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Meet the LGBTQ ally and diversity champion helming dtac’s human resources

During Pride Month, dtac made history as a large enterprise in the SET50 extending its spousal benefits to same-sex couples. dtac also categorized gender reassignment surgery as medical leave and now offers parental leave for parents who adopt infants. The new policies reflect dtac’s responsible business foundation that brings together compliance, data privacy, supply chain sustainability, digital upskilling, climate change, human rights and the health and safety of our workers. dtacblog spoke to Nardrerdee Arj-harnwongse, Chief People Officer of dtac, to understand what motivated her to the launch these new policies. Bringing Your Whole Self to Work “Diversity and inclusion have always been at the core of dtac’s culture,” she said. “A few years ago, a same-sex couple asked if they were entitled to dtac’s wedding leave and allowance—and we said yes! But there was no specific mention of same-sex couples in our policies. We’ve now corrected that to send a strong message to our LGBTQ employees. We see you, we value you, and we want you to feel at home here.” As dtac’s Chief People Officer, Ms. Nardrerdee must keep thousands of positions staffed with happy, productive employees. Overall, dtac’s male-female divide leans towards the latter (68 percent) and the…

Why tackling climate change matters to dtac and Telenor

The planet is facing severe environmental deterioration caused by resource exploitation, leading to a decline in biodiversity. Shoreline cities like Bangkok are sinking faster than expected due to the rapid rise of sea levels. Agriculture is being disrupted by flooding and drought brought by extreme weather patterns, posing challenges to food security. “Climate change is not a linear problem, it’s an exponential problem,” Kristian Hall, Climate and Environment Director at Telenor, told dtacblog, referring to tipping points such as the melting of arctic permafrost, resulting in additional emissions of the potent greenhouse gas methane. Telenor is a major shareholder of dtac and provides the company with expertise in many areas, including climate change. Adhering to the Paris Agreement In 2015, representatives from 196 states gathered in Paris to adopt the legally binding international treaty on climate change, the Paris Agreement. Its goal is to limit the rise of global temperatures to below 2 degrees Celsius – preferably to 1.5 degrees – compared to pre-industrialization levels. “To achieve this long-term cap on temperature levels, each country is required to issue plans on how to reduce its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Nordic countries are setting stricter and more ambitious climate targets, aimed…

dtac CEO: Rethinking Business Resilience for the Post-Pandemic Economy

Human resilience is truly inspiring. And mobile connectivity has underpinned much of society’s ability to rapidly adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic. Within the first lockdown, dtac saw triple-digit growth in the apps our customers use to keep productive under social distancing guidelines, such as apps for video conferencing or collaboration in the cloud. During this third wave of the epidemic, we are also seeing data usage double at field hospitals, as patients and healthcare workers rely on mobile connectivity for critical information—and to stay in touch with their loved ones. And who could have predicted that 95 percent of dtac’s head office would be working from home one day? But despite these examples of human resilience, businesses are not always as flexible as individuals. And Thailand is now faced with the formidable challenge of rethinking business resilience for the post-pandemic economy. How can businesses be faster to change, less easily disrupted, and built on sustainable models that benefit all their stakeholders? We believe responsible business is the answer. CLOSING THE DIGITAL GAP COVID-19 accelerated the adoption of digital channels, both for private and government services. This has been an extraordinary opportunity for businesses to build their resilience by developing always-on,…

Telenor Connexion and dtac bring IoT-powered resilience to Thai businesses

As Thailand continues to digitize, the Internet of Things (IoT) market, which is a key enabler to this transformation, is slated to grow to US $2.19 billion by 2030 from US $120 million in 2018[1]. This staggering growth, coupled with even stronger data connectivity driven by 5G deployment, will be crucial not only to recovery, but also economic transformation. Against this backdrop, major IoT providers such as Telenor Group’s Telenor Connexion are in leadership positions to drive the innovation required to maintain and extend Thailand’s already high levels of IoT implementation. Telenor Connexion and Telenor’s businesses in the Nordics recently consolidated its global portfolio of brands under a single brand, Telenor IoT.  Telenor Connexion is a major partner to dtac and has been invaluable in dtac’s development of 5G and IoT use cases.  To better understand how machine-to-machine communications can boost Thailand’s digital transformation, dtacblog spoke to Seth Ryding, Chief Sales Officer Global Sales for Telenor Connexion. Q: How has the pandemic impacted the need for IoT solutions? A: The past 12 months have accelerated demand for IoT solutions. Things that could be done in person, such as meter readings, can no longer be carried out in the same way…

Changing digital usage drives need for radical transformation in mobile operators

dtac’s Head of Transformation shares how fast-changing consumers are pushing organizations to adapt Due to the pandemic, consumer behaviors are changing more rapidly than ever Organizations must accelerate their digital transformation to meet customer expectations for better services, more flexibility and greater personalization.   Driven by new ways to shop and work online that bloomed during lockdowns, mobile data usage in Thailand nearly doubled in 2020, reaching 20GB per person per month. To keep up, mobile operators must invest heavily in their networks. And they must do so while maintaining affordability. In this context, the sustainability of network operators will depend on their ability to transform and deliver services beyond basic connectivity. To understand how dtac is navigating this dilemma, dtacblog spoke to David Uhlenbrock, dtac’s new Head of Transformation and Business Development. Digital First “Digital transformation has been a hot topic for years. But there’s this misconception that you do it once and then you’re done.  In fact, we will always need to transform ourselves,” said Mr. Uhlenbrock. “As usage of digital channels grows, dtac’s ways of work must be simpler and more automated to deliver on the speed and experience customers expect. This isn’t new. But with the…

Unlocking the power of 5G in Thailand remains uniquely complex

VP of External Relations Austin Menyasz on how 5G’s benefits can be unlocked more quickly Originally from Canada, Austin Menyasz joined dtac in June 2020 after three years in Singapore with Telenor Group’s Asia operations as Director of Public and Regulatory Affairs. Previously, Mr. Menyasz was based in Hong Kong representing the mobile industry across Asia Pacific on policy and regulatory matters with the GSMA and was a civil servant for the Government of Canada. As VP External Relations at dtac, he continues to work with numerous stakeholders, from industry groups to technical experts and regulators, to ensure dtac can provide the best possible services to its customers. He joins dtac at a time when public-private partnerships have never been so critical to the success of Thailand’s digital transformation, due to 5G reshaping how businesses, government and telecom operators work together. dtacblog spoke to Mr. Menyasz to better understand how Thailand’s policy and regulatory framework affects the future of mobile connectivity. “Ultimately the underlying government objectives in Thailand do not differ substantially from the ambitions anywhere else: leveraging technology to better the everyday life of citizens and boost economic productivity. What does differ in every country is the regulatory and…

What tomorrow’s work looks like

Telenor Group’s head of human resources, Cecilie Heuch, on transformation and flexible work.The economic impact of COVID-19 has increased the pressure on all businesses to digitalize, streamline and modernize their operations. But few companies have responded quite as radically as dtac and the Telenor Group. (Telenor is a major shareholder of dtac.) Unlike Google or Facebook, which extended their work from home policies to late 2021, the Telenor Group joined organizations such as Fujitsu and Twitter in saying flexible work is here to stay indefinitely. To better understand how COVID-19 and digital transformation are radically transforming our work lives, we spoke to the Telenor Group’s Head of Human Resources, Cecilie Heuch. Tight Loose Tight Fittingly, dtacblog spoke to Ms. Heuch via videoconferencing for our monthly column with global leaders, Viewpoint. Although working from her home in Oslo that morning, she was preparing to pop into the office for a meeting—the exemplification of the flexible work trend. “What keeps me up at night these days is making sure that people stay safe and healthy,” she said. “We work hard to provide them with the required necessities to protect them. But there is also an emotional aspect. People are worried about their…

IT device expert “PeterGuang” talks about the future of mobile phone, connected devices and tech war

For space, press 0. If you want to type a text, press a button repeatedly until letters appear. If you want to type in numbers, press and hold number buttons. Many people might have been familiar with the way we functioned “push-button phone” of the 19070s and early 80s with 12 keys. Today, dtac blog sat down to have a talk with the developer of Thai language keypad-based phones, Peerapol Chatanantavej or widely known as “PeterGuang”. He brings his 20-year experience in Telecommunications to lead Device Portfolio unit at dtac currently. “I have spent my time in IT industry since I was a university student. After my graduation, I joined a factory and oversaw its TV manufacturing line. Later on, I moved to Nokia and initially took charge of network equipment. But by the time analogue mobile phone industry started to emerge, I was assigned to oversee Nokia’s mobile-phone operations. At that time, mobile phones were bulky and heavy. Each one cost Bt50,000. That was very expensive,” Peerapol said. His career has extended beyond Nokia. Peerapol had changed jobs over the years, working for several big brands including Motorola. During his stint with Motorola, he took part in the development of…

Head of newly-formed Telenor Asia shares his ambitions for the region

Just last month, Jørgen C. Arentz Rostrup assumed the new Head of Asia position at Telenor Group. The group’s Asian businesses, previously grouped into two clusters, were unified into a single Asia unit on 1 May 2020. The new setup marks Telenor’s renewed focus on developing its growth and modernisation agenda in the region, while also positioning itself to capture new opportunities. To better understand those ambitions, dtacblog spoke to Mr. Rostrup. But with travel restrictions still in place, our hopes of a lunch date were dashed. Instead, we called his house in Oslo, Norway, where it was 7am, and apologized for catching him so early. “Oh, don’t apologize! I wake up at 5am these days to try be somewhat on Asia time,” Mr. Rostrup indicated. He will not only arrive in Asia with minimal jetlag, but also armed with a firm grasp on his surroundings, “I lived in Asia in the 90s, in Singapore, and was traveling throughout the region. It was and still is a very vibrant region. I love how diverse it is and I’m excited to be closer to the business. Oslo and Norway are fine but looking back, I had the best times abroad.” Although…