Hard to find work in Taiwan


#21

Hi Guys, I am a bit new here, I just want to know, in newspaper I should be looking for Classifieds.
I am from India, Just arrived in Taiwan in February, I am here to study Mandarin from Chan Yuan Christian University in Zongli District, I stay in Taoyuan.
I am here, because my future wife is Taiwanese, I am trying to do the basic homework about the culture and working environment of Taiwan.
From the blog itself I knew that minimum work experienced required is 2 years, well I have 8 years in Networking, Operation Management\Incident Management (in IT).
After reading several responses on this blog relating to work culture in Taiwan, I will say India is every bit same like Taiwan, yes but we do have career advancements.
No doubt keeping in mind everything I want to be here with my Wife, so accepting everything…
Can anybody help me please… :slight_smile:


#22

In case you’re wondering, the word “Council” in the name does not mean it’s an activist group. It’s the government organ that was later renamed the Ministry of Labor.


#23

[quote=“athadani”]Hi Guys, I am a bit new here, I just want to know, in newspaper I should be looking for Classifieds.
I am from India, Just arrived in Taiwan in February, I am here to study Mandarin from Chan Yuan Christian University in Zongli District, I stay in Taoyuan.
I am here, because my future wife is Taiwanese, I am trying to do the basic homework about the culture and working environment of Taiwan.
From the blog itself I knew that minimum work experienced required is 2 years, well I have 8 years in Networking, Operation Management\Incident Management (in IT).
After reading several responses on this blog relating to work culture in Taiwan, I will say India is every bit same like Taiwan, yes but we do have career advancements.
No doubt keeping in mind everything I want to be here with my Wife, so accepting everything…
Can anybody help me please… :slight_smile:[/quote]

Get your resume translated into Chinese also. Put it on 1111 and 104 job websites. Get your ARC through marriage as soon as possible so you have open work rights. Maybe marry in civil office first (I did) and have the ceremony later.


#24

[quote=“OrangeOrganics”]I have worked in Hong Kong. Taiwanese working hours are longer, Taiwanese bosses are worse, Taiwanese companies have less benefits and are stricter, Taiwanese companies have less vacation, Taiwanese companies have less space for development, Taiwanese companies are more petty and less international.

Im not sure what your definition is. Taiwan has its plus points, but dont think you will be getting a better quality or working life here. Honestly[/quote]

I concur. I have worked in the US, Hong Kong and Taiwan, aside from my ol country of origin. Not only is the working environment in Taiwan the most deficient in most aspects, but also it keeps getting worse. Trust someone who has been here almost 20 years. Ask other veterans. We look and feel as if we have been to war.

The only way to make it is to be your own boss but that also carries its own set of aggravations.

Why do we stay, you say? People have their different reasons, but the money/work satisfaction ain’t among them. Family, the kids, learning Chinese…maybe. But there is a breaking point.

8 hour day/40h week :roflmao: Labor laws :roflmao: :roflmao:


#25

15 year veteran here…refuse to work for Taiwanese companies now due to poor work conditions, lies and bad pay. Working for a multinational is way better but no nirvana either. Even if you have to deal with the backbiting and paranoia you get paid on time and no bullshit.

forumosa.com/taiwan/viewtopi … k&start=20

By the way, I still think it’s easy to find a JOB in Taiwan. Even for a foreigner! The problem is it’s hard to find a GOOD JOB.


#26

Multinationals and local companies are generally all the same in Taiwan. A multinational may be superior in some ways but then your experience still depends upon your direct report, many who, despite a friendly demeanor, seem to exist to make peoples lives miserable. I often compare it to going to local high school, except I am already in my 40’s.


#27

Having gone through all the comments made on this post, I would love to take the opportunity to share my experience in front of everyone here (specifically, the OP). Some initial background, been in Taiwan for nearly 5 years, came here for my masters in Computer Science and after graduating, I started working.

I have been working for close to 3 years in Taiwan and fortunately, My experience in the 2 companies I have worked has been positive and my current job is in a well-known organisation located near the science park in Hsinchu.

I am a software engineer, specifically Mobile developer who works on iOS/Android platform. My first company was in New Taipei city and honestly, I do admit to the fact that I undercut myself on the salary front (I was paid 42k ). However looking at the bright side of it, in the 1.5 years there I never remember a day when I worked over 9 hours. It was a fixed 9-6 job and often I would myself being ideal with nothing to do even before 6.
Let’s start with the bad, The first thing which comes to me is that Taiwanese companies(especially small petty ones) lack a global vision (國際觀) and fail to do things with proper planning, Most things are haphazard with virtually no thought about process or a well-defined development model (especially for software). This leads to a lot of trouble, if not in the short term then definitely in the long run. As a software developer, I remember making changes to my app nearly 3-4 times a day for the demo next day. Another thing which always messes up my mind is that how prone Taiwanese are to saying “Yes” and accepting all kind of bullshit thrown to them. However, being the only 老外 , My boss never tried that on me knowing I would never take it.

The good things, I learned a lot. My Chinese level improved loads- I mean loads, from very basic to nearly fluent. I participated in exhibitions all over Asia, met with various clients and made some nice business relationships. Further, My job never affected my personal life since I never needed to work overtime or on the weekends. In fact during my second year, my company even paid for my air ticket back to my home country. And, I got a decent 年終 (2 months). More importantly, working in a small Taiwanese company with some unique/niche product got me a chance to move to a better workplace.

My current workplace is absolutely nothing to what I have read and seen from the people here. Again, I work from 9 to 6 and in case I need to work overtime, I get paid extra. My basic salary is 60,000 nt with nearly a 2 months bonus (not super high, but more than enough for a single person). Everything is in order here with well-established rules and nothing seems haphazard. They helped me apply the work permit and made sure I knew of every rule and regulation, this included knowing my rights as well. I get 14 days off annually, twice the number of most Taiwanese companies.
The bad- well, again I wish there was more planning, our products had concrete specification and everything was done within a well-defined scope. However, these problems are much more exclusive to software as compared to the problems mention above by others.
In my 3 years of work experience, never have I been paid late, never been made to work overtime without overtime pay, never lied or tricked about my salary/bonus. Everything has been transparent, be it joining or leaving, I never felt I was tricked or cheated. In these 3 years, I have learned quite a bit which apart from software development also include sales skills and language skills.

To sum it up, My working experience has been positive apart from some points which arguably you could have in every workplace. There is no job where you could say that you ain’t got nothing wrong, I have learned a lot of things and the problems which I have seen have rather helped me broaden my vision. So, rather than painting everyone with the same brush, I would rather say there are indeed good companies in Taiwan (might be difficult to find and get into) and rather than getting disheartened by others, give your best shot. Try 104,1111,Linkedin (I found my current job using Linkedin ) and go to the individual company’s website, send your resume directly to the HR. Chinese skill+related experience can work wonders for you!! You know your strengths !! 加油 不要放棄了


#28

This is absolutely true. I get the same thing from the client side, so projects drag on twice as long as they ought to and code quality is atrocious.

Not limited to Taiwan, of course, but definitely more noticeable here.


#29

This is absolutely true. I get the same thing from the client side, so projects drag on twice as long as they ought to and code quality is atrocious.

Not limited to Taiwan, of course, but definitely more noticeable here.[/quote]

The funny thing is that most project manager/Senior level staff are fully aware of this, but they are as helpless as we engineers are. For example, in my current job I am working on an app which is basically a govt. based/sponsored project. One week ahead of our launch, the individuals working for the govt. (ministry of information communication) start playing with our app and without giving any consideration to software development, start asking us to add more features and edit the current version. We worked our ass for the last 6 months only to realize that this isn’t what “they” wanted, and “they” do not know/understand how is software made. My manager being a developer himself for 6 years for frustrated but he has no option but to ask us to make the changes. We can’t afford to make the govt. officials unhappy since it is them who are sponsoring and providing money for our project. In my first company, the clients were the one responsible for the mess and again, we were sort of obliged to make the changes. Though, I always make a point of letting my manager know that what they are doing is/are wrong software practices and lead to incomprehensible/non-comprehendible code"


#30

Why is this? I have thought about this problem a lot.

Why at the planninhg stage does everyone want to rush to get things started, not to brainstorm or think anything through? Is it some cultural blip were rushing around in pointless toil is seen as actual work and planning and discussion seen as a waste of time? Or a hangover from toy manufacturing days when Taiwan thrived by being cheaper and faster than elsewhere?

Dunno really.


#31

Regarding orginal point, dont get me wrong, there are decent gigs in Taiwan. But on the whole, the working experience is inferior to what you will find elsewhere and the returns for your toil will be minimal.

Just find a lot of HK and Singaporeans have the false belief that Taiwan is a relaxed place. Outside of work this may be true, Taiwan can be a very nice place to live, especially if you have your own business. If you are looking for Chinese Jamaica, this isnt the place.


#32

[quote=“OrangeOrganics”]Why is this? I have thought about this problem a lot.

Why at the planninhg stage does everyone want to rush to get things started, not to brainstorm or think anything through? Is it some cultural blip were rushing around in pointless toil is seen as actual work and planning and discussion seen as a waste of time? Or a hangover from toy manufacturing days when Taiwan thrived by being cheaper and faster than elsewhere?

Dunno really.[/quote]

My experience is this: nobody in their right mind would attempt to design a car or a bridge with zero experience, but for some obscure reason every man and his dog thinks he can design software. Thus you get salesmen, marketing drones, politicians, or managers (with no engineering background) writing detailed specs for software, and then endlessly fiddling with it when it transpires that they’ve written a load of nonsense. Oh rly, Mr Customer? You want to design the UI yourself, even though you only just found out what “UI” stands for? That’s wonderful. Do tell me about it.

In (say) Europe the engineering team are more likely to have access to the customer, and may educate him towards providing functional requirements (ie., what task does this product have to achieve) rather than slavishly following some half-assed “I want a button here that does this” document. There are also various methodologies for working with the customer to make sure what he thinks he wants is what he actually wants. Or, if he doesn’t have the foggiest idea what he wants, there are methodologies for evolving a prototype with minimum stress. Doesn’t always happen this way, but that’s what the better teams will do.

This almost never happens in Taiwan. They’re more likely to just make a list of whatever brainfarts the customer comes out with, however illogical or internally-inconsistent, and then try and shoehorn it all in. Telling him “that isn’t going to work”, or “that will cost you more than you need to spend” is considered bad manners, although in reality it’s the honest and proper thing to do. It saves everyone a lot of time and heartache.

The engineers are rarely allowed to talk to the customer anyway: more often than not, they’re locked away in a room somewhere while a salesman (who’s been hired because he can speak English with a Californian accent) deals with the requirements capture. Recipe for disaster.

So I suppose to that extent it’s “cultural”. Taiwanese people do that avoiding-conflict thing.


#33

This issue is complicated. The underlings cannot questioon authority, the bosses want blind devotion and hence, anyone who asks questions/argues against the feasibility of a proyect/anything but YES SIR is demoted/ostracized/faces the wrath of the boss.

Hence, we have the prevalence of say, Flash, or software no one can read in no machine known to Man or Woman, simply because the boss says so.

Sometimes bosses may listen. We just had an instance in which we were actually aske dto give feedback. I was concerned as I thought it was a trap a la 'let the thousand flowers bloom". Lo and behold, the boss realized teh argument had logic, and actually asked “why no one had told him so”. Eye roll…


#34

[quote=“finley”][quote=“OrangeOrganics”]Why is this? I have thought about this problem a lot.

Why at the planninhg stage does everyone want to rush to get things started, not to brainstorm or think anything through? Is it some cultural blip were rushing around in pointless toil is seen as actual work and planning and discussion seen as a waste of time? Or a hangover from toy manufacturing days when Taiwan thrived by being cheaper and faster than elsewhere?

Dunno really.[/quote]

My experience is this: nobody in their right mind would attempt to design a car or a bridge with zero experience, but for some obscure reason every man and his dog thinks he can design software. Thus you get salesmen, marketing drones, politicians, or managers (with no engineering background) writing detailed specs for software, and then endlessly fiddling with it when it transpires that they’ve written a load of nonsense. Oh rly, Mr Customer? You want to design the UI yourself, even though you only just found out what “UI” stands for? That’s wonderful. Do tell me about it.

In (say) Europe the engineering team are more likely to have access to the customer, and may educate him towards providing functional requirements (ie., what task does this product have to achieve) rather than slavishly following some half-assed “I want a button here that does this” document. There are also various methodologies for working with the customer to make sure what he thinks he wants is what he actually wants. Or, if he doesn’t have the foggiest idea what he wants, there are methodologies for evolving a prototype with minimum stress. Doesn’t always happen this way, but that’s what the better teams will do.

This almost never happens in Taiwan. They’re more likely to just make a list of whatever brainfarts the customer comes out with, however illogical or internally-inconsistent, and then try and shoehorn it all in. Telling him “that isn’t going to work”, or “that will cost you more than you need to spend” is considered bad manners, although in reality it’s the honest and proper thing to do. It saves everyone a lot of time and heartache.

The engineers are rarely allowed to talk to the customer anyway: more often than not, they’re locked away in a room somewhere while a salesman (who’s been hired because he can speak English with a Californian accent) deals with the requirements capture. Recipe for disaster.

So I suppose to that extent it’s “cultural”. Taiwanese people do that avoiding-conflict thing.[/quote]

Not just ins oftware but also in design, marketing etc. Customers seem completely oblivious to the need to talk through, discuss and properly spec a project.


#35

Don’t forget the massive amount of nepotism and corruption in Taiwan. Mates, relations, political connections, kickbacks. A lot of that Goes on. Not every case, but if there is a big budget involved there will be lots of hands grabbing at the cake.

As for customers not being able to talk through, I had the same issue with vendors when trying to design and source products in Taiwan. Many were not able to communicate properly. It wasn’t the language either. They just couldn’t be straightforward.

Culturally Taiwan is going to find it difficult to react in a time where projects are more complex integrated with software and regulatory requirements and require higher levels of communication skills to deal with distributed teams and cultural backgrounds rather than copying a product that already exists.
His is the case in almost all industries now where you have large teams of people working on projects that achieve breakthroughs, most major scientific breakthroughs involve this kind of model already.


#36

[quote=“madhawan”]
To sum it up, My working experience has been positive apart from some points which arguably you could have in every workplace. There is no job where you could say that you ain’t got nothing wrong, I have learned a lot of things and the problems which I have seen have rather helped me broaden my vision. So, rather than painting everyone with the same brush, I would rather say there are indeed good companies in Taiwan … [/quote]

I was overly negative in my comment. I’ve had great experiences here, experiences I would never have had elsewhere. Some of my bosses and co-workers were truly fantastic. If you can find the right company, it can be a very positive experience for a short period of time.


#37

I also had some great experiences at work and learned a lot…initially. In fact I enjoyed my time working for those small companies quite a lot more than now.

The problem…was the low pay and lack of opportunity for promotion and training/professional education.

I was getting the same pay 60k/mth out of the block in Taiwan in a business job 15 years ago. That’s a huge issue right there. Where do go from these low starting points…70k/mth…80k/mth…the base rate is too low so you lose money over the years even though you feel like you are getting promoted and salary raise.
Then the chance to learn how more ‘international’ companies work might be a bit limited here, how they plan our business strategies or as in the case above …software development. I’ve had to adapt my freewheeling ways learnt in Taiwan to the more rigorous nature and planning methodology of western companies.
I think working in Taiwan may indeed be a good launching point for the entrepreneurial minded who wants to learn a bit of everything and then jump out and do their own thing.


#38

[quote=“headhonchoII”]I also had some great experiences at work and learned a lot…initially. In fact I enjoyed my time working for those small companies quite a lot more than now.

The problem…was the low pay and lack of opportunity for promotion and training/professional education.

I was getting the same pay 60k/mth out of the block in Taiwan in a business job 15 years ago. That’s a huge issue right there. Where do go from these low starting points…70k/mth…80k/mth…the base rate is too low so you lose money over the years even though you feel like you are getting promoted and salary raise.
Then the chance to learn how more ‘international’ companies work might be a bit limited here, how they plan our business strategies or as in the case above …software development. I’ve had to adapt my freewheeling ways learnt in Taiwan to the more rigorous nature and planning methodology of western companies.
I think working in Taiwan may indeed be a good launching point for the entrepreneurial minded who wants to learn a bit of everything and then jump out and do their own thing.[/quote]

I absolutely second you when you say this. Even though my experience luckily has been positive, but by no way and I again highlight, BY NO WAY can I imagine staying forever or making my career entirely based in Taiwan. What I am saying is that, Taiwan has got decent opportunities which you need to go and grab if you really wanna work here. I agree with a lot of things such as internalization is still lacking in Taiwan, practices followed here are old and yes, Personal development can be restricted. I would myself personally love to start something of my own or probably look to go back to my home country. The issue with me is not just salary, The issue is self-development and knowledge/skill enrichment. However, Taiwan isn’t the worst place in the world to work, There are crazy companies here , so are everywhere. Like everyone mentioned, there are also good bosses/managers.

My point was just to point the true fact to the OP and not just let him become all cynical/gloomy over the idea of working here since the response he got were extremely critical and disapproving. Good luck to the OP


#39

Hi Guys,
I am new here in Taiwan, learning mandarin, need to find a part time job, can anyone suggest me some better contact or agencies that i can approach.
I am an Indian, so no problem with English, I can do any kind of part time job which doesn’t require conversation in mandarin, I am flexible with working hours in evening, can work in Boys hostels or hotel in background staff, or in a mall, or I can do computer networking (which is my profession).
Please do reply back with suggestions. (I stay in Taoyuan City)


#40

[quote=“headhonchoII”]15 year veteran here…refuse to work for Taiwanese companies now due to poor work conditions, lies and bad pay. Working for a multinational is way better but no nirvana either. Even if you have to deal with the backbiting and paranoia you get paid on time and no bullshit.

forumosa.com/taiwan/viewtopi … k&start=20

By the way, I still think it’s easy to find a JOB in Taiwan. Even for a foreigner! The problem is it’s hard to find a GOOD JOB.[/quote]

Hmmmm !
Shall take it in mind !
But still yea, maybe you are right,plenty of jobs but a good one is really hard to find.