As many companies in the telecommunications business are cutting back, Huawei is hiring, drawing workers from around the globe to its Shenzhen headquarters. Verified reviews from real guests.
It all adds up to hundreds of millions of shares, Sladek said. The biggest shareholder is Huawei president Ren Zhengfei, who was a civil engineer in the People's Liberation Army before he founded the company in , and who owns 1. Another thing keeping down the average age at Huawei — and perhaps clearing the way for promotions — is that staff can retire at If they've spent eight years at the company, they can hang onto their shares and reap the dividends, though they lose their voting rights.
Huawei is led by a board of directors, who are voted in every five years by a group of 60 representatives chosen by shareholders. The clipped greenery and low-rise buildings in Huawei's grounds in the suburb of Bantian are a contrast to Shenzhen city centre, a busy urban area packed with tall blocks, electronics stores and traffic. On the local highways, Huawei is big enough to have its own traffic signs. The move to the city could be tricky for recruits from other parts of China.
But in the heart of its campus, Huawei has built accommodation blocks for young workers who have just started with the company. However, each of the 3, or so inhabitants only have about 30 square metres of space each, meaning "it is a little crowded" and a bit like student halls, according to Sladek. Still, there is an open-air cinema close to hand, as well as a swimming pool, and there are basketball courts, ping-pong tables and football pitches dotted around for Huawei-ites to use.
There's even an old steam train, put to use in the past as a restaurant. Also on campus is the New World Cafe, a coffee shop that echoes Starbucks with its olive-and-brown decor and designer lampshades. It doesn't mean the cafe isn't busy — employees can order and get drinks delivered to their desks. Just under an hour's drive from Shenzen is Huawei's manufacturing centre at Songshan Lake. Again, it's massive — , square metres — but modern, as it was only finished two years ago, and young trees are dotted everywhere.
Inside the plant, workers wear colour-coded hats to indicate their role: On the shop floor, there are whiteboards with photos of each member of staff, showing pie charts and other data on their performance. And each day, workers stick a smiley on other whiteboards to let their colleagues know what mood they're in — happy, normal or unhappy.
A recent restructuring at Huawei moved manufacturing from all of its divisions — carrier, enterprise, consumer and emerging business — to this site, where access is tightly restricted. The company plans to double the size of the facility and has started building on adjacent land. About 10, people work here, in two shifts per day, and the company puts on about 15 buses to run people back to headquarters where necessary.
Huawei also takes care of career development at its headquarters, where there is a 50,square-metre training centre shown. On top of this, Huawei is in markets around the world — it has worked on 38 of the 80 LTE networks in service, it says. This means that there are a number of opportunities for its workforce to see the world — something that helps with recruiting, according to Sladek.
International tensions between China and other nations — as seen in this recent demonstration in Shenzhen over a territorial dispute with Japan — can be a stumbling block to Huawei's ambitions, though. In the US and Australia, it has run into opposition from the authorities in its attempts to get involved in building broadband infrastructure, for example. In the UK, however, it has got around concerns that its equipment may have secret backdoors accessible by foreign agents by putting itself under the scrutiny of government intelligence agency GCHQ.
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I tested some of the best Bluetooth headphones I could find, and loved some of their features. Xiaomi Mi Mix nearly bezel-less display. Xiaomi plans to make the Mi Mix available in China this November. Tech trends in China that are on their way over here. I noticed lots of tech habits in China on my recent trip to the country. Here are the main trends which I think will be adopted over here soon. In July, the company already introduced its "Ascend P1," a respectable Android-based smartphone that is thinner than many rival products and boasts better battery life than the iPhone 5.
The Chinese company has its sites set on being able to make better smartphones than both Samsung and Apple soon. Though this might sound overly ambitious, Huawei means business. Some estimates hold that roughly a third of the world's population already uses the company's technologies in some way, often without being aware of it. Many Internet connections run through servers made by Huawei, and many mobile-phone calls are transmitted through the company's base stations. In Germany, the first "surf sticks" using the ultra-fast LTE standard that were marketed by Deutsche Telekom, the country's telecommunications giant, were built by Huawei.
The company has launched a charm offensive that is currently trying to dispel concerns about its goals. Sladek said this at Huawei headquarters, a glass-encased palace in an industrial zone of Shenzhen, just a few kilometers from the Foxconn factories in which many Samsung and Apple products are assembled.
The facilities are so huge that the thousands of young people who stream out of them and block intersections each day during shift changes seem like they are part of some major demonstration. But in contrast to Foxconn, the campus-like grounds of Huawei's headquarters are devoted to developing rather than assembling products. The conference rooms are elegantly furnished, the espresso bars are first-rate, and the subtropical indoor plants are draped with glittering Christmas decorations.
It might be winter outside, but there's a steamy warmth in the restaurants and among the palm trees inside. The gigantic campus is home to some 40, engineers, whose average age is 29, and most live in dormitory-like housing. Huawei has some , employees in more than countries, including over 1, in Germany. Despite its global presence, however, the company is decidedly Chinese. Shenzhen, near the former British colony of Hong Kong, used to be a backwater community with some 30, inhabitants.
But in , it was designated China's first "special economic zone," a laboratory for the country's experimentation with free-market policies.
Today, the futuristic planned city is home to roughly 10 million people. When Ren launched the company, he had to import telephone switchboards from Hong Kong. Before long, though, the company was developing its own IT components. The rural parvenu then proceeded to conquer the domestic market in accordance with the Maoist doctrine: Company spokesman Sladek cites the company's rat-proof cables as an example of how Huawei is particularly good at responding to customer needs.
He explains how gnawing rats often destroyed telephone lines in rural areas. Huawei expanded abroad after the turn of the millennium. Soon, it might even surpass the market leader, Sweden's Ericsson. What's more, rather than making low-cost knockoffs, Huawei channels over 11 percent of revenues back into research and development, and already holds more than 20, patents.
Company founder Ren has never given an interview, and other Chinese peculiarities only add to the company's reputation for opaqueness. For example, Huawei has its own in-house committee of the Communist Party of China.
Sladek says people read too much into this, though, noting that every company with more than 50 employees in China has to have one, including the China-based subsidiaries of the German automakers Volkswagen and BMW. But China experts are skeptical of this interpretation. On the outside, Huawei seems harmless. With its palm-lined streets and neoclassical columns, the company's campus -- dubbed the "White House" -- would hardly look out of place in Silicon Valley.
Here, prototypes are subjected to grueling tests in a climate laboratory as part of quality-control efforts. In formal terms, the company is employee-owned. Its founder owns a 1. His daughter is the company's CFO, and his brother sits on the advisory board.
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