Top 10 Questions about Hiring Foreign Workers in Vietnam

Talking about recruitment in Vietnam, hiring foreign workers may be necessary to support your business growth in Vietnam. Here are top 10 questions to know.

With one of the world’s youngest employee demographics and a rise in qualified skills and education infrastructure Vietnam is firmly placing itself as a viable location for business expansion out of usual spots like China. Due to the fact that there is still a lack of skills needed, especially for high-tech industries, there remains plenty of demand to hire foreign workers in the country. This is a 10 part guide answering common questions regarding this matter.

Read About Cekindo’s Recruitment Services in Vietnam

Cekindo has compiled a list of the most popular questions related to recruitment in Vietnam, particularly on hiring foreign workers. Read on for essential information on recruitment, work permit, requirements and more.

Foreign Recruitment in Vietnam: Top 10 Questions

1. Is there any ratio of foreign to local employees required under Vietnamese Labour Law?

No, there is not any. However, foreigners are not allowed to hold every position in the company.

2. Are foreign employees allowed for any kind of titles or positions in the company?

No. As a business owner, you can only recruit foreign nationals to fill positions of certain skills. You need to prove that you cannot find any locals in Vietnam that meet the criteria to fill those positions.

In other words, you cannot employ a foreigner in Vietnam to fill a job that can be done by locals.

That being said, for middle-management and top-management positions, there are very few restrictions related to foreign employment.

RELATED: Employing Local & Foreign Employees in Vietnam

3. So what are the specific skills that are currently lacking in the job market in Vietnam and require foreign employment?

Here are some specific skills that are favored by the government:

  • Foreigners with good language mastery, especially in English
  • Foreigners with IT, digital skills, or skills that are in shortage in Vietnam
  • Tech jobs related to Blockchain Technology and Fintech
  • Foreigners with international experience and exposure

4. What does a company have to do to hire a foreign employee?

You will need to submit a foreign labor use report along with your reason for hiring a foreigner. The report is required to be submitted 30 days before the commencement of work.

5. What kind of permit or visa that a foreigner needs to be employed or start a business in Vietnam?

There are two permits that a foreigner needs to stay and work legally in Vietnam:

6. What are the validity of a business visa, a work permit and a resident card?

  • Business visa: maximum 12 months
  • Work permit: 24 months
  • Resident card: 24 months

7. What are the requirements for each type of permit or visa?

Business Visa

  • Required for employment that lasts for fewer than 3 months in Vietnam
  • Suitable for business partners or employers in Vietnam
  • An invitation letter or sponsorship letter is compulsory

Work Permit

  • Can be renewed once it has expired
  • For employment of more than 3 months
  • Applicant needs to have the qualifications of higher education and enough work experience in a related field
  • Minimum 3-year work experience for managerial position
  • Minimum 1-year work experience for director position

Resident Card (Residence Permit)

  • Given that you have already got a work permit, only then you can apply for a temporary residence permit
  • Can be applied after the receipt of a work permit
  • Same validity as the work permit

8. Do investors need a work permit?

No, they do not. As long as they are not a director or an employee of a company, foreign investors do not need any work permit.

9. What is the processing time to obtain a work permit in Vietnam?

Generally, it takes roughly 15-30 days for the entire process.

10. What are the documents required for a work permit application?

You need the following documents to apply for a work permit:

  • Application form
  • Certificate of medical examination
  • Certificate of work experience
  • A certified copy of foreigner’s passport
  • Certificate of criminal record

Related article: Insider Tips on Foreign Employment in Vietnam



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Verified by:​

Hien Le

Hien is a Manager of the Human Resources Department at our office in Vietnam. She has more than 15 years of experience in all spectrums of Human Resources including Global Mobility and Office Management.

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