January 19, 2022

Building software development teams in Vietnam – challenges

By Magnus Sedlacek

Building software development teams in Vietnam - challenges

We at Ada Beat have long experience working with remote teams and software developers from all over the world and especially with software development teams from Vietnam. In this 4 part series of posts we will share the challenges, benefits, a guide on how to start with remote software development teams from Vietnam and a guide on how to scale remote software development teams from Vietnam.

In this first post we will share the challenges and how to overcome them.

The 3 challenges with a team in Vietnam

1. Time zone difference
2. No native language
3. Distance to the customer

 

Time zone differences

Challenge: Vietnam is 6 to 5 hours ahead of Sweden, depending on the season in Sweden (Summer or Winter/Normal time). This means that the team in Vietnam is not working at the same time as the team/customer in Sweden and questions can not be answered immediately. This can introduce inefficiency in software development.

Solution: Use the mornings in Sweden and the afternoons in Vietnam for communication. Preferably you should utilize video as much as possible when communicating.

No native language

Challenge: In Sweden and Vietnam English is the second language. This will increase communication barriers and can lead to misunderstandings. Because of this team members might hesitate to speak their mind or address issues.

Solution: Make it easier to communicate and thereby easier to ask questions. Have a process for feedback and visualize the work being done.

Distance to the customer

Challenge: As Vietnam is ~8600 kilometers away from Sweden, meeting physically is not an everyday option. The distance introduces difficulties in communicating requirements and can easily become a “whisper game”. With the ongoing lockdowns and restrictions, meeting physically has become even more difficult. However this applies for software development teams in Sweden and elsewhere also.

Solution: Train the team in Vietnam to describe what the requirements are to the customer. This will in the beginning be tedious work, however it will enforce communication and also train the customer to write better requirements as all misunderstandings will become obvious.

Summary

If you look at the solutions above, they really work well with an agile way of working where you have daily meetings, planning, demo and retrospective. To meet the challenges with building software development teams in Vietnam our experience is that an agile way of working is the way to success.

 

Check out the other three parts in this post series
Building software development teams in Vietnam – benefits
Guide on how to start with remote software development teams from Vietnam
Guide on how to scale remote software development teams from Vietnam

If you have any feedback, thoughts or want to know more, feel free to reach out to the author or contact us.

By Magnus Sedlacek

Leader at Ada Beat and host of Func Prog Sweden. Reach out to Magnus on LinkedIn

More from our blog

Ada Beat can now offer senior frontend consultants

Ada Beat can now offer senior frontend consultants

We at Ada Beat are happy to announce that we now have extended our capabilities and offering to also include frontend development.
We can now offer senior consultants within Node.js, React, HTML, CSS and JavaScript on top AWS or GCP.

read more
Welcome to us Phu

Welcome to us Phu

Phu will bring 9 years of experience as software developer in Erlang/OTP on top of Linux. Phu has also trained and mentored other software developers in Erlang and OTP. Phu also comes with experience working in distributed teams and working remote toward Sweden.

read more