Careers on the cutting edge
Research In Motion, the firm that gave us the BlackBerry, will double its staff in Hong Kong
NOT SO LONG AGO, the internet was an exclusive data transfer device available only to a privileged few. Today, with more than 1 billion users worldwide, it is a common, everyday tool.
With such a rapid expansion of users in the public and private sectors, companies, especially in the wireless data transfer industry, are striving to lead the way in the development of data communication.
The company behind BlackBerry, Research In Motion (RIM), launched the wireless communication device in 1999 and now has more than
5.5 million subscribers with 180 networks in more than 60 countries.
As the Hong Kong office drives growth in the Asia-Pacific region, it now aims to double its current staff of 40 by the end of the year.
RIM vice-president of Asia-Pacific Norm Lo said the company was mainly looking for candidates from the management, sales and marketing sectors in Hong Kong.
Basic requirements include a business degree and the appropriate certification and background in IT. An MBA and experience in wireless engineering are a definite plus.
Ideal candidates that would fit the company culture have passion, a desire to learn and believe in the product and service.
'We are changing the world, the way people do business and also their personal lives, and [we are making] them more productive,' Mr Lo said.
'We are looking for people who really believe in our progress, who have enthusiasm, passion, who are innovative, dynamic and have the drive and commitment to contribute to the success of the business.'
Mr Lo said a position at RIM was rewarding as the work environment was pleasant and innovative, with compelling and exciting technology, products and services.
'Many people join us because we are the leading company in the world, right on the cutting edge of technology in the wireless communication industry. It is a very exciting time now in terms of business.'
If that wasn't enough to attract future employees, Mr Lo added in jest: 'Everybody who joins RIM gets to use a BlackBerry.'
The recruitment process at RIM varies depending on the position applied for, but generally speaking, applicants complete a series of language tests and three rounds of interviews before being accepted for a position.
Once hired, employees are trained by RIM's internal educational organisation. Besides a combination of sales and product portfolio training, recruits are instructed about the company's overall strategy.
With its portfolio technology continuously evolving, RIM makes sure that its employees are always up to date.
'There is a tremendous amount of online training readily available. ICT [Information Communication Technology] is all about being in touch with the right people and the right information,' Mr Lo said.
As the company continues to grow, it offers many opportunities for promising individuals. Apart from the regular vertical promotion path, people who are sharp and have the ability and ambition can choose to follow a helix path, getting promoted as they move around.
'Job rotation is actually encouraged as the company eventually wants to develop senior managers who are well rounded in terms of various aspects of the business,' Mr Lo said.
He is excited about business prospects. According to Mr Lo, Hong Kong is an ideal regional base to support RIM's BlackBerry business and carrier partners in Asia because of its vibrant multinational corporation community, advanced ICT market and its highly skilled and experienced labour force.
'In a couple of years we are going to witness the explosion of the whole wireless data communication industry, which is still in its nascent stage,' Mr Lo said.
'For a young person it's a wonderful opportunity to catch onto the rocket and ride with it.'
on the move
Research In Motion plans to double its staff of 40 people this year
Candidates must be dynamic, innovative and have a passion for the brand
Continuous online training is available for all employees
The company is looking to develop well-rounded senior managers