Why did you move to Slovakia?
First of all, it’s worth to mention that I am married to a Slovak, which gives you some context and perspective. I myself came originally from Indonesia, but I had been living in the UK for over 25 years, and my wife half of that time. When our second child was born, we realized that it was going to be very hard to manage our lives without some support from our immediate family, sure we had many friends which were very helpful when we need them but obviously, we couldn’t rely on them every time. Having our immediate family very close by and ready to help in moment notice is an obvious advantage especially when the children are still small. And since Indonesia is too far and too different (in terms of climate and culture), we chose Slovakia.
And then there were also other reasons, most notably the education of our children. We felt that the UK primary education system lacked some basic and fundamental education that our children required. We considered that the Slovak primary education system would fulfill these requirements.
Health care was also another consideration, we felt that Slovakia offered a better health service compared to the UK.
Finally, if we had stayed in the UK, there is no way we could had to afford to buy our own property, it’s just too expensive. Here in Slovakia, it is not just affordable but we could get better (bigger) property compared to the UK at the same price.
One last thing, Slovakia is literally is located in the middle of Europe. It has a long heritage, rich culture, beautiful nature, and a great place to be if you like outdoor activities (hiking, skiing, cycling, etc).
Kosice, where Ness KDC is located, is a small city where you can drive from one side to the other in 15 minutes (in London, it takes 3 hours). But being the ‘capital’ of East Slovakia it has its own International Airport with flights to all countries in Europe and beyond. And you can find almost everything you need here, and very close by. It takes only 15 minutes for me to go to work by bike. Gone are the days when I had to commute 2 hours a day on public transport. It’s just so convenient, and I get to exercise too. And more importantly, I get to be with my family more.
My Work – Health – Life – the Family balance has been much improved since I moved here.
2. Why did you choose Ness?
One of the pre-requisite, before we could leave London and move to Slovakia, was that I must find a job. And it’s not just any job or any company. This company must be technically oriented (I am from an IT background), and one that would accept someone who doesn’t speak Slovak like myself.
In Kosice there is not much company that can fulfill these requirements, I could find only about 4 or 5 companies. I applied to most of them.
Ness was one of the first that responded. I was invited for an interview. I took an opportunity when I visited the family in Slovakia to do a face-to-face interview with Ness and explore who they were and what they had on offer for me. I was very impressed with their professionalism and their deep root in technology. I couldn’t believe that there were about 500 technical experts working in this 6-floor building. The interview went well and they offered me the position. The position and the job entails were the perfect matches for what I was looking for, and Ness seems to be a good place to start my ‘journey’ in Slovakia, and so I accepted the offer.
3. How do you feel at Ness?
Remember those 500 strong employees? Well, they don’t work on the same line of business, in fact, there are about 7 LOBs that Ness is currently get involved with. I work with one of the biggest team, about 125 people. And for a long time, I was the only who was not Slovak.
At first, it felt a bit daunting and I had my worry, but I was proven wrong as my new colleagues took me in straight away. They tried to help me in any way they could to make me feel welcome. Of course, they all speak English 😊 I felt already at home.
From an organizational point of view, Ness is very professional from HR to Finance to IT Support and Front Office. They are very organized and always helpful and accommodating when I need something from them.
All of these made me feel supported and give me the confidence to do my job without worrying about bureaucracy, infrastructure, etc.
Outside of work, Ness also regularly organizes events for their employers AND their families. It’s a great place to work if you have a young family, like me.
4. What do you consider to be the best Ness assets?
b. Deep root in Engineering and high-level technical expertise (great place to work for IT person)
c. Care about the welfare of their employers (especially for ones with family)
d. Supportive – they provide you with everything and anything you need to do your job and not get in the way.