Jabil Vietnam marks 15-year journey in Vietnam

November 10, 2022 | 12:45
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This year marks the 15th anniversary of Jabil in Vietnam. On this occasion, Victor Brizuela, operations director of Jabil Vietnam, spoke with VIR’s Thanh Van about the company’s 15-year journey in the country with a focus on manufacturing operations and talent strategy.

Congratulations on the 15th anniversary of Jabil Vietnam. Could you share some key milestones and achievements that characterised Jabil’s journey in Vietnam over the last 15 years?

Thank you for the congratulations! Over the last 15 years, Jabil Vietnam has grown with the aspirations of the country and we are proud to continue our journey in bringing more value to the community as well as to the Electronics Manufacturing Services industry.

Jabil Vietnam first broke ground at our first building in 2007, inaugurated our second in 2019, and expanded our third in October this year. During that journey of growing and evolving, we have created jobs for thousands of local employees, seeing our workforce grow to more than 8,600 today. It is fulfilling for me to see Jabil Vietnam become one of Jabil’s mega sites with outstanding operational performance that contributes to the success of Jabil global, which is listed on the Fortune 500, ranking 119 in 2022.

To me, the achievement that most characterises Jabil’s journey in Vietnam is the way we partner with our people and the communities we operate in. As a responsible corporate citizen whose ultimate goal is to contribute to society and give back to the communities where we live and work, Jabil Vietnam has implemented and partnered with relevant stakeholders for many meaningful community-oriented corporate social responsibility activities.

As a testament to our efforts, Jabil Vietnam was recently recognised by the chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee as one of a few Enterprises with positive contributions to the development of Saigon Hi-Tech Park (SHTP) on the occasion of SHTP’s 20th anniversary.

Jabil Vietnam marks 15-year journey in Vietnam
Victor Brizuela (left) and Huu Binh (Jabil Vietnam's senior finance controller) receiving recognition certificates from Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee

Never has the issue of retaining people in manufacturing been so prominent since the pandemic. What challenges have you faced as a manufacturing leader in bringing in and retaining employees during this time? How have you addressed those challenges at Jabil Vietnam?

It was such a challenging time for all of us. We had to do all we could to ensure the safety of our people while maintaining manufacturing operations amid the city’s worst wave. Our people are our power and our greatest asset. That’s why we do everything we can to protect them both physically and mentally.

Jabil global in general and Jabil Vietnam in particular swiftly and methodically implemented many health and safety measures in accordance with guidelines from the country and the city’s Center for Disease Control – including but not limited to, enhanced building sanitation protocols, daily health and temperature screenings for everyone entering our facilities, social distancing protocols and tools, increasing personal hygiene requirements and installing hand sanitisation stations, limiting access to sites and where possible working from home, sharing educational materials to help prevent the spread of the virus, continuous and multi-disciplinary communication with our employees, and implementing many virtual health and well-being programmes to engage and connect employees.

To me and the leadership at Jabil, the best way to deal with any uncertainty is to place people at the heart of everything we do. Even at the peak of the pandemic, our employee welfare and well-being were prioritised. Jabil Vietnam also applied One Road - Two Locations as guided by the government for more than 2,500 employees. The monthly cost for this model was about $5.2 million. With this cost, the average anti-pandemic cost per employee was about $2,000 per person per month.

Jabil Vietnam received positive feedback from the SHTP and relevant Health authorities. In an audit in June by the Ho Chi Minh City Steering Committee for Covid-19 Control and Economic Recovery and the Ho Chi Minh City Center for Disease Control, Jabil Vietnam remarkably scored 100 per cent in terms of the three safety assessment criteria consisting of general safety, specific safety, and safety criteria for food and drinks services. Moreover, we also stood side by side with the nation during outbreaks, donated in-cash and in-kind necessities to hospitals and medical centres, and sponsored the building of quarantine and treatment facilities at the SHTP.

Along with the recovery of the economy, Jabil Vietnam has recently announced the expansion of its manufacturing mega site in Vietnam. Could you shed some light on the expansion? What is the company’s strategy to build a pool of talent to facilitate the expansion, especially the training and career opportunities for the employees here in Vietnam?

Our latest expansion comes on the heels of strong growth for Jabil Vietnam. The new building is also located at the economic heart of the SHTP. This six-story building with 12 bays covers a total of 158,000 square feet of space and is expected to house up to 1,700 employees at its full capacity. Together with this expansion, Jabil Vietnam will continue serving our customers in the industrial, communications and networking equipment, cloud and enterprise infrastructure, retail, and digital print industries.

This success would not be possible without the support and dedication of our people. At Jabil, innovation, ideas, and new perspectives come from a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. We have been heavily investing in talent development and human capital strategies that encourage, support, and hold managers responsible for retention.

These strategies include ensuring that talent-buy and talent-build efforts feed a culture in which people are appreciated and included. We plan to meet current and long-term business needs by attracting talent from a diversity of sources, fostering opportunities for everyone, and cultivating talent across departments.

Jabil Vietnam also cares for employees’ wellness and well-being, implementing actionable ways to improve the workplace environment and developing individuals by conducting internal training workshops to upskill and reskill existing employees so they may stay updated with new technologies, processes, and requirements, allowing them to move progressively in their careers.

Every day, our employees are empowered and emboldened to be innovative, take chances, and move Jabil forward. It’s the accountability, capabilities, dedication, and commitment from each and every Jabil Vietnam member that helped us to achieve today’s success and prepares us for future growth.

Jabil Vietnam marks 15-year journey in Vietnam
The expansion of Jabil Vietnam’s manufacturing site represents the unwavering dedication that makes Jabil a great place to work

What are some of the initiatives you do as a leader of Jabil Vietnam to empower and support your team every day? What are the results of these initiatives? How do they contribute to the success of Jabil Vietnam today?

There is a famous saying, "If you want 10 years of prosperity, grow trees. If you want 100 years of prosperity, grow people". In this regard, I pride myself and Jabil Vietnam in promoting a culture that empowers all employees and enables and challenges them to be their best selves.

We engender a collaborative spirit and an open-door policy that supports talent development. Everyone is encouraged to share ideas and creativity, making the work interesting at Jabil. This underscores Jabil’s values of integrity, ingenuity, and inspiration.

Along with this, we promote a diversity, equity, and inclusion policy. At Jabil Vietnam, we have a balanced workforce of 42 per cent female and a multinational working environment with the presence of employees from more than 10 countries, in which local talent accounts for over 94 per cent. We are also committed to contributing to society by offering jobs for nearly 50 physically-challenged employees and many other meaningful community-oriented activities. These are just a few of the things that make us all proud.

Jabil Vietnam marks 15-year journey in Vietnam
Jabil Vietnam initiated the Pink Me Run marathon event to respond to Jabil Global Volunteer Cancer Awareness Day and raise funds for the Breast Cancer Network Vietnam

At Jabil, everything is possible. As a testament to Jabil Vietnam's effort in promoting and encouraging an engaged, collaborative, diverse, and inclusive culture, our company is recognised as one of Vietnam's Best Places to Work and the Best Employer of Choice.

Celebrating 15 years of Jabil in Vietnam, what is your vision for the company moving forward from this significant milestone – in terms of both business and people? How do you align your operational plan with development opportunities and career growth for your workforce?

Jabil’s vision is to be the most technologically-advanced manufacturing solutions provider and a trusted partner to many of the world’s most recognisable brands.

With people, we will continuously enhance our team’s capability to prepare our organisation for the future, building on our track record of successful growth and diversification. Jabil Vietnam pursues our workforce strategies by always considering this a high priority for top executives.

We are developing quantitative and qualitative approaches to efficiently and effectively attract, engage, and retain human capital. Specifically, we will focus on expanding our young talent pool with various approaches, including implementing employee-in-training programmes, offering Jabil Vietnam scholarship and internship opportunities, tightening partnerships with key universities, conducting upskilling development programmes, and more. This will allow us to build a sustainable future workforce that tightly fits with the company's operational plan and business vision.

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By Thanh Van

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