In the past eight years that I have been with MTN Eswatini, I can tell you that the company has grown drastically. And, that was not spontaneous. It has taken collaboration across all stakeholders and partners. I clearly recall that when I joined Swazi MTN there was a challenge of disengagement of staff manifested, in part, through a company-wide survey known as the group culture audit.
To resolve this challenge, we had to deliberately work in collaboration with internal and external stakeholders. Some decisions, though unpopular at the time, have turned MTN Eswatini into a great company that has not just added years, but value to the economy of the country and to all stakeholders, particularly its shareholders and staff
As we turn twenty years of connecting the nation, we have seen an almost un-paralleled improvement in staff engagement. We are currently one of the best operations within MTN Group when it comes to employee happiness and engagement. And this has been affirmed by a couple of awards received by this great company.
In 2016 for instance, we were gold- accreditation by United Kingdom-based Investors in People (IIP), a global benchmark of good people management practice which tests workplace trends and leading practices. This awards put us in the top 5% global of companies who have been accredited.
In 2017, Swazi MTN was crowned the best operation when it comes to implementation of the 21 Days of Y’ello Care. This is MTN Group’s flagship corporate social investment initiative undertaken from 1 – 21 June every year. As a result of the successful implementation of this initiative, we won the MTN Group President CEO’s top Award which comes with prize money of E1.4 million.
As if that was not enough, we further won an Award for being the ‘best place to work’ across all MTN operations. The cherry on top is that staff engagement is currently at its peak, and is constantly driven and monitored through cross-functional teams and tracked as part of departmental and individual performance.
Against a global benchmark of 4%, MTN Eswatini invests 8% of payroll in learning and development. The total investment in learning and development translate to 2% of the company’s total operating expenditure. Whilst the global benchmark for education assistance in companies is pegged at about 7%, MTN Eswatini has pushed the envelope and invests about 13% which is almost twice as much as what most companies do.
On sponsorships, we remain one of the leading sponsors of soccer, cycling, basketball, music and the arts in the Kingdom. We have done this through the sustenance of long-standing properties like the MTN Premier League of Eswatini, MTN Bushfire Festival, and introducing new ones like MTN SWAMA Music Awards.
On corporate social investments, we have invested over E40 million through different projects which cover education, health, enterprise development, cultural initiatives and national priorities.
We have stimulated the economy through promotion of innovation, developing new products and solutions, and creating employment opportunities through formal and informal employment for our staff and partners. We have contributed to the country’s aspiration to promote financial inclusion through Mobile Money introduced in 2011 which circulates over E100 million daily with over 540 subscribers.
In our 20th Anniversary, we are additionally excited that we have managed to connect over a million SIM cards and close to 50% of them have been registered in line with the SIM Registration Regulation of 2016.
Because this is MTN’s birthday, we have lined up a number of promotions – a brighter way of saying “thank you” to our loyal customers. While this is the company’s birthday, MTN is happy to be the one offering gifts.
The 20 years does not mark the end of the road of MTN but a start of greater things to come!
– Mr Sibusiso Nhleko, Interim CEO