From Competition to Creating A Website that Helps IT Students Seek Jobs: Sum Sopha, Founder of Jobify​

While Cambodia is preparing for industry 4.0 and the digital market, Sum Sopha found a company, known as Jobify, that is playing an important role in pushing the technology sector in Cambodia.

Sitting in a room equipped with computers, Mr. Sum Sopha, wearing a purple shirt and sitting on a chair, described the beginning of his 2019 business plan. Sum Sopha is the founder of Jobify, a website for job matching and helping IT students seek jobs.

According to Mr. Sopha, the motivation behind the establishment of the company is the current job market for students studying IT.

“I noticed that the job matching and job market for IT students are still very limited. The first reason is that after IT students graduated, they do not have the opportunity to develop and prepare themselves for interviews or develop a good resume to help them successfully enter the interview stage,” he said.  

“We have all realized that the technology sector in Cambodia is hugely limited because jobs in this sector are limited. This inspires us to create this company to help them find jobs,” he added. 

This company began with a Startup Competition at Kirirom Institute of Technology, where they were studying at the time.

“At first, our members participated in a Startup workshop where we learned about the Business model. After that, we had a competition among 15 teams. During the competition, our team members collaborated to brainstorm ideas and create this business plan.”

The effort that all the team members put in allowed us to come up with a solid business plan. Jobify won the competition because this business plan received a lot of support from the Japanese investors and viewers of the competition.

He further explained, “Once the plan succeeded, we started the business plan as a visual, and after some time, the business plan developed into a system for our partner companies and people who are seeking jobs. We, then, put this business plan into the market.”

At this time, it has been 6 months since the business plan entered into the market and we have about 20 companies as partners, who recognize and praise this website of ours.

As a new business, they also face a lot of challenges. Sum Sopha stated that “the first concerns is that we are all new to the market and their understanding of the market is limited. However, after we have entered the market, we were able to learn from the experience, and thus helped us tackle issues that we faced. Another problem is the limited human resources. We had very few people when we first started, but now we have enough people to help support the works that need to be done.”

Jobify currently has 5 members, who are determined and passionate about improving the technology sector in Cambodia, especially when Cambodia is working to push the technology sector, engineering, STEM, and industry 4.0. 

Moving forward, Jobify will further improve the economy through the use of technology within the country. Sum Sopha added, “ our first goal is to stimulate growth by promoting the technology sector in the country. In the future, we will not just have jobs available inside the country, but also in Japan. Companies in Japan have partnered with us and make jobs available for fellow Cambodians in the IT field.”

He encourages students, studying technology or IT, to work hard to build a good foundation while they are learning it. He suggests that “students should try to find internships and work during their academic years 2 and 3 to strengthen their understanding and build their experiences in the field. In situations where they need assistance with creating a strong resume for job applications, they can contact Jobify and we will try our best to assist them.” 

The Cambodian government has also been trying to promote and expand knowledge in the fields of IT, Communications, and Engineering in recent years. 

During an interview with BizKhmer, His excellency Meas Po, Undersecretary of State and Spokesperson of the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications stated that “the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications is planning to create a policy that promotes creativity and innovation, while also promoting business sectors; startups, small, and medium enterprises. At the same time, they are working to create an opportunity for Cambodian youths, creating diversity in the economy and preparing for the digital market and industry 4.0.

It is important to note that according to the study of policy development of Cambodian heavy, medium, and light industry, and processing industry, Cambodia needs 6 million 5 thousand people who study STEM. However, the current number is well below that. We only have 1 million people doing STEM. 

By: Moeun Kimyan