Jabil Vietnam champions diversity, prioritises wellbeing, and leads in innovation

October 26, 2023 | 16:34
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Khanh Nguyen, Jabil’s human resources manager in Vietnam, delves into this inspiring evolution with VIR's Thanh Van, highlighting the company’s unwavering dedication to career progression and top-tier operational standards through strategic collaborations and technological innovation.

Congratulations to Jabil for recently being honoured as the Best Place to Work for in Asia and the Most Caring Company at the HR Asia Awards 2023. Could you share some insights into Jabil Vietnam's efforts and contributions that led to these accolades?

Jabil Vietnam champions diversity, prioritises wellbeing, and leads in innovation
Khanh Nguyen, Jabil’s human resources manager in Vietnam

As a multinational conglomerate, Jabil is aware of its workforce's diverse cultural backgrounds. Recognising the inevitable professional challenges that arise in such an environment, we go beyond tending to the physical wellbeing of our employees and place significant emphasis on mental health.

Regular sessions are conducted where specialised doctors address health concerns tailored to seasonal ailments, thereby educating employees on proactive health protection. We also facilitate recreational activities, establishing clubs and platforms for employees to unwind outside of work.

The Employee Assistance Programme offers our staff and their families wide-ranging expert support on health and wellbeing themes, not only in relation to professional challenges but also for life's day-to-day hardships. This system allows our people to seek guidance, emotional consultancy, and coaching on any obstacles, whether work-related or in their personal lives, thus, improving their quality of life.

Jabil Vietnam champions diversity, prioritises wellbeing, and leads in innovation
Jabil Vietnam receiving the Most Caring Company award at HR Asia Awards 2023

Amidst the challenges faced by the manufacturing industry, how did Jabil provide exceptional employee care while maintaining sustained business operations?

During the peak of the pandemic, the company's main priorities were preserving employment and ensuring the health and safety of its staff members. Following national mandates, Jabil ensured that all its personnel followed stringent health protocols.

When directives required shelter-in-place measures, some companies opted for temporary on-site accommodation. However, Jabil went above and beyond by leasing 4- and 5-star hotels licensed for operations during the pandemic for nearly 5,000 workers. Approximately 100 buses were deployed daily to safely transport these employees between their accommodation and their workplaces.

Despite the comfortable setting, the isolation from families could lead to heightened stress for some. Recognising this, the company collaborated with unions and organised wellness check-ins, extending support to on-site employees and those in quarantine.

While specific national regulations exempted businesses from paying wages to quarantined workers, Jabil ensured that affected employees received a specific portion of their salaries, supporting them during challenging times. In addition, essentials were regularly provided by union representatives. Jabil's resilience, collaboration, and team spirit were truly exemplified during these trying times.

Jabil is often highlighted for its progressive working environment and people-focused approach. Can you shed light on some of its core beliefs and practices that make it stand out?

At the heart of Jabil's culture is a profound respect for individuality – a belief that our employees should be allowed to express themselves authentically. We pride ourselves on creating a disciplined environment where everyone adheres to the highest standards of professionalism.

By fostering a culture of learning and development, which includes training, mentorship, and leadership programmes, as well as opportunities for cross-functional collaborations and skills enhancement, we empower our employees to reach their full potential and contribute their best to our shared mission.

We also support members of staff with internal scholarship programmes and opportunities for unlimited growth within our organisation.

This, however, does not mean we are exclusively inward-focused. On the contrary, we also prioritise investing in young talent, opening up career opportunities for students in Vietnam through internship and training initiatives with professional development roadmaps.

Last year, we launched the Jabil Vietnam scholarship scheme for students across approximately 10 institutions in Ho Chi Minh City. Apart from financial support, the scholars are also offered various training, development, and career opportunities from Jabil.

We believe in a symbiotic relationship, inviting these students to Jabil's grounds, giving them a glimpse into our working world, and facilitating interactions with our alumni to share their success stories.

In the future, we will continue to roll out new initiatives to constantly improve the workplace and experience working at Jabil Vietnam.

Jabil Vietnam champions diversity, prioritises wellbeing, and leads in innovation
Khanh Nguyen (left) presented flowers to representatives from partner universities joining the 2023 Jabil Vietnam scholarship programme

How is Jabil addressing the evolving dynamics of manufacturing automation and the integration of AI in the modern workplace?

Jabil, an integral player in the manufacturing arena, is spearheading a transition towards automation, focusing on state-of-the-art technology and manufacturing processes that prioritise both environmental sustainability and human health.

For instance, some specific production lines that may have health implications for human operators, perhaps due to specific emissions, are being automated. This shift is twofold. Firstly, to reduce the reliance on manual labour by adopting mechanised, standardised processes, and secondly, to diminish the potential health impacts on workers.

Currently, both the Jabil site in Vietnam and the larger Jabil Group have integrated many robotic and automated assembly lines. Such automation reduces human error, ensuring a more efficient and precise manufacturing process.

As the company moves towards automation, it remains devoted to training its workforce, equipping them with new skills tailored to the evolving manufacturing landscape. Jabil commits to upskilling its workforce, ensuring they are always our most valuable assets.

Moreover, in the broader spectrum of human resources, some AI tools are making significant inroads into office tasks. These serve as invaluable resources for research and data mining.

Yet, it's essential to recognise that machines cannot fully replace the unique human touch. People inherently possess the ability to make choices, offer individual opinions, and connect with others on an emotional level, making them indispensable in the workplace.

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By Thanh Van

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