Announcing IBM South Africa Alumni Group

The Greater IBM Connection and the IBM South Africa team are pleased to announce the launch of the new South Africa LinkedIn group of our community. We’re starting this group as a way for our community of Greater IBMers to interact and network with community members in India.

To do this, we’ve partnered with an IBM Recruiting team in South Africa, led by Natasha Pillay-Bemath.

To join the South Africa group sub-community:

  • You must first join the global Greater IBM Connection community here.
  • Then request to join the South Africa Alumni group here.
  • Note: You must provide accurate information about your IBM employment on your profile so that your membership can be approved for both groups.

Thank you for your interest, and we look forward to you joining today!


— Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

Women in Technology: Make A Difference by Joining IBM

IBMersJoin other exceptional women who are making a difference.

At IBM women have been making contributions to the advancement of information technology for almost as long as the company has been in existence. Today, women represent approximately 30 percent of IBM employees worldwide and more than 22% of our global executive population is made up of women, two-thirds of whom are working mothers.

Did you know?

Are you looking for a new challenge, inside a progressive organization that values and rewards collaboration, innovation and creativity?  If you want to focus on today’s most exciting technologies — Social, Mobile, Analytics, Cloud — the opportunities are endless and you can make a difference at IBM.

Learn more: Careers for Women at IBM

And apply for jobs:  Job Opportunities for Women in Technology

Why Work at IBM?



Check out these hot jobs today, and be sure to stay tuned for more to come.

– Posted by Julie Yamamoto, Program Manager The Greater IBM Connection

A Mobile App to Cut Down on Wasted Water: IBM Launches WaterWatchers in South Africa

In this blog post at Building a Smarter Planet, contributor Ahmed Simjee

Smarter Planet Leader Ahmed Simjee, IBM South Africa

details an initiative he is spearheading in South Africa – WaterWatchers – aimed at using mobile phones and crowdsourcing to cut down on leaks and wasted water.

gautengThe WaterWatchers app launched last month in Gauteng Province, home of Johannesburg and the capital city, Tshwane. With 12.3 million residents, the province represents 23% of South Africa’s population. The app launch was timed to coincide with the United Nations’ World Water Day, March 22. If you’re in South Africa, you can download the app.

Read the post



World Water Day

Getting to Know the Millenials – Q&A with IBM’s Abe Thomas

What can the recent IBM Global Student Study tell us about the leaders of tomorrow?

Abraham Thomas

Abraham Thomas

In this Q&A publsihed in Business Day Live, Abraham Thomas, IBM South Africa’s general manager, speaks to Margaret Harris about this, and the issues, differences, and challenges uncovered. Read more.


Insights from the 2012 Study

Download the report

study cover


— Posted by Regan Kelly, Editor/Community Manager, The Greater IBM Connection

IBM CEO Ginni Rometty Addresses South Africa’s Business Leaders

IBM Chairman and CEO Ginni Rometty speaks to more than 200 South African business leaders about IBM’s commitment to Africa at the IBM CIO Leadership Exchange in Johannesburg, South Africa on February 5, 2013.

(Graham Carlow/Feature Photo Service for IBM)

IBM been doing business in Africa for more than 90 years. Most recently, the company has been expanding its presence by focusing investments in more than 20 African countries.

Read more about Technology in Africa: Extracting Insights from Big Data in this Smarter Planet blog post by Steve Hamm.


Follow IBM South Africa on Twitter: @IBM_SouthAfrica

Imbizo! IBM South Africa and Its Leadership Team

IBM CEO Virginia Rometty Shares Her Leadership Philosophy

Ginni Rometty: The 100 Women Who Rule the World (

The Center for CIO Leadership

Middle East and Africa Inspirational IBMers – Natasha Pillay-Bemath

This is re-published from an IBM series of articles called “MEA Inspirational Colleague Series”.  This series consists of interviews that profile successful female IBM’ers in the Middle East & Africa to demonstrate how global IBM’ers can relocate, live, and work successfully in this quickly emerging market.



Natasha Pillay-Bemath,
IBM Recruitment Leader, South Africa

Natasha is the Recruitment Leader for South Africa. She has over thirteen years of recruitment experience both as an agency Director and an in-house Manager. As a result, Natasha has learned to influence through expertise, embrace challenge, and help IBM’ers succeed, which is why she has been recognized as IBM’s MEA Inspirational Colleague for December, 2012.


1. When did you join IBM Middle East & Africa?

I joined IBM on April 1st 2012.

2. Why did you make the move from agency to in-house recruitment?

I wanted the exposure to a larger global organization, to expand my skill-set, and focus on my growth and development as opposed to spending another decade in local recruitment.

I also wanted to gain entry into a global organization and more importantly, on researching, I fell in love with IBM’s Smarter Planet. I am a “purpose” person and Smarter Planet resonated deeply with me. I felt like IBM would be a great platform for me to contribute towards South Africa and Africa. This is very important to me as I believe in South Africa, Africa, and its people and I believe it is my purpose to play a role in its development and success.

3. What does your role as South African Recruitment Leader entail?

It involves working with the recruitment team to acquire the best talent in the South African market. It also involves positioning IBM South Africa as the employer of choice in the regional employment market.

Recruitment plays a pivotal role to the organization’s performance and success. Indisputably, organizations are only as good as its people and Recruitment is instrumental in securing top talent. The Recruitment team and I are extremely passionate about this, our role and contribution to the South African operation.

4. Have you always lived and worked in South Africa?

Yes, I’ve always lived and worked in South Africa. I’ve lived in Cape Town, Durban, and now Johannesburg.

5. How have you found the experience working in what is widely regarded as a male dominated industry and a male dominated region?

I came from an industry (Agency Recruitment) that is predominately female. However, it’s been an interesting change. IBM South Africa is dedicated to female hiring and development and I’m looking forward to contribute to that. I think recruitment has an important role to play in acquiring female talent.

6. What are your pastimes outside of work?

I love reading books. I’m also lucky enough to have a four year-old son who I love spending time and playing with, which really helps me keep grounded and prevents me from taking life too seriously.

7. Do you have family living with you in South Africa?

I live in Johannesburg with my husband and my son. My parents and wider family live in Durban, which is a six-hour drive away.

8. How do you manage to juggle your demanding role, social life, and family commitments?

I think, at the end of the day, it’s about managing output at IBM. You need to focus on your deliverables, but IBM is flexible about how you do that so you can arrange your schedule accordingly and know that you will only be measured on output. IBM has definitely offered me the flexibility I need.

9. You’re bilingual – speaking both Afrikaans and English. Is this essential for employees considering a move to South Africa?

No, not at all. Its pretty standard that English is the first language so international candidates who are fluent in English won’t have a problem at all.

10. Finally, are there any recommendations you would make to female IBM’ers considering a move to the Middle East or Africa?

I would definitely say it’s the place to be. MEA has the focus, the challenges, and is at the middle of it all. It’s exciting to drive through these challenges and show people how it is done in a growth market. I’m very excited about South Africa, extremely excited about Africa, and know that it’s the place to be for my own growth and development.

South African Imbizo! – IBM South Africa and Its Leadership Team

by Natasha Pillay-Bemath

In this issue:

  • IBM South Africa
  • SALT – South African Leadership Team
  • Recruiting Team Looking for Candidates


IBM South Africa

IBM South Africa, operating since 2008, is a significant contributor to IBM’s MEA (Middle East & Africa) Region. 2012 saw the appointment of Abraham Thomas as Country General Manager. Mr. Thomas has brought with him not only decades of IBM experience, but also an infectious and powerful positive energy that has swept through Team IBM SA.

The team is determined to achieve its 2015 goals to be a stellar contributor for IBM. The African market is a major focus of IBM’s, and South Africa has the potential to be at the forefront of this next IBM venture.

IBM South Africa wordleOur three priorities to reach our full potential are:

  • Develop and grow our people
  • Bring value to our South African clients
  • Build a robust partner ecosystem

On the first priority – to develop and grow our people – we’ve done considerable work in a short time. Events such as Family Day and Heritage Day celebrations have helped to create and develop team bonds and team spirit:

Heritage Day


SALT – South African Leadership Team

SALT – the South African Leadership Team – was launched in mid-August 2012. Initiated by Mr. Thomas, its goal is to gear IBM South Africa for growth through the deliberate development of the Company’s leadership capabilities.

The initial sixty members of SALT were selected from across South Africa to grow their business acumen, actively team with colleagues, and ultimately help lead IBM South Africa to realize our Company and revenue goals. Candidates will graduate next year from this 12-month program, and then a new set of people will be chosen.


Recruiting Team Looking for Candidates

The Recruitment team in South Africa has a significant role to play in IBM South Africa’s growth and success. Our mandate is to proactively seek out South Africans, specifically previously disadvantaged individuals, and to secure them as IBMers. Team members include:

  • Busi Masango – Recruitment Partner for SWG, S&D, Sectors
  • Darryl Devar – Recruitment Partner for STG & GTS
  • Gavin Wood – Recruitment Partner for GBS
  • Natasha Pillay-Bemath – Recruitment Leader South Africa

The team has been actively hunting for candidates who have shown:

  • A track record of top performance.
  • The IBM Values and competencies.
  • A deep, sincere passion to contribute to the South African success story. This is critical.

African landscape w/ IBM logoYou can find our recruiting team on The Greater IBM Connection on LinkedIn.  Please connect with them if you feel you can be a part of our success story. And feel free to refer other South Africans that you believe can contribute the same.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Greetings from South Africa,
The Recruitment Team, South Africa