- Investment reflects commitment in Malaysia’s vision to be leading digital economy
- Strong partnership with MDEC has helped DHL overcome talent issues
FROM its humble beginnings in an unfashionable mall in 1997, where it was actually located above an indoor carousell, DHL IT Services Data Centre Cyberjaya, has grown over the past two decades to become one of the key pillars driving the growth and performance of global logistics leader, Deutsche Post DHL Group.
Headcount has grown as well, from 120 in 1997 to 360 in 2007 and 1,440 in 2017 with 500 of that talent pool being Malaysian fresh graduates who have been trained and developed to be part of a mini United Nations team with staff coming from 27 nationalities.
The youngish team, with an average age of 36, are tasked with the responsibility for the design, development, implementation and the service delivery management of its IT solutions worldwide to 220 countries. It is a responsibility it shares with its twin centre located in Prague, Czech Republic.
In a testament to the increasing role IT plays in driving business performance and delivering superior customer experience, Alexander Pilař, executive vice president and managing director, IT Services, Deutsche Post DHL Group acknowledged the role of the group’s IT arm.
“Digitalization plays an increasingly strategic role in helping global logistics networks achieve the speed, reliability and accuracy needed to keep pace with today’s demands.”
DHL’s strong growth where it reported record profit in 2016 and said its fourth-quarter EBIT of €1.111 billion (RM5.4 billion) was “the best quarterly result in company history” will be yet another driver for the company to rely on IT to help meet customer expectations.
Pilar was in town to announce that, over and above the total investments already made valued at US$1.14 billion (RM4.7 billion), DHL was doubling down on its Malaysian IT operations with an additional investment of RM1.4 billion – spread over three years to 2020.
The investments will be made in the area of talent development, info security and infrastructure through platform renewals and technical innovations, including adoption of hybrid cloud, and higher-efficiency or renewable energy sources.
Pilar describes the investments as a demonstration of DHL’s commitment towards enhancing its capabilities with best-in-class IT infrastructure and skilled talent that translates to better performance and service for customers.
Being one of the pioneer companies to get MSC Malaysia status, Yogananthan S, site head of IT Services Cyberjaya, and VP business relations for IT Services, Asia Pacific, Deutsche Post DHL Group, also frames the new investments as a continuation of DHL’s commitment and belief in Malaysia’s own vision to be a leading digital economy.
“The vision of the country is good and we will continue to stay here.”
DHL has also enjoyed a strong partnership with the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) over the years with Yoganathan recalling how MDEC helped them through the one main concern they had which was about the quality of the graduates coming out.
“With MDEC’s help, we have worked closely with some institutions of higher learning and given them feedback on their curriculum to ensure its relevance.”
Besides the talent issue, DHL has had no major pain points in its experience in Cyberjaya. “The quality of the connectivity has kept pace with our needs and in terms of bandwidth costs, as a global company with scale, we are able to get competitive pricing here.”
Emphasising on the talent issue, Ng Wan Peng, MDEC’s chief operating officer, highlights the recent initiative in August with the announcement of Premier Digital Institutions of Higher Learning which will work hand in hand with companies like DHL to ensure they produce the right talent for industry needs. “We will continue to work on necessary strategies to support the growth of companies in our Global Business Services cluster.”