Many Malaysian SMEs are too comfortable with how they have “always been” operating. They are slow in adopting digital solutions compared to other countries like Singapore and Indonesia. These businesses are happy purchasing Microsoft 1998 licenses once and using them forever instead of adopting Microsoft 365 running on the cloud.
I spent many years in my previous job trying to persuade Malaysian SMEs to digitalize the way they run their businesses, and it was very much an uphill task. After dealing with countless companies resistant to digitalization, I was in for a pleasant surprise when I joined 2X. Everything was done seamlessly online—the interview, the signing of the offer letter, onboarding, and the company’s day-to-day operations.
I was surprised that I even got an offer so soon! I didn’t have to come into the office or meet anybody in person and expose myself to the risk of contracting COVID-19. I was amazed at how quickly 2X shipped my laptop to me, which was already pre-configured with my credentials. It was smooth and seamless. I just had to set my passwords, and I was ready to go even before my official start date.
Onboarding happened fast, and before I could recover from that, I was introduced to even more tools and technology that I knew would make my journey in 2X digitally driven.
I’m glad to say that 2X’s digital culture has helped me thrive at work in more ways than one:
1. Digitalization Accelerates Learning
In the Game of Thrones series, Citadel was founded to promote and increase learning and knowledge. Likewise, 2X has its own Citadel, an online repository of knowledge created by 2X-ers, for 2X-ers. Information flows freely here. It’s great that the learning modules available are customized for specific job functions. For example, if you are joining as a Marketing Operations Specialist or a Data Analyst, what you need to do well in your role is written in detail.
During my first month, I was given the time and flexibility to complete multiple LinkedIn Learning training modules. LinkedIn Learning offers a broad range of managerial and soft-skills training modules. For the hard-skills and job-specific training, 2X-ers have Citadel. Everything is there, including step-by-step guides on how to use HubSpot, LinkedIn, Sendinblue, and set up Facebook Ads and Google Ads.
2. Digitalization Creates Transparent Workflow
2X uses a unique project tracking platform that makes communication and coordination effortless. The tool creates a transparent work environment where everyone in the team can track the status of any tasks or projects at any time, from anywhere. All communication, including discussions and approvals, is done via this platform.
This platform puts everyone on the team on the same page and makes it easy for the newcomers and even clients to catch up with the status of projects as they have a view of a well-documented trail of tasks from their seniors and predecessors.
3. Digitalization Helps Build Lasting Relationships
Ironic as it may seem, it’s only natural that we millennials use digital tools to stay in touch with one another socially. It’s the same at work. We interact using messaging apps and social media. The “active” groups in 2X all have WhatsApp and Telegram chats to plan weekend hikes, rock-climbing, kayaking, and badminton tournaments. It’s great to have threads of information so that newcomers can join us anytime, and we keep in touch by sending group photos and begin to plan other activities with like-minded people.
The same applies to client-related work too. We keep track of our projects using tools like Monday.com and Slack, and we interact on Teams and Zoom (even before the pandemic began!). These digital tools ensure that nothing falls through the cracks. Having weekly video calls helps the client remember that we’re humans too, who need breaks and time off, and encourages healthy and active conversations that can happen despite the physical distance.
4. Digitalization Creates a Collaborative Culture
We support our clients remotely, so digitalization has become an innate part of 2X. In contrast, many other companies in Malaysia are only just starting to jump on the digitalization and digital transformation bandwagon. From my experience, I know that there’s a vast difference between just using digital tools and building processes and workflows digitally and making sure things are done smoothly.
Here at 2X, everything is done on your screen and stored in the cloud. There’s literally one printer to serve more than 350 people, and we barely use it because it is unnecessary. When everything is online and accessible to everyone, it naturally creates a culture of openness. In many other places, people are defensive and protective of their work. They are unwilling to share their knowledge. But here, knowledge flows freely between people. Everything is documented in the cloud for people to learn and share.
A Modern Workplace for Digital Natives
As an adrenaline junkie who went to the extent of doing bungee jumping in a white lace dress for my wedding photoshoot, I can attest that the speed that things move here keeps the thrill of working alive.
Being born in the ‘90s, I’ve naturally been exposed to the boom of the internet and the luxury of cloud-based solutions and applications, and at 2X, I feel like I’m home. I was part of “IT transformations” in my previous organization, but at 2X, “digital” runs through our veins and is part of our genetic identity. You don’t have to explain the benefits of Office 365 or Google Suite to us. We get it because we use it day in, day out. There isn’t a need for roadshows or training sessions to explain cloud or collaborative working because that’s the culture—it’s already here.
That’s probably the best benefit of working in such a young company. Everyone here is a digital native (or aspiring to be!) and what I like most about 2X is that there isn’t any bias against young people. If you have talent and drive, the company will help you grow. It doesn’t matter how old you are, what race you are from, or anything like that. That is what pushed me to join 2X, and I am glad that I took the leap of faith. Now, I get to enjoy the fast-paced environment and, at the same time, log off at 6 p.m. daily to take a stroll with my two fur babies!