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Scanning for sales stars


Splunk, a global provider of operational-intelligence software, set up its Asia-Pacific headquarters in Hong Kong in 2011. Since then it has provided software solutions for a number of major organisations in Asia, including airlines, banks and telecoms companies.

Asia is currently the world’s fastest-growing market for IT services and Splunk is looking to add staff to cater for the rising demand for its services. Robert Lau, Splunk’s area vice-president for Asia-Pacific and Japan, talks about the company’s working culture, its hiring plans in Asia and what he looks for in job candidates.

What does Splunk do?
Splunk turns machine data generated every second of every day by websites, applications, servers, networks, mobile devices and more into valuable insights known as “operational intelligence”. Our software enables organisations to monitor, search, analyse, visualise and act on massive streams of real-time and historical machine data.

By monitoring and analysing such data, including everything from customer-click streams and transactions to network activity and call records, Splunk is able to help companies deepen their business and customer understanding, improve service and uptime, reduce costs, and mitigate cyber-security risk.

What are your recruitment plans?
As a global company serving clients from more than 85 counties, Splunk is developing rapidly, especially in Asia. We are looking to add 20 sales and technical-sales professionals to our staff.

We are looking for high-calibre sales candidates with proven track records in direct- and channel-selling enterprise software solutions to large enterprises, especially in the FSI (foreign service institute) and Telco (telecommunications company) sectors.

For technical-sales, we need people with strong backgrounds in selling and supporting business-analytic software solutions. We welcome job applicants that are based in Hong Kong and from other regions.

What makes Splunk a favourable employer?
Splunk has been named one of San Francisco’s “Best Places to Work” by the San Francisco Business Times for four years in a row. In Hong Kong, we offer a similar workplace to that at our headquarters in San Francisco, which has a multicultural and open working environment.

Our five core values are innovation, passion, disruption, openness and fun. We innovate by providing clients with game-changing solutions to their problems. We believe that a company can have the best people and the best product in the world, but without passion, you can’t call it Splunk.

We are open and honest when communicating and staff are encouraged to voice their opinions. We have an internal social media application called “Chatter”, which is similar to Facebook, where staff can host discussions and share ideas. We have an open-door policy and we like it that way.

We want to be disruptive and never settle for the status quo. We continually reevaluate solutions to ensure they remain the best, and tweak them to take advantage of new pieces of information. We strive to lead, not follow, while continuing to disrupt the market.

“Work hard, play harder” is also a phrase that has been used at Splunk since the company first started. We are committed to this environment of having fun and working hard at the same time. Every Monday there is a team lunch gathering to unite staff and allow them to exchange ideas. We also offer staff birthday leave to show that their employer cares for them.

What training and development opportunities do staff have?
We provide extensive training for our team on a regular basis. There is training every quarter to update staff with the latest developments in the industry. The training can be face-to-face with lecturers or virtual, where staff can learn on their computer. Virtual training sections consist of videos and allow staff to learn at their own pace.

We encourage staff to rotate to different departments within the company to widen their horizons. We also arrange for staff to attend seminars and meetings on IT to gain more industry exposure.

What key attributes do you want to see in job candidates?
We have openings for both senior and junior positions and we welcome people who have experience with enterprise software and operational intelligence. Those with experience in support enterprise will certainly have an advantage.

We want staff who are innovative and fast thinkers. They also need to be competitive, while being open-minded and team-orientated.