ITviec recently conducted a survey called Developer’s Mini Survey to gauge the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic as a result of the outbreak in May 2021. The purpose of the survey was to understand the employment situation, work performance, and confidence levels in relation to applying and accepting new jobs for developers and other related IT positions.

Preliminary information: 86.54% of respondents were full-time developers, currently working from home and receiving full pay (84.21%). Only a small segment of developers worked in parallel, both at home and at the company (7.89%) and were in the situation of unwanted pay cuts (5.26%).

The minisurvey results reflect the work situation, the difficulties that cause concerns in the developers’ minds and their level of confidence when applying for and taking on new jobs.

You can read Vietnamese version here.

The more comfortable the home-workspace, the more productive the developer is

According to the survey results received by ITviec, most developers are relatively satisfied with their home-workspace environment (7.1/10). And they also master their work performance at an ideal level of 7.3/10 despite the interfering factors (objective and subjective) at home because of the pandemic. When analyzing the performance and workers’ psychology, it is easy to see that these two indicators are quite correlated and have a close relationship that is proportional to each other.

Many surveyed developers share that not having to commute to the office saves them a lot of time to get things done. And because they work from home, they feel comfortable, relieve unnecessary pressures, and be more flexible in allocating their time.

“I feel like I don’t lose time commuting, because every day I have to go for nearly 2 hours, traffic jams are very tiring, while those 2 hours can be spent on other more useful things” – a developer shared.

Another positive signal during the pandemic is that up to 58.82% of developers polled have been vaccinated against COVID-19. The percentage of developers who have been vaccinated at Outsourcing companies is much higher than those in Product companies (70.59% compared to 47.62%). This is also the premise to help developers stabilize psychologically to focus on work.

Besides the positive effects, working from home also brings some significant disadvantages.

Big differences in the obstacles that young developers and senior developers are facing

The young developer segment, defined as developers who have 1-5 years of working experience, is facing the most difficulties due to technical factors (equipment, network connection lines, cybersecurity …), time management and expectation management from the superior levels;

The chart illustrates the biggest difficulties when working from home of young developers

the senior developer team, with 5 – 8 years of experience, agrees that the biggest problem they are facing is the frequency and effectiveness of communicating with the team remotely, as well as mental health issues that arise during social distancing.

The chart illustrates the biggest difficulties when working from home of senior developers

“More focused but less effective communication in the project”, said another senior developer.

From this result, developers in senior positions or even leaders and managers are still quite limited in finding communication options between colleagues, especially when it comes to connecting with young colleagues. Meanwhile, young developers may need more frequent orientation and support to improve their time management, performance management, and expectation management skills from their superiors and customers during this difficult time.

Developers are predicted to apply strongly for jobs after the pandemic, with salary being the most important factor

The majority of developers surveyed shared that in the current precarious period, they are not intending to change jobs. However, if they apply and take on a new job, they are completely confident with their abilities (average index 7.4/10).

Average index of developer confidence when applying for and accepting new jobs during the COVID-19 season

This indicates that the group of potential candidates that employers are looking for are tending to “stand still”. They are only probing the market, but not jumping to stay safe during the difficult season. Once the pandemic is under control, into the “new normal,” the proliferation of quality applications promises to explode again. This is a noteworthy point for employers to strategize for long-term recruitment, based on the context of the pandemic with many unpredictable factors.

Speaking of “The most important factor when choosing a new job”, salary and bonuses are still the top concern by the majority of developers (47.37%) and most expect a new “stop” with a salary increase of 21-30%.

However, this factor is relatively different when comparing between the Product and Outsourcing company sector.

For developers working at Product companies, the requisite factor when finding and choosing a new job is Salary and Bonus (60%). Other factors are also mentioned such as policies, working environment, learning opportunities … but these only account for smaller percentages, and do not affect the decision to find and apply for a new job.

Index of the most important factor for Developer (working at Product company) when deciding to choose a new job at the moment

Meanwhile, at Outsourcing companies, the most important factor when deciding to apply and take on new jobs is the opportunity to develop personally (47.06%), then salary and bonus (35.29%).

Index of the most important factor for Developers (working at Outsourcing company) when deciding to choose a new job at the moment

Developers wish to learn, improve their professional level and participate in many big projects and meet and work with many people. A good superior who can empower the staff is also one of their biggest expectations when deciding to change jobs.

This difference brings a new perspective and shows that not all developers have the same desire and decision to apply. To achieve the highest recruitment efficiency, leaders and recruiters are advised to regularly update trends and “secret desires” from developers, thereby adjusting job postings as well as gradually optimizing employee compensation regimes.

When returning to the new normal, would developers want to work full-time at the office?

According to CBRE Forum Vietnam’s Market Survey 2021 report on predicting the frequency of working at the office under stable conditions, up to 38% of multi-sector companies think that they will organize work at the company according to rate: 1-2 days/month and 1 day/week or less. In other words, employees of these companies will almost be able to work remotely 3-4 days a week or work remotely full-time after the epidemic.

Should employers in the IT industry consider this issue?

The 6.7/10 index is an average that reflects the developers’ expectations of returning to work full-time at the office. Compared with those working at Product companies, who keep the expectations relatively stable (6.9/10), those who work at Outsourcing companies show a higher reluctance to return to their old working reel (full-time at the office) (6.4/10).

Developer’s index of expectations to return to work at a full-time company

Accordingly, in the near future, IT companies, especially Outsourcing companies, may consider applying other forms of enhancing the efficiency and performance of employees and developers such as:
– Consider adding the option of working in the office 1-2 days a week or working remotely full-time
– Allow employees to flexibly choose a working time frame that suits them
– Be more open to the workspace sharing model
– Strengthening green/health safety targets for the working environment
– Support mental health counseling services and programs for employees

In addition, to ensure continuous and effective work, employers are recommended to strengthen communication and connection methods such as messaging, virtual phone calls, working on multiple platforms, and other teamwork tools, etc; and have clear indicators to re-evaluate employee performance.

It can be said that employees in general and developers particularly all have “gains and losses” because of the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic. This mini survey is an effort of ITviec in sharing the messages from developers to the employers and recruiters.

Different from ITviec’s annual surveys, Developer Mini Survey are conducted with the aim of helping developers share their work situations and concerns about their career during a significant period of time, or when there is a big fluctuation. At the same time, IT employers and recruiters can approach and understand more about the thoughts and status of developers (regardless of whether the developers are employees or the candidates they want to recruit). From there, there is a knowledge base to develop a practical action plan to close the gap between IT employers, recruiters and developers, increase the match rate and employment bond in the context of a competitive recruitment market.

The mini survey was conducted on August 20, 2021, with a total of 12 questions and lasted about 5 minutes.

You can view real-time updated survey results here.