Since its establishment in 2014, GEM has gradually obtained its reputation as one of Vietnam’s most trusted IT outsourcing companies. In celebration of its 8th birthday, Mr. Ngo Khanh Hoang – CEO of GEM – shared his thoughts on the journey that the company has gone through before talking about his future plans and ambitions.
After 8 years, in your opinion, what are the most memorable milestones of GEM Corporation?
Hoang: I would say there are three of them – three milestones that were important to drive us ahead.
The first one is GEM’s establishment – at that time, our team consisted of only 30 people. Our first project was developing a mobile-based ERP solution. Our clients were extremely supportive. They were willing to provide enormous assistance and work closely with us. This project also allowed us to gain more insights into a new field of solution development. We were very enthusiastic about working and exploring, and many of our initial team members have now become very successful in other companies.
The second one is when we started working with large corporations in Singapore. These major opportunities leveraged our delivery capability significantly. We became familiar with how strict the demands from our customers could be. In addition, for the first time, we learned about the importance of risk management in delivery projects and business continuity management in companies’ sustainable development.
Last but not least, we reached another milestone when we started partnering with Japanese businesses. We learned a lot from our Japanese clients about delivery requirements and work etiquette. We also learned the importance of a solid, long-term philosophy that guides a company, defines its business strategies, and shapes the culture of its people.
Reaching the milestone of 8 years of formation and development, GEM has a significant turning point this year – moving to a significantly larger and better-equipped office.
How does the latest office relocation impact and align with the company’s vision?
Hoang: First of all, office relocation is one of GEM’s first movements to prepare for its long-term business strategy. For the next 3-5 years, the company’s competency and human capital will be the two main development objectives. A new office with advanced equipment and a professional environment will promisingly be a premise to achieve these goals.
I believe that environment is one of the most important factors in motivating people in their work. A professional workplace will result in highly competent, respectful, mature, and accountable staff working towards a common goal. Moreover, a fully-equipped infrastructure is a favorable condition to foster everyone’s well-being, creativity, and productivity.
Upgrading our workplace to a more professional level also has an impact on customer relationships and trust. One of our customer segmentation is large corporations. They have already standardized their workflow and had a well-invested infrastructure as well as professional staff. Keeping this in mind, they obviously would want to collaborate with a partner who also delivers the same standard. Improving the workplace, which contributes to enhancing employees’ working manners, will create a professional image of GEM in our partners’ impression. Therefore, it will enhance customer trust and positively influence our reputation.
With all the changes GEM has undergone recently – moving to a new office, adopting a new organizational structure, and planning for future headcount growth, what are the motivations behind them?
Hoang: One truth we have to face is that we, as an outsourcing company, have not earned the same level of trust that an in-house team can provide. So, as the CEO of GEM, I was urged by two questions to initiate and make these changes.
First, how can we create a favorable working environment where our employees can fully realize their potential and collaborate effectively? Therefore, it can be said that our employees have driven us to this decision. Thanks to them, GEM now occupies a modern and spacious office.
Second, how can we improve our capability as a professional IT service provider? I have to admit to the fact that GEM’s current performance has not met our expectations.
Our ambition is to be a reputational outsourcing company that offers excellent service for our customers and contributes to the overall advancement of Vietnam’s IT industry. To fulfill these plans, making major changes to our operations is essential.
Can you tell us more about your expectations for GEM’s future development?
Hoang: My goal is to enhance GEM’s consulting capability. Quantitatively, we aim to increase the percentage of consultancy services to 30% – 50% of our total projects.
In my opinion, a major weakness of IT outsourcing companies is insufficient domain knowledge. Focusing on improving our consultancy services can address this issue. Also, by doing this, we can contribute to the digitalization of companies and add meaningful value to the IT industry as a whole.
A new phase of GEM’s journey means more ambitious goals and outlooks, yet it certainly also will bring more challenges. With the motto “Leading the change”, GEM aims to achieve even greater heights as a united and competent community.