Just after Tet vacation ended, Nguyen Viet Linh, 21, rushed to the Job Promotion Centre in Hanoi just as it opened in search of career opportunities.

Linh, who graduated from the University of Social Sciences and Humanities, wanted a simple, stable office position.

"I dropped by some consulting tables to get opportunities and experiences, with the hope that I could meet employer demand," Linh said.

However, the jobs weren't what she was looking for. She found a gap between what employers demanded and what she could offer.

Many university graduates are looking for jobs, but a limited number of such high-skilled positions are available, said Vu Thi Thanh Lieu, head of the Hanoi Job Promotion Centre's Labour Information Department. In contrast, the need for mechanics and manual labourers is quite high.

Lieu said that due to the lack of manual workers while the demand is high, many employees with university and college education had to accept manual labour jobs. She also said her centre's rate of successful connections between enterprises and employees is a low 30 percent.

Chu Thu Thao, a personnel manager at the Trung Tin Import-Export Company, said the centre is focusing on recruiting manual labour, sales and marketing, and some technical jobs.

"Many applicants come to the centre lacking soft skills and the ability to work," she said.

Dang Duy Tien, a personnel staff member at the construction material producer Javta Company, said he agrees that enterprises are demanding different types of jobs from what applicants are offering.

"As my company deals with production, we only need manual workers," he said. "However, the applications we received were mostly for high skilled jobs."

Tao Bang Huy, deputy head of the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs' Employment Department, said the phenomena came from the city's lack of a labour demand and supply database.

"The Hanoi Job Promotion Centre should build such a database for the labour market soon, and work with training firms, enterprises and localities," he said.

Lieu said the centre will work with enterprises to organise talks and forums for employees to learn about jobs and skills, to shorten the gap between supply and demand in the market.

"The centre will open mobile promotion centres across the city soon, and connect with centres from other cities and provinces," she said.-VNA