Inspiring the Future: Kuala Lumpur's Volunteer Day

Standing together to make a difference is something we proudly do every day at Guidewire. Through Employee Resources Groups (ERGs) and the Guidewire Gives Back (GGB) charitable program, our teams are enabled to make a real difference on the ground.

Marking an incredible five years of Guidewire's presence in Malaysia, the Kuala Lumpur office banded together recently to empower the youth in their local community by supporting them to explore future careers in IT. Read about the team's volunteering day with Guidewire Gives Back, supported by our women-led ERG, GROW.


Fitri: I’m Fitri, I’m a Consultant 1 in Delivery Services, and I’ve been at Guidewire for one year.
Ratha: I’m Ratha, Senior Project Analyst in Malaysia, I’ve been here 1.7 years.
Shazwan: I am Shazwan, Senior Consultant. I’ve been with Guidewire for five years.
Don: I’m Don, Regional Director for Guidewire Services Center (GSC) in Kuala Lumpur. I’ve been here for five years.

KL Team Volunteering Blog Intros

Why did you join the Guidewire team?

Ratha: Because of the people who interviewed me. I have never felt as comfortable as I was during the interview. The interviewers (Brian, Sorcha, and Don) made me feel welcomed and important. I got another offer from a different company but I am glad that I chose Guidewire. People here really live up to the company values and that's what kept me here, apart from the great benefits! :)

Fitri: I joined because of the many benefits provided, including health and wellness. The people and its culture have kept me here.

Don: Guidewire’s core values and the opportunity to help communities in need through ERGs like GROW and GGB.

Shazwan: I knew that Guidewire was a multinational company and foresaw that I would have a chance to interact with people from other parts of the world. Fortunately for me, that's exactly what has happened as I've had the pleasure of meeting colleagues from the United States, Australia, Spain, Ireland and Japan. I would say the number one reason I've stayed is the company culture. Our three values- rationality, integrity and collegiality- aren't just a saying. People here really embody these values in their day-to-day. Whenever I meet colleagues even from other parts of the world where their culture is different I somehow feel that we have the "same head" as the saying goes in my culture.

What made you want to volunteer for the 'Excursion For Girls' day and what role did you play in it?

Don: Helping others in need to become successful in life just as I was helped by others when I was in need is what inspires me to take part in Guidewire Gives Back events. At the recent Excursion for Girls event we had 40 volunteers in Kuala Lumpur office stand together to give these young girls a chance to experience A Day in the Life of an IT professional at the Guidewire office. Our hope was to sow the seed of interest in computer programming, and motivate them to explore IT as a career to improve their future livelihood. We also had 13 regional volunteers across all APAC offices (Australia, India and Japan) take part by having Zoom calls with the girls for an international cultural exchange experience.

Ratha: I co-led our GROW/Guidewire Gives Back Excursion for Girls with the GROW APAC Lead, Kimberly. It was my manager, Don, who inspired me to organize this event. His idea to expose young people, especially these young girls, to a potential future career in IT in the hopes of making a positive impact in their lives, was a noble act. Therefore, I decided to be part of this great initiative. 

I conducted research and planning for this event back in March with our group of volunteers. We met with the Rumah K.I.D.S and Yayasan Chow Kit to understand their needs better. I took part in the Overall Event Organizers Track as one of the coordinator with the Shelters. I also volunteered as the IT Experience Facilitators Track throughout April and May. On the day of the event, I joined the Career Talk panelists with four other Guidewire teammates to share my education and work experience with the girls. 

Kuala Lumpur Volunteering Blog Image

Fitri: Volunteering for this cause was an opportunity for me to inspire people and open up opportunities for others.

The objective of the event was to inspire the girls in Malaysia to perhaps one day pursue a career in the IT industry, as women make up only 35% of the digital economy in the country. The goal is to break stereotypical barriers and biases regarding the IT industry as well as to show them how fun our industry can be.

As a volunteer, I had the opportunity to be one of the emcees for the event and to give our guests a tour around the office. Introducing them to our snack area and how we separate the halal/non-halal cutleries as well as our prayer room, which is equipped with a washer for ablutions, showed them how companies in Malaysia have become more inclusive and understanding of the people's religion and culture over the years. Introducing to them our wellness room, our board games, the pool table, the Playstation set, and our work desk setup (ergonomic chairs and standing desk) showed them that most IT companies nowadays value their employees' work-life balance over anything else. Seeing their fascination as they went around the office could easily warm anyone's heart.

I also had the pleasure of designing and creating our own fun IT games alongside several others for the girls to play. The intention of these games was to expose the girls to programming concepts. One of the rare privileges that not many people get to have is to have someone play a game that you've designed, created, and worked on from scratch. I can safely assure you that it's one of the best feelings one could have. To see someone play and enjoy your game, solving the puzzles you've created, and finally reaching the end of it with excitement was just amazing. Once the games were solved, we would give them an explanation of how these "puzzles" can be identical to other "puzzles" that one might get to solve when programming, alongside teaching them that there are also a lot of other data structures than just Stack.

Shazwan: I have a soft spot for social causes. Any chance I get to help someone in need I will jump at the chance. Guidewire Gives Back gives me the perfect excuse to do that while also achieving the company's target!  

I volunteered to be the lead for the event-organizing committee and helped handle the transportation, meals, event flow, certificates, souvenirs and gifts. At the end of the jam-packed day, we gave the participants souvenirs, gifts and certificates as a token of appreciation for joining the event.

What impact did this event have on the local community?

Shazwan: I could see that the participants in the event were really engaged in the activities that we had planned for them. For example, one of the activities was designing a website. The facilitators had prepared a template that the participants could enhance and beautify using their own creativity. Some of them were so engaged doing the task that they had to be reminded about the next planned activity. I also saw that participants really enjoyed being there and felt comfortable talking with the volunteers. Hopefully they will remember this day as a positive experience and become more keen on pursuing an IT career. The caretakers of the shelter homes expressed their gratitude for inviting them to this event toward the event closing remarks.

Don These young girls are often limited with career options due to lack of exposure, financial constraints and opportunities available. This hopefully will have inspired them to pursue IT education and career, and have a better livelihood in the future.

Fitri: My hope is that these cool, fun and insightful activities will help to break the perceived barriers as well inspire the participants. For someone like me, who was only inspired of my future career at the age of 18 and is still able to make it to the industry, I hope that these girls are motivated at a young age on where to go next, as it will help them to prepare, anticipate, and be thrilled on what's to come.

Ratha: I am hopeful that this program could encourage others to also help the community in need. I hope to encourage the younger generation to pursue their career in the IT industry so that they could also benefit and be successful in it like I have been.

Kuala lumpur Volunteer Blog image 2

Why was this volunteer opportunity important for you?

Don: I grew up in a poverty situation like these children from shelter homes. University education and a career in IT changed my livelihood. I hope the same could happen to them too.

Ratha: It was important for me to make an impact on the lives of these children so that they will prioritize education and be a successful person like others.

Fitri: This opportunity has not only ultimately allowed others to be inspired with regards to their future careers, it has also given myself the opportunity to embark on a leadership role, co-leading the game creation as well as improved my soft skills by becoming one of the emcees throughout the event as well as leading the girls on an office tour.

Shazwan: This volunteer opportunity was possibly the highlight of the year for me. I got a chance to inspire the young generation to take up a career as an IT professional and show them their career possibilities. On top of that, I also benefited from organizing this event as I had a chance to practice leadership skills to make this event possible.

Do you feel that Guidewire as a company aligns with your personal values? 

Don: Absolutely! With GROW and GGB, I've been able to continue leveraging my Volunteer Time Off and our Guidewire network to assist the local communities in need for causes that I am passionate about.

Ratha: Absolutely, yes. Guidewire is the first company that I have seen who focus on giving back to the community. This is truly inspiring, and I feel happy and proud to be part of this company and the GGB committee.

Fitri: Yes. Guidewire's strong effort in allowing its employees to give back to the community, in more ways than one really resonates with me. For a company to focus on not just the success of itself, but for the success of others as well is an awesome trait to have.

Learn more about Guidewire Gives Back and our Employee Resource Groups. Thinking of a career in IT? Explore our open roles and get ready to Navigate What's Next, with Guidewire!

Kuala Lumpur Team GGB GROW Event Group Photo

Start Exploring...