In times of Covid-19 companies face many new challenges – at GFT, the whole company switched to full remote work within a very short time. Thanks to the hard work of our IT and administration teams we are able to work remotely all over the world.
Due to the lockdown in Italy, some employees got stuck in different locations without any opportunity to travel. One of our employees now works 6,000 km away from the office. He is “stranded” in his home country in Pakistan, close to his family but far from his colleagues in Italy.
His name is Ali, he is from Pakistan and is a graduate in Aerospace Engineering at the Politecnico of Milan. He started working at GFT Milan in 2018 as programming analyst in our Insurance Business Unit.
We wanted to know how it feels to work remote and so far away from his team.
Why are you in Pakistan now?
“I’m here because of my sister’s wedding. She was supposed to get married in April and I wanted to take part in this very important event. But now the wedding is postponed and I’m blocked here. After all, in this difficult situation, I’m happy to be in Pakistan close to my big family because in Milan I live in a small apartment alone, I only have one flatmate.”
How are you handling “Working from home”? Is the time zone a problem?
“The time zone is not a problem, it’s 4 hours later in Pakistan and I follow the Italian working hour.”
How are you managing the communication with your team?
“Every morning I have a meeting with my colleagues and my manager, we update on the activities that we have to do and everyone is aligned, so communication and collaboration are our strong points! Also, I’m happy to be in contact with my team to know how they are and how they feel because in the office I shared a big part of the day with them, so they have become part of my Italian family.“
Why did you choose to move and to study in Italy?
“I chose to move to Italy because the Politecnico di Milano is one of the most important universities for Aerospace Engineering, the sector I was interested to study. And because of the culture and the lifestyle – Italy is one of the best countries in the world!
I also had some Pakistan friends that had already moved to Italy and they recommended it.”
How was the first period at GFT? Did you encounter any difficulty?
“The first big problem was the language. I didn’t speak Italian, so initially there was a problem of communication with my team, so I decided to attend an Italian course after work and now I can communicate in Italian in any context.”
How do you imagine your future at GFT?
“I’ve been working for the same client and the same project for 2 years, so in the future I would like to amplify, to diversify and to extend my knowledge into other fields, for example learning different programming languages.”
What do you miss most right now? What would you like to do when you get back to Italy?
“I really miss my dear colleagues, I can’t wait to see them and to hug them, and of course I miss Italy: it is my home away from home! When I get back, I would like to spend weekends with my friends to make up for lost time.”
Thanks for the interview!
Ali is the proof that, even in a challenging situation, if you want you can reach your goals. We at GFT Italy really thank you for your commitment and hope to see you soon.