What's the technical job market like in Taiwan?


#1

Hi, I just graduated from college and is coming back to Taiwan to work in the IT industry. I was just wondering what the job market is like in Taipei for entry-level techies? I have a non-technical degree, but it is from a prestigious US university. I do have pretty decent technical experience from interning in some big companies in the Silicon Valley. About how much can you expect an entry-level person to get paid? How many hours do people have to work per week? Are local companies crappier to work for than american or european companies? How did you guys go about getting your IT jobs? Thanks!!


#2

I have heard that entry level positions pay between NT$45,000 and NT$70,000 per month. That is with a much lower tax rate. I think it is 9% only after 6 months and 20% in the first 6 months but you get to claim back the money at the end of the fiscal year. Also that is with a minimum of 13 months pay and I have heard of some people getting stock. These are for jobs as technical writers (user manuals) or PR guys talking ot the media, ad copy writing and so on and all of the above.

You can get the jobs by checking the local English dailies. You need to bring along a copy of your degree and proof of related work experience (reccommednation letters) and I think it has total 2 years, but I heard they do not verify it so you if you have to you can manufacture it.

You work 5 days a week, 9-6 with one hour for lunch.

Regarding working for Taiwanese companies, well they traditionally are crappier to work for and it is hit or miss whether they treat foreigners the same, better or worse than the locals.

Send me a MSG via the Oriented members feature and I have a few leads, anyone else interested I have several leads for jobs in Technical companies in the greater Taipei area.


#3

I also need some info. I’ve been discussing a move to Taiwan with my girlfriend that I met in college. Both of us have fairly good reasons why the other should move to our respective countries.

I have been working for the last year as a programmer at a large telephone corporation here in the US. I know that it is highly unlikely that I would find a job, with as many perks as the one I have here, in Taipei–but I still want to test the water. I see hundreds of posts on this site about teaching english, but frankly that is my last resort (no offense to anyone, but it is not my field). I was thinking about teaching for a year and maybe find it easier to get into my field, but a year is valuable experience in the IT industry.

My question is, what are the odds that I can find a job as a programmer in Taipei (any job, even one where I can stick it out for a while and use it as a stepping stone). I’m sure my chances can’t be that good, since I don’t know very much Mandarin, and no Taiwanese. But I still am hoping that I may get lucky (if I decide to go through with this).

The programming knowledge I have involves mainly Java (EJB, IDL, CORBA), C/C++, Visual Basic, database, etc. All of the above, I use or have used, hands on, at work. The position I would be looking for would be entry level, or maybe higher, depending on the company. I’m really having a hard time finding anything on the Internet.

Anyone who may have some leads, advice, or Internet sites, please let me know.

Thank you,

-Jason.


#4

I am looking for technical writers - mainly computer user’s manuals. If that interests you, message me.


#5

Hobart, entry level position pay between NT$45,000 and NT$70,000 per month, is, I think, too optimistic. From people I have been talking with, senior software engineers in Taiwan are getting about NT$50,000 to NT$60,000 per month. Local college graduates would be happy to be getting NT$30,000 to NT$40,000 for their first job. People are saying that American companies are paying more, and I agree, but I think as more graduates return to Taiwan IT market, this adventage is disappearing fast. There is no comparison between the pay in US and Taiwan.
Aceman, one more thing you should look out for is that, in order to apply for work permit in Taiwan, you have to have 2+ years of related working experiences (in your case IT work) if you just have BA/BS degree.


#6

Sursino,

It has been my experience that foriegners make more than locals based on their special native language skills for one.

Also, they have to pay more to pull them away from English teaching, lest they have no native language speakers that want to work for them.

Hobart


#7

The 45K-70K range is right, but as Hobart says it is for the purpose of using your English skills. It is very rare that a Taiwanese company will hire a foreigner to do technical, but non-English-related work, and then pay them within this range.

And why do most of these jobs cap in the 60Ks? Because that is all the value that a foriener presents: doing English “stuff.” And this is why a foreinger’s past experience and education mean very little in getting the job, and why you’d get 70K versus 45K is also unrelated with your qualifications. It has more to do with the type of company, how big and famous the company is and how desperate they are.

Bigger companies like Acer tend to pay starting 45K. Smaller companies, like mom-and-pop tech tend to pay closer to 60K because they don’t have a name and it is harder to attract people.

In general, Taiwanese don’t look at foreigners as valuable assests to the company (well, they don’t look at locals as that either ). If you are a white collar worker in the tech industry, you are still considered a “foreigner worker,” looked down on as a disposable servant/slave of sorts:

  • Thais come to do manual labor work.
  • Filippinos come to do house/plantation work.
  • Americans/Commonwealthers/Europeans come to do English work.

I could go into this theory in great detail, but for those who have several years in the tech industry should know this by heart.