KUALA LUMPUR: From humble beginnings to becoming a successful figure in the tech industry, Ismail Mohd Noor has never forgotten where he came from and how he arrived there.
The Bestinet Sdn Bhd chief executive officer (CEO) dedicates his achievements to his family, who had supported him from young as he struggled through school.
It was not an easy ride for Ismail, revealing that despite coming from a middle-class family, his parents opted to send him to a private tutor in a bid to help him in his academics.
Being the eldest of three siblings, each with a four year gap, Ismail said it indirectly forced him to work harder as his parents relied on him to become the role model to his siblings.
He said his parents, who built the family by selling food and beverages in the old Subang Airport Cafeteria, were never deterred in supporting him and his dreams.
He thanked his father, uncle and tutor for inculcating the importance of education and leadership in him from a young age, dubbing them as his mentors.
He said his uncle became a major role model as he was growing up, exposing Ismail to leadership skills and virtues.
Quoting India's leader of the independence movement Mahatma Gandhi’s words “The future depends on what we do in the present”, Ismail holds close to the icon’s words, stating that what we do now and the decisions that we make today would affect the path that we take in the future.
“If a person does not want to work hard today, don’t expect to be well off in the future,” he said.
Ismail said his friends and siblings were not surprised with the roles and responsibilities that he holds today as they know his character and his drive towards achieving his goals.
He started out at Bestinet as a project manager where he managed modules that needs to be implemented.
He, however, said he was lucky that he had a background on Information Technology (IT), thus it easier for him.
He was later assigned to run the company’s operations, stating that it was challenging in the beginning as he had to always refer to the technical perspective in looking at the operations.
The team, he said, was excellent, dubbing his journey as “smooth sailing”.
Later, Ismail was chosen to lead Bestinet as chief executive officer.
Ismail said Bestinet started with the implementation of the Foreign Workers Centralised Management System (FWCMS) and followed by the Migrant Management System (MiGRAMS) and other solutions.
“With our commitment and perseverance to indicate the values and benefits for the stakeholders, we are at a juncture where the government and all stakeholders have put their trust on us.”
“Bestinet is on the verge of pivoting to be the best IT service provider in Malaysia and on the global stage. We would like to add more by offering verticals in addition to FWCMS. To do this, we need to have our team to be competent and ready to accept challenges,” he said.
Ismail said, for the last few years, Bestinet operated without any charge to its clientele.
However, today, the company is financially stable and has many plans in the pipeline set to be executed within the next three to five years.
He said Bestinet’s main goal was to structure it as the centre for venture capitalist, where its team would be a leader in the initiatives within the company.
Ismail said people could expect to see the company consolidating operations and deliveries offerings into a single platform, making them more focused and lean in their business.
When asked what moulded him into the leader he is today, Ismail attributed it to his experiences as child where his parents taught him the value of hard work.
He said he was also holding this position due to his working experience, by having been an employee, as well as a business owner.
“Based on these experiences, it has given me the perspectives of how both roles are important for any person to be successful in their careers,” he said.