“At FPT Software, our people are our most valuable asset”, said FPT Software Chairwoman, Chu Thi Thanh Ha in our latest feature interview, where she shared her thoughts on the business challenges amid COVID-19 and how the company has responded to them with unity, compassion, and creativity.
Due to COVID-19, companies around the world have to cut down on staffing as well as suspend their operations. How about FPT Software?
COVID-19 has exerted negative impacts on so many businesses, and FPT Software is of no exception, especially when we have customers and offices located all around the world.
Many of our employees in overseas markets like Japan, North America, or Europe have been working from home. And most of our customers have prepared themselves for the long battle against COVID-19; some in Japan have already extended their remote working plan to 2021. Given this situation, FPT Software is closely monitoring the situation in each local area, each country that we are operating in, to be able to maintain our business resilience as well as helping our customers to achieve the same thing.
FPT Software business activities involve a lot of travelling between different countries. With social distancing order and fight restriction ordered in place, how has your company dealt with these difficulties?
The biggest challenge for FPT Software is that we cannot travel abroad to meet our clients or cannot send our people to work onsite. But we have come up with so many ideas to take our business from offline to online amid this “new normal”.
In the past few months, FPT Software has successfully organized 11 webinars for overseas markets. This is our new way of doing business. It’s a combination of our technology capabilities, our readiness for change, as well as the efforts from our domestics and overseas business units that help us host these webinars for hundreds of participants worldwide. These webinars’ successes represent FPT Software’s unity, creativity, and determination to overcome challenges.
Since this May, FPT Software has hosted 11 webinars with speakers and attendees from various countries
To foster good relationships within the company as well as with our customers, we also came up with a lot of interesting ideas. For example, our team in Japan even proposed online “drinking parties” with customers. Or to celebrate FPT Software Da Nang 15th birthday, we also hosted the first-ever online birthday party with 3,000 participants around the world tuning in and raising their toast to our colleagues in Da Nang, Vietnam’s new epicentre of COVID-19.
Last week, FPT Software hosted an online birthday party to celebrate its Da Nang branch’s 15th birthday
In delivery activities, to ensure the confidentiality of some projects while complying with the government’s social distancing orders, our employees have proposed working in shift. The first shift is from 6 am to 2 pm, and the second shift is from 2 pm to 8-9 pm.
I am very glad that these creative ideas have strengthened our business resilience to transition our operations to the “new normal” world.
When you took office as FPT Software chairwoman, you said your goal was to build the company into an organisation of compassion. So, how has compassion manifested during this difficult time?
At FPT Software, our people are our most valuable asset. As a company of 16-17,000 employees, our top priority in the “new normal” is to protect them.
As travelling becomes more difficult, some of our on-site employees cannot return to Vietnam, others cannot travel between offices. But FPT Software is doing everything we can to help them, and to make sure that they are not lonely as the world is in lockdown.
So far, we have arranged four “rescue flights” to bring our employees and their families as well as our clients from Japan and America back to Vietnam. These flights required a lot of preparation, especially in logistics, medical, and quarantine procedures. But they are also testaments to our solidarity and sincere interest in our people. I was touched to see our employees reuniting with their families after months of being stuck in a foreign country.
The rescue flights from Japan and USA have brought hundreds of people back to Vietnam
During the pandemic, FPT Software has taken every measure possible to safeguard our employees’ wellbeing, such as providing free facemasks or disinfecting our offices frequently. But I hope that each and everyone at FPT Software understands that this a long-haul battle and to be well-prepared to protect themselves and their loved ones.
You have mentioned that COVID-19 might last for another 1-2 years, and we needed to accept that never normal would be the new normal. Given this situation, do you have any advice on how to remain productive while working from home?
I must admit that working from home can be inconvenient. Although FPT Software has regularly sent out working-from-home instructions and tips, I think that productivity depends greatly on each person’s self-discipline. I hope that 16,000 FPT Software employees, when working remotely, could be 16,000 working stations, staying just as productive as at the office.
However, it is important that everyone spares some time in their daily life to exercise. For those who are under quarantine, our Communications team even sent them yoga and aerobic exercises so they could work out anytime, anywhere, in spite of their limited living spaces. It helps to make sure that they are mentally and physically healthy, to fight this long-haul battle.