These Startup Job Trends Are Prevalent In South East Asia

In terms of jobs roles available, technical roles are most in demand with higher remuneration

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Correspondent
3 min read

In the past few years, South East Asia (SEA), which is considered to supply agricultural stock to the world, has emerged as a strong market and solution provider in the world of tech. Though silicon valley is still considered to be the nest of billion dollar tech companies, countries in SEA have turned quite a lot of heads.

Countries such as Singapore, Vietnam and Indonesia have made their mark in the tech world and have even attracted the majority of the global tech companies to set up their bases in these countries.

In a report, The Southeast Asia Tech Talent Compensation, produced by Monk’s Hill Ventures and Glints which covered the data trends in building new teams and attracting startup talent, it was found that tech giants from the US and China are expanding in SEA and driving base salaries up.

The  covers more than 1,000 data points for tech startup talent and interviews with over 20 founders across Singapore, Indonesia and Vietnam.

The report underlines that there is a talent crunch regionally, particularly in Singapore, for engineering and product manager roles. 

US and China tech companies entering the region including TikTok, Tencent, Alibaba and Zoom  are likely to pay above-market rates for tech talent or, in some cases, write blank checks for high performers, the report  added. 

Pointing to an interesting trend, the report highlighted that fewer than 32 per cent of participants reported being compensated in equity and some founders are spending time educating their teams on the benefits of equity. 

In terms of jobs roles available, technical roles are most in demand with remuneration. Technical roles such as product, data science and engineering earned 54 per cent more than non-technical roles such as marketing , operation sales, and finance. It was even pointed that the difference in base salary between product and data science roles over non-technical roles were 1 to 2 times higher than for engineering.  

In Vietnam, salary differences for senior roles relative to junior roles were the highest in Vietnam for both tech and non-tech talent in comparison to other two countries, suggesting strong potential for upward salary growth within the Vietnamese tech sector.

The year 2020 saw a majority of us working from home, to protect us and our loved ones from the contagious virus. Even today, as per the report most founders continue to implement staggered work schedules in the office or 100 per cent work from home policies. 

Another emerging trend that was observed was apart from big tech companies, some startups are now offering annual wage supplements (AWS), bonuses, restricted stock units (RSU), or employee stock ownership plans (ESOP).

It was also observed that due to varied salary structure across SEA, some startups are inculcating shifting towards a strategy of regionally distributed teams, to take the most of skill sets and compensation benchmarks across the region. 

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