreased income, resulting in an increasing poverty rate.
“However, a part of the workforce has seized this opportunity to improve their skill sets amid the pandemic to prepare themselves for the 4.0 economy, which is something that the government and Vietnamese businesses are aiming towards, ” he added.
According to Mrs. Ngo Thi Ngoc Lan’s deeper analysis of the domestic labor market, similar to many countries in the world, industries such as aviation, tourism, restaurants, traditional retail, and manufacturing have sustained serious impacts since 2020. However, technology-related jobs, especially computer science or data science, have grown amid the pandemic. Accordingly, in finance and banking, there has been a significant increase in the demand for information technology-related positions. This plays a part in the aim of banks to rapidly develop in their race for digitalization.
Previously, Navigos Search conducted an analysis of manpower in the information technology industry over the 2010-2020 period, in which results showed that the recruitment demand for this industry in Vietnam has quadrupled. Accordingly, positions or jobs that have intensive development requirements include industries related to software development, technical support, project-product management, user experience/user interface (UX/UI) design, quality control/quality assurance (QC/QA), and data science.
In 2020, the recruitment demand for information technology positions will continue to increase. “We predict that in 2021, the recruitment demand for these industries will still increase by 25% compared to 2020,” added Navigos Search Northern Regional Director.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job opportunities in the fields of computers and information technology (IT) are expected to increase by 11% from 2019 to 2029, a much quicker pace than the average for other fields.
According to Mr. Fraser Harrison, the fields of Computer Science and Technology are very broad and include many different minors. BUV offers specialized curricula for various majors, including Computer Science – Cyber security and cloud technologies, Computer Games Design and Programming. In fact, these industries all have higher growth rates than the 11% figure from the US BLS.
The Cyber security industry’s growth was projected at 33% from 2020 to 2030. Today, in Computer Science and Technology, this is one of the fastest-growing industries. Cloud technologies’ projected growth is slightly slower at 13%, but still higher than industry-wide projections. For Computer Games Design and Programming, the current growth forecast is 22% over the same period. In 2021 alone, USD 56.9 billion has been poured into the game design industry in the US, more than the music and movie industries combined.
Therefore, students and young workers need to prepare themselves with both knowledge and skills to adapt to the changing labor market after the pandemic.
Necessary skills for students in the digital era
After conducting surveys at domestic and foreign enterprises, Ms. Ngo Thi Ngoc Lan presented 4 basic skills that young people need to focus on: active learning; knowledge on information technology; management of themselves and others; and critical thinking. Accompanying these basic skills are foreign language skills. This is an important factor in active learning.
In addition, they also need to work on more complex skills such as teamwork, human resources management, emotional intelligence, assessment, and decision making, and problem-solving.
Specifically, in computer science and information technology, Mr. Fraser considered a solid foundation and understanding of the basics of technology as one of the important factors in working in Computer Science, in general, and in cloud technologies, Cyber Security, Computer Games Design and Programming, in particular, because these fields are always changing on a daily basis.
“You willlearn and follow the latest and most common methods in many other fields and majors. Computer science, however, will provide a solid background and basic understanding and will bring much greater value.” he affirmed.
According to Mr. Fraser, to adapt to the changes in the digital age in teaching, BUV lecturers always focus on explaining to students the reason behind each step in their work, instead of simply telling them how to do it. The lectures also closely link basic knowledge and understanding of the common trends and techniques in the industry.
Additionally, most of the work in information technology will revolve around solving problems presented at different levels. Therefore, the sharpening of critical and analytical thinking will give students a clear edge in their learning as well as working in this field.
Adapting to changes in the digital age needs to be fast and appropriate
Mr. Chris Jeffery, BUV Chief Academic Officer, affirmed that universities need to excel in understanding the market and updating their majors and curricula as these factors directly affect young people’s futures. “Adaptation must be fast but also appropriate.”, he emphasized.
Regarding BUV, the university has implemented majors such as Computer Games Design and Programming; Computer Science – Cyber Security and Cloud Technologies to provide students with tools and academic skills and knowledge, thereby enabling them to develop themselves, adapt to their working environments, and generate value for organizations where they work. Apart from international degrees, these are the factors that employers will continue to look for in their future applicants.
At the same time, BUV also provides students with basic skills that are prioritized by employers, including the ability to work in multicultural groups and the ability to work online, especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic. He elaborated, “These basic skills will assist BUV students in their work and contribution from the very first days of joining an organization”.
Mr. Chris Jeffery affirmed that the flexible working trend will remain even after the pandemic fades away. People will return to their offices, but the demand and requirements for working online will continue to increase in some fields due to the nature of the work, allowing workers to work anywhere in the world. Geographical barriers will no longer exist, especially in fields that utilize computer science and technology.
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