The service centre “Intermedix” in Kaunas: growing competition in the market does not scare us
When it comes to foreign service centres based in Kaunas, the first example which comes to mind is the USA company “Intermedix”. And it is not surprising: the international organization which opened its doors in Kaunas in January 2014 has already brought together a solid collective of almost 700 people. The company is steadily growing every year and talks about the plans for further development – they are planning to employ another hundred people.
Lukas Jankauskas, the director of the service centre “Intermedix”, together with Simona Vabalė, the director of human resources, and Jolanta Kazakevičienė, the business partner of human resources, tell us about finding the staff with high technological abilities in Kaunas, how they attract specialists and the challenges they face in this market.
When “Intermedix” opened its door in Kaunas four years ago, the qualified staff was mentioned as one of the reasons for the investment. Was it true? Have you easily found all the necessary specialists?
Simona Vabalė (SV): “Four years of activity of “Intermedix” in Lithuania have shown that predictions which led to the decision to invest and start business in Kaunas were successful and true. Today we can rejoice that the company hired many talented, qualified employees. Moreover, we are already thinking about new challenges: we see more and more companies in Kaunas which compete with us in the labour market, so everyone has to make efforts to attract and retain employees.”
Could you say that your example inspired the competitors to start business in Kaunas as well?
SV: “Indeed, our company was one of the first in Kaunas, giving a good start and setting an example to other competitors. I think I can safely say that we are one of the leading international companies in Kaunas”.
At present, “Intermedix” Kaunas branch employs nearly 700 people – how has this number changed over the past year?
Jolanta Kazakevičienė (JK): “Every year, the number of staff naturally grows by about 10-20 percent. It is true that, comparing 2016 with 2017, we see a certain increase in employee turnover. We believe that the competitors who are applying for the same qualifications as “Intermedix” have influenced this.”
SV: “Are we afraid of the competition? On the contrary: each challenge encourages us to improve and make the existing processes and proposed values for employees better”.
Your typical employee – how does he/she look like?
SV: “We do not have the age criterion for the employees, yet we have plenty of energy and youth in our organization. Our typical employee is not necessarily from Kaunas. We have a lot of people who came to Kaunas just to work in our company. On this matter, the geographical scope of our team is quite significant”.
Lukas Jankauskas (LJ): “Perhaps we will not surprise anyone saying that the greatest shortage of employees is felt in the search for more experienced technology professionals or specialists with certain technical skills. At this point, employers’ competition for employees is strong not only in Kaunas but also throughout Lithuania. Looking for such employees, we started to attract people not only from the Kaunas region. We have employees from Vilnius commuting to Kaunas, one employee has returned to Kaunas even from Malta. All these stories prove that we have people who return to us – this is mainly due to good working conditions, interesting positions and given responsibilities”.
In your opinion, what attracts professionals to start working in “Intermedix”?
LJ: “The most common benefit that I hear from our employees is the opportunity to get into a different culture. It is a foreign capital company with its unique western culture, where every employee is valued and everyone’s opinion is important. In addition, corporate decision-making is completely different, so testing yourself in a larger, more structured company gives a chance for many of our employees to learn something new”.
JK: “Equally important is the fact that we care about the work-life balance of an employee. Let’s say, if a person wants to have a more flexible work schedule, we are always ready to discuss the issue and look for the most acceptable option for both sides”.
SV: “Our company’s attitude towards the employee is best reflected by an organizational committee called “It’s about you”. We value and accept each employee as he/she is without trying to change them, but attempting to purify the strengths of the person and adapt them at work. The activities of this committee are not only wide-ranging, but also have a significant value – we participate in socially responsible activities, we organize exciting festive events. Also look at the sports events – our staff teams play both in university and Kaunas leagues (football, basketball, volleyball)!”
The Volunteering month attracts a great deal of enthusiasm: we reach out to the people who need it most. We visited the lonely elders and the disabled, we contributed financially and carried out renovation works in the Kaunas Addiction Centre, we visited day care centres for children, we helped animal shelters, etc.”
Which graduates are most likely to become your employees?
LJ: “Most of our employees come from Kaunas universities and we are satisfied with their level of preparation. We cooperate with three major Kaunas universities – Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences and Vytautas Magnus University. KTU was our first partner to concentrate on the help for students: we opened the Innovation Lab to enable young people to implement their ideas. This Lab is a creative space where practical classes are held, students work with the software and hardware that we have provided.
We have a scholarship program with all three universities. It honours the brightest, most talented students every year. Another program supports student projects – this is a targeted scholarship for people who present the most interesting projects”.
What are your expectations and plans for this year?
LJ: “Since the opening of the second building in 2015, we have expanded – we are currently renting three buildings, we have installed more than 900 work places, therefore, there is room for more growth.
In 2017, we have maintained a stable number of employees and focused on the internal processes and the implementation of new technologies. In this way we have built the foundations for further successful development. In 2018, we plan to add about one hundred work places in Kaunas”.
ABOUT THE COMPANY
“Intermedix” is an international organization providing technology innovations based on data analysis and cloud computing, it also offers solutions to customers for top-level revenue cycle, operations and crisis management in more than 25 countries for more than 35 years.
The company provides various services for the ambulance industry, primary health care providers, anaesthesiologists, as well as fire departments, crisis management centres and other clients around the world.
“Intermedix” corporation has 32 branches in the United States, Great Britain, New Zealand and Lithuania. The service centre established in Kaunas is one of the largest in the company currently employing almost 700 specialists.