Software development in Vietnam, should we do it?
Definitely! They can do it and senior software engineers in Vietnam are known for providing such high quality software products – but everything comes with a cost, and there are things to watch out.
I had a chance to open a software company in Vietnam, worked closely with couple of great talents, pursued couple of a great ideas and projects and eventually learned a lot of good lessons.
1. Vietnam developers responsibility.
Overall, Vietnamese developers have a high sense of responsibility especially when working independently. If you’d ever hired a Vietnamese contractor to work on your project, you know what I’m talking about. They work diligently and wholly committed for the module assignment from beginning until finish line and that’s great!
But what about team work? As a contrary, it is more difficult to form winning team that could provide equally great liability and quality in Vietnam. Reasons may be because of a Vietnam root in culture, or familiar with team dependency in general, or sometimes it’s a challenge to find better team leader to maintain the team heat and spirit.
Whatever reasons, there are fortunately some commodity I did and that worked:
- Build smaller developers team: This is because it is more manageable and team engagement can be distribute much better.
- Put the right person in charge: In a squad team, the leader should take all the responsibility for software development and improvement. Micro-managing should be avoid at all cost
- Communication: Understanding the task requirement and report/contribute can be accost for even very good Vietnam app developers. But this can be solved with adding and separating communication role, eg using business analysts who can work on these issues more effectively.
2. Is deadline a norm with Vietnam developers?
If you ever run a software project, I think chance to repeat this word is very high. And for my personal experience, deadline has been a big issue with Vietnamese engineers.
- Underestimation and perhaps too honest: Some developers I worked with were very honest, and when they estimated something result was often based on tight deadline to impress clients, turned out it’s not. Since a lot of hidden effort hadn’t been taken into account.
- Team communication and dependency: As mentioned, my overall experience was that developers in Vietnam don’t do team well and communication between team members sometimes are not cleared enough to make it work. Each team members are often found not proactively communicated with each other about their reliance and support needs from others therefore more effort could be added for team work.
How to overcome this deadline issue?
- At the top of my head, I often take estimation seriously and add more effort and to be completely honest with my clients.
- Remove team dependency and ownership by rotating tasks and specific duty.
- Better manage smaller milestones and releases.
3. How to build great software team quality in Vietnam?
Very very very tough question and the question is also based on how far do you want to go. My piece of advice here is to be completely specific about your goals to achieve and get it out with already good software companies in Vietnam.
I think in many cases it is better to start working with some freelancers or already working local software firms and then go up from there.
Take all possibilities into account and take them seriously. There are couple of other lessons and advice I can short list based on the brain work I had paid in my past experience:
- Vietnamese are known for family-center culture so when they don’t perform well in some circumstances
- Electricity and flood can be a problem in some cities
- Internet is also another culprit, it needs to be stable and fast otherwise…
- Encouragement and working spirit needs to be maintained and developed always.
- A team of all stars does not guarantee success
- Improve communication and responsibility, take advantages individualism and personal boundness instead of wholly relying on teamwork
Hey, thanks a lot that you have come this far. A lot of truth and challenging isn’t it? But there’s always solution when we know and learn better, and let’s take advantages of the goodness.