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There is hardly any HR policy being followed since CM-Pak started operation in Pakistan. It is due to very same practice that many senior and loyal employees of company had to part with the company. Corporate all over the world are facing tough time. Though there are signs of recovery but still it will take time to gain the same pace. What is happening across the world has the same effect in Pakistan. Head offices in Egypt, Norway, UAE and China have clearly issued directions to cut the extra expenditure. For most of the companies, cost cutting measures start with the firing of its employees who are the ultimate assets a company can have. At the same time there are ventures which take it as a last resort, rather, they build their skills further to fight to end the rough ride even at the time of recession. Since the end of boom in Pakistani telecom market, we have experienced hundreds of layoffs during the last one year. In the very same period we have also seen companies nurturing their employees. We tried to find out how cellular operators in Pakistan take care of this human asset. We sent following basic questions to every GSM operator to know their HR strategy and policies.
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What benefit you offer to your employees, both in lower and upper management? How do you enhance the abilities of your employees? At your company, at the time of reducing cost, how important is to get rid of work force to achieve the goal? What policies you have for the fresh entrant? How many employees you terminated in 2008?

It dawned on us later that it was perhaps the hardest thing to ask about HR and their existing practices. Telenor According to Telenor, It is consistent in the benefits it provides to its human resource through all its tiers of management. These include, but are not limited to, mobile phone allowances, medical coverage, health insurance, Leave Fare Assistance and provident funds. Telenor Pakistan aspires to build a work culture that is open to ideas, people and innovation. In order to promote the vision and values of our HR policies, there are ongoing team building sessions, Internal Value Creation surveys are carried out every year, Telenor Development Process is held on a periodical basis as well as internal and external trainings are offered. Telenor Pakistan believes that even at

the time of financial crunch, human resource is the single most important competitive advantage that we have. There are no layoffs unless there is a violation of the code of conduct or a lack of ability to meet competence standards. Mobilink Whereas according to Mobilink, The success of Mobilink is, to a large extent, a reflection of the talent pool accumulated by the company. In addition to being some of the best minds in the country, they are also the best looked after. We attach the highest value to our employees and have built our company on the solid foundation of human resource excellence and motivation. Our HR policies offer comprehensive medical coverage, education assistance for further studies in addition to personal and professional development opportunities via trainings. We also have guidelines on employee safety, first-aid trainings as well as fire and earthquake drills to ensure our employees are adequately prepared in the face of challenge. Our unparalleled reward system and sound HR policies have recently earned us the Most Preferred Telecommunications Company 2008 Award at the Pakistan Society for Human Resource Managements Most Preferred Graduate Employer Awards 2008. To enhance abilities of it employees, Mobilink offers a wide spectrum of training interventions in partnership with the best local, international and in-house trainers and institutions. These technical and soft skill trainings are offered to all tiers. Several Management Development workshops in collaboration with Professors from institutions such as MIT, Harvard, LBS, INSEAD and LUMS have also been offered in the past that focused on enhancing skills of Mobilinks current and future leaders. To build a highly competent and professional group of future senior leaders, the People Management Toolkit program was introduced this year for the mid tier. The 3 cluster program has been developed to implement best management practices by utilizing a variety of tools. EMPLOYEE BEH In an earlier article, Zong and Warid are worst in Human Resource Category; I tried to highlight couple of HR related issues that Zong faced a year ago. Even after a year, the status quo remains the same. In its home country, working at China Mobile is considered as a matter of pride as it is worlds largest company in terms of subscriber base which is more than 554 Million as of now. In the 2010 interim report of China Mobile it says, The Group continued to strengthen its highlyefficient personnel management and incentive mechanism, adhere to the people-oriented principle and continuously enhance its human resource management. The Group has implemented a comprehensive budget management system and performance-based evaluation system, which helped to maintain its competitive advantage in terms of human resources while effectively controlling personnel expense. Personnel expense for the first half of 2010 was USD 1658 million (RMB11, 128 Million), representing 4.8% of the operating revenue, which remained the same compared to the same period of last year. The Group had a total of 153,098 employees as of 30 June 2010.

But in Pakistan, its child concern Zong has developed a different reputation; one of the obvious reasons is its weak HR policy. Due to the very same unhealthy policy, most of the employees do not prefer to work with Zong for a longer period of time. An employee from the HR department on the condition of anonymity disclosed that, every month an average of 3 people leave Zong and most of them are from the commercial department, which is considered as one of the most important department for any company. One of the major reasons for this is absence of benefits and incentives. According to our source, during the last 2 years, company has not offered any increment or pay raise to its employees, only a single bonus was offered during the last one and a half year. According to a latest survey, World of Work Report 2010 by a global recruiting company, Randstad, most of todays employers believe that the only a good reason for employee retention is the size of the company and fame of the brand. Contrary to this the facts obtained after the survey are entirely different. It says, Workers are more interested in remuneration levels, training and development, a good career path and flexible working arrangements. According to the source, few weeks back, company CEO sent a letter to all of his employees and advised to further cut down their expenses as the company was not meeting its targets. He directed to get rid of extra burden. After this particular letter, the entire work force has lost hope for any sort of increments in the near future. It appears that Zong has become a training institute for other mobile phone companies. It hires young people, train them and then let its competitors to get that trained staff for no cost. Telenor is one of the major hirer of this valuable staff followed by Mobilink and Ufone. Two weeks ago, two personnel from HR and marketing departments left Zong. One of them joined Ericsson and the other one was hired by Telenor Pakistan. Latest study tells that losing a trained employee is much more costly than hiring someone at a lower cost. There are following major issues that a company faces after losing an employee;

The Cost of Turnover: employee turnover is expensive and cost hundreds of thousands of rupees to a companys expense. This turnover cost includes hiring costs, training costs and productivity loss. It is difficult to get the exact estimate of turnover costs; industry experts often quote 25 per cent to 30 per cent of the average employee salary as a conservative estimate. Lost Productivity: If an employee resigns, then good amount of time is lost in hiring a new employee and then training him/her, and this goes to the loss of the company directly, which many a times goes unnoticed. And even after this you cannot ensure the same efficiency from the new employee.

Attrition leads to more attrition: The effect of attrition is felt throughout the organization. Co-workers are often discouraged and the negativity affects the remaining staff and some more people may eventually leave. Loss of Internal Information: When an employee leaves, he takes with him valuable internal information, customers, current projects and past history (sometimes to competitors). Often much time and money have been spent on the employee in expectation of a future return. When the employee leaves, the investment is not realized. Goodwill of the Company: The goodwill of a company is maintained when the attrition rates are low. Higher retention rates motivate potential employees to join the organization.

In this crunching period, organizations need talented staff. I hope this time Zong and other companies as well start taking things seriously as good employees are most valuable assets any company has especially in this time of global crunch.

Zong's CSR efforts include supporting scholarships to students at the University of Engineering and Technology (Peshawar),[2] as well as entertainment events at Dreamworld Resort,[3] which may present an opportunity for families to experience affectional bonding

Network Status Date GSM900/1800 Live/Active 25 April 1988

Type Mobile Phone Operator Industry Telecommunications Mobile Communications Founded 2008 Headquarters Pakistan Products Mobile services, Data services Parent China Mobile Website