Digi's eight young apprentices to shadow CXOs for a year

Press Release
August 2, 2016

Digi's eight young apprentices to shadow CXOs for a year

  • Digi CXO Apprenticeship is a career kick-starter programme that hacks the run-of-the-mill management trainee format into a fast, disruptive way of accelerating talent development in their formative years.
  • Eight (8) apprentices to be mentored by Digi CXOs for a year of fast, furious learning before graduating into full-time roles as a way to build next-generation workforce and leaders .

SHAH ALAM, 3 August 2016 - Digi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd (Digi) this week welcomed eight (8) bright young Malaysian talents as its first group of Digi CXO Apprentices. These capable individuals started their cool jobs on Monday, 1 August 2016, and are now each apprenticing with one of the eight Digi Chiefs (CXOs). As apprentices, they will receive exclusive mentorship from their respective CXOs, not only shadowing their daily schedules but having direct exposure to the inner-workings of Digi's business and hands-on involvement in projects spearheaded by these CXOs every single day for the next one year.

"The big idea is to put our young talent on the path of accelerated learning early in their careers through intentional mentorship from C-level management, in order for them to become effective contributors and frontrunners in the organisation, driving a fresh new way of work and innovation when they graduate into their respective full-time roles thereafter," said Haroon Bhatti, Digi's Chief HR Officer.

The eight new recruits edged out a total of 880 other Malaysian applicants from Malaysia, United Kingdom, Australia and Canada to be Digi's first batch of CXO apprentices. They were part of the 48 talents chosen to participate in the Freedom Challenge, where individuals went through a rigorous full-day business challenge. Of that, 24 individuals were then selected for the final phase of interviews with Digi's CXOs.

"At the speed our industry is changing, we felt we needed a fast, agile, disruptive way to bring young talent through the developmental levels quickly and so we hacked (or put a new spin on) the run-of-the-mill management trainee programme from start to finish, from the way potential recruits were selected, to the way we assessed individuals during the Freedom Challenge, the CXO interviews and the apprenticeship format versus the typical rotation between departments for the first year of work.

"Take for example the Freedom Challenge (watch video here), instead of the traditional interview process we decided to assess our young participants via a series of challenges that saw them developing ideas for a potential new product or service within a limited time frame. While it helped us evaluate their performance under pressure, and observe their problem-solving skills and thought processes to make our selection for the next phase of interviews, it was also a great way to evaluate if they were a good-fit for Digi's culture, which is very focused on everyday innovation driven by employees," said Haroon.

The new spin on doing things saw eight digital-savvy, innovative and purpose-driven fresh graduates clearly set the bar above their peers to win the apprenticeship spots with Digi's CXOs:

Inspiring Apprentices Age Graduated from... Apprentice to... 1. Wendy Liang 23 University of Nottingham Albern Murty, Chief Executive Officer 2. Joel Thum 23 Sunway University Karl Erik Broten, Chief Finance Officer 3. Nicole Wong 22 Sunway University Loh Keh Jiat, Chief Marketing Officer 4. Andrea Ong 22 Taylor's University Praveen Rajan, Chief Digital Officer 5. Devraj Sathivelu 22 University of Nottingham Eugene Teh, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer 6. Justin Yong 26 University Of Hertfordshire Orsolya Sekerka, Chief IT Officer 7. Low Hui Qi 23 Australian National University Kesavan Sivabalan, Chief Network Officer 8. Wan Nur Alia 23 Multimedia University Haroon Bhatti, Chief HR Officer

According to Haroon what is also interesting is that the apprentices are not venturing into areas which they graduated or majored in, an intentional decision to bring a different perspective and fresh ideas to continually disrupt the current way of work within Digi. "As an organisation, we're also trying out something new and taking the necessary bets to continue innovating to attract the right talent. Time will tell if this is the best format for grooming young talent. We believe we have the right building blocks and full support from management to make this a success, and a conducive environment where future talent will continue to thrive in our digital future - one that provides the stability of a giant, and the speed of a startup."

The inspiring eight apprentices have an exciting year set before them, having the opportunity to experience:

  • Accelerated learning and development giving apprentices a competitive edge at the start of their career.
  • Front row seats to decision-making, driving business and digital ambitions.
  • Direct CXO mentorship and guidance for one year.
  • Global exposure to Telenor Group's businesses across 13 markets in Asia and Europe.
  • Live Digi's promise in giving you the freedom to inspire the next.

Interested in Digi CXO Apprentice? Surf to www.digi.com.my/cxoapprentice, and watch our inspiring young talents battle it out at the Freedom Challenge here.