15 Feb 2013

IBM looks to Gen Y for new delivery centre

8:00 am on 15 February 2013

IBM says it may look at rolling out more delivery centres in conjunction with tertiary institutions if its first centre in Auckland proves a success.

The world's biggest maker of mainframe computers opened its first centre with the Unitec Institute of Technology in Auckland earlier this month, and has just signed up its first customer, Westpac.

The deal will see the centre employing 100 Unitech students part-time.

The centre will provide several IT services to Westpac, including data cleansing and mobile banking services.

IBM says it is in talks with other potential clients, and it is hoped the centre will provide up to 400 jobs in total.

A partner at IBM New Zealand, Andrew Tubb, says employing Unitech students is not just about cheap labour, but tapping into the skills offered by this younger generation.

He says cost is very important but IBM is also interested in accessing a labour pool relevant to needs of clients, such as dealing with mobile banking applications that have to quickly align with the requirements of customers.

"If you look at Gen Y ... there's a skill set and a capability there that's incredibly attractive to IBM and to our clients."

Mr Tubb says the delivery centre in Auckland is the 50th such centre around the world that IBM has opened.

He says it's a well established model, and IBM is not ruling out opening more centres with other tertiary institutions.