Saturday, April 19, 2008

IBM ASEAN Regional Contact Center Reaffirms Malaysia as Global Shared Services Hub

IBM officially launches its new Cyberjaya premises
L-R: Ong Hoon Meng, General Manager, IBM ASEAN; Datuk Dr Maximus Ongkili, Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation Minister; and Ou Shian Waei, Managing Director, IBM Malaysia Sdn Bhd at the opening ceremony of IBM ASEAN Regional Contact Center new building in Cyberjaya.

PETALING JAYA, Malaysia, 18 April 2008 – IBM today officially opened its ASEAN Regional Contact Center’s (RCC) built-to-fit premises in Cyberjaya, Malaysia. The new facility enables the center to provide more advanced and efficient post-sale integrated technical frontline services, pre-sale technical support and strategic outsourcing helpdesk support to IBM’s global clients worldwide as well as IBM offices in ASEAN. The ASEAN RCC is one of IBM’s 11 regional shared services centers based in Malaysia.

In 2003, IBM set up the ASEAN RCC to improve customer satisfaction and reduce operating costs by consolidating several call handling groups across functions into one regional center covering Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.

“I am encouraged to note that IBM, one of the first global information technology companies set up in Malaysia, has been a supportive partner to our efforts in building a competitive and modern shared services hub,” said Datuk Dr. Maximus, Malaysia’s Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, who officially launched IBM ASEAN RCC new office covering 80,000 square feet.

“Malaysia views the growth of shared services centers very favorably, not only as a valuable source of employment and income, but also as a source of less tangible but equally important benefits which includes the transfer of important skills and competencies to local knowledge workers as well as exposure to international best practices and standards,” he added.

The 24x7 center has grown to serve clients located in countries outside of ASEAN. To date, its strategic outsourcing help desk supports more than 20 global clients in 70 countries in the Asia Pacific, US, Europe, and Africa regions as well as more than 12,000 IBM users in the ASEAN region. With multi-lingual local workforce and foreign-hire contact specialists, the center provides service in nine different languages.

“The center highlights Malaysia's role as an important location in delivering total customer satisfaction, with a support element that hems the final pieces of the total IBM experience for clients,” said Ou Shian Waei, Managing Director, IBM Malaysia.

In line with IBM’s corporate strategy to globally integrate the company’s operations, IBM consolidated some 82 contact centers spread across more than 10 countries in the Asia Pacific region to five countries which include Australia, China, Japan, India and Malaysia.

“From a humble beginning of less than 50 seats, our Center has grown to more than 400 seats in just five years. It is anticipated that by next year, the number of job opportunities will peak at several hundreds more,” Ou said.

According to PIKOM, the Association of the Computer and Multimedia Industry, Malaysia, the local shared services and outsourcing (SSO) industry at present is worth US$ 300 million, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 30 percent year on year.*

As IBM moves toward being a globally integrated company, it has adopted The Globally Integrated Enterprise Shared Service (GEISS) operating model with which IBM directs the use of investment more efficiently through better prioritization, standardization, and key initiative management.

“Global integration is about tapping into the best skills and capabilities from across the globe and delivering them where needed. From the time when it was established in 1961, IBM has made significant investments in Malaysia, which is an important part of IBM's transformation journey from a multinational company into a globally integrated enterprise,” he said.

Since its inception in 2003, IBM ASEAN RCC has won awards from the Contact Center Association Malaysia every year.

*Source: The Association of the Computer and Multimedia Industry (PIKOM)

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