Five years ago, US-based Gentherm was ranked second in the Forbes 100 Best Small Companies in America. For three consecutive years after that, it was always on the Fortune 100 list of the fastest growing companies.
The leading brand in the thermal industry currently has more than 13,000 employees working at 26 locations across 13 countries. Vietnam has become Gentherm’s latest investment destination in Southeast Asia, with a $12.6 million factory in Ha Nam province.
According to Gentherm Vietnam general director Alison Astarita, it is the company’s strategy to believe on their people as it identifies human centralisation as the most crucial tactic.
She said that one of the most important tasks at Gentherm is to develop its human resource through giving them knowledge, training them to be more professional and enriching them with social skills.
The company often organises knowledge sharing on well-being and on how to set up and manage family finance and maintaining a good family, how to be a good mother and how to look after their health. It also provides sport activities and endeavours to make the company a fun place to work.
“We are a manufacturing company and it is the people that make us successful. It is obvious that you need to provide good products to the market but actually, your people would bring more value to your organisation,” said Astarita.
She also stressed that there are more women in the management team than men, with a ratio of 55:45, at Gentherm Vietnam. In both technical-based and salary-based employee levels, nearly 51 per cent are actually women.
“This is based on our mindset that when setting up the company, we want to give equal opportunity to the right talents,” she said.
After three years operating in Vietnam, Astarita has witnessed the continuous growth of the company and she expects a breakthrough in coming time brought by about 900 hard-working and creative employees.
The biggest difficulty of Gentherm in Vietnam, according to Astarita, is to find enough technical talents. To overcome this, the company has started to develop their own people by getting fresh graduates, working together with vocational schools, providing internship programmes and training them with technical requirements they need.
“Vietnam is one of the fastest growing economies in the region. That is why we are trying to transfer more business to the country. At the moment, our factory is 75 per cent full. We also have another land next door which we plan to fill in. Definitely, there is a bright future for Vietnam," said Astarita.