Challenges to Hiring and Retaining Managers in Thailand

November 9, 20158:32 am1894 views

Mid-level managers in Thailand are viewed as having good professional skills, high sense of responsibility and high adaptability. One of the most important factors in recruiting mid-level and senior managers for foreign companies in Thailand is the need for working experience in a similar field.

Based on a series of comparative surveys in Japan, Singapore and Vietnam, en world Thailand (formerly Top Talent Asia), a leading recruitment agency specializing in connecting great companies to the best managers and mid-career professionals in Thailand, published a regional report on “Challenges in recruiting and retaining mid-level and senior employees for foreign firms in Thailand.

Key findings as per the report in hiring and retaining managers in foreign MNCs in Thailand are as indicated below:

Shortage of mid-level candidates in terms of both quantity and quality

52% of respondents surveyed in Thailand say that they have not been able to look for enough mid-level and senior Thai employees for their firms over the last 12 months.

This is a “hard-to-solve problem” not only in Thailand but also in Singapore and Vietnam with 53% and 41% respondents, respectively, saying it is difficult for them to recruit enough talents.

Apart from the lack of quantity, Thai candidates have not completely satisfied employers’ requirements. In particular, 54% of the respondents say that Thai candidates still lack technical skills. It is followed by leadership skill and management skill complained by 50% and 34% respondents, respectively.

84% of the respondents believe that the biggest challenge in retaining managers is fierce competition in terms of salary and benefits from industry peers. Regionally, Singapore (82% respondents) and Vietnam (56% respondents) also face the same challenge in retaining managerial candidates.

See: Demand for HR Talent Continues to be Low in South East Asia

Strengths and weaknesses of mid-level personnel in Thailand

Findings from the survey indicate that mid-level and senior personnel in each country have their own unique strengths and weaknesses.

While managers in Japan and Thailand are perceived to have very high self-motivation, managers in Vietnam and Singapore seem to share the same strength of being hardworking and eager to learn new things.

Managers in Thailand, Japan and Vietnam are highly praised for their communication skills.

Training remains the best solution

All of the four countries surveyed choose to include leadership and management skills in the training programs for their firms’ managerial personnel.

Among the surveyed respondents, 78% in Singapore, 74% in Thailand, 60% in Japan, and 48% in Vietnam answer that this will be the main area of training for management staff.

“Train the trainer” helps make “learning by doing under supervision” a more effective model as 90% respondents in Singapore, 82% in Thailand and 57% in Vietnam claim that this is the prevalent model in their firms.

According to survey data, Singapore is the only country that puts financial support (co-sponsorship) for self-development in the top 3 most popular training models for managers.

Based on the surveyed results in Thailand and three other countries, Belinda Skinner, Country Manager of en world Thailand said: “In Thailand, one of the strongest issues was cultural fit. Thailand is an emerging market, with many strong multinational companies operating here. Our consultants at en world Thailand are highly trained to act as a consultant, not just a recruiter. One of our main focal points is to match the company’s cultural and environment fit to the potential candidates.”.

Also read: Employers in Asia Should Redefine Talent to Bridge the Skills Gap

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