HRM Asia Watch List 2018: Monir Azzouzi

The Head of Employee Experience at Malaysian telecom Maxis is a digital transformation specialist with a string of successes.
By: | October 18, 2018

The HRM Asia Watch List 2018 (#hrmwatchlist), brought to you by Armstrong Craven, showcases the brightest next-generation HR leadership talent from across Southeast Asia.


Organisational and digital culture is a highly-tangible commodity for Monir Azzouzi, Head of Employee Experience and HR Business Partner with Maxis.

HRM Asia Watch List

Monir Azzouzi

Head of Employee Experience & HR Business Partner, Maxis

Based in: Kuala Lumpur

HR focus area: Digital transformation, culture, employee experience

Favourite aspect of HR: ” I love helping people and organisations grow and develop to get through Industry 4.0.”

Career-defining moment“My background is in innovation, sales and marketing. It was a real eye-opener for me to see and experience the importance of purpose, culture, and leadership, as well as rewards and employee experience, to succeed with digital transformation.”

Whether through qualitative data, such as the telecom’s regular employee engagement surveys, or anecdotal evidence, Azzouzi is able to see the trends, the changes, and the potential roadblocks to that ideal workforce environment up close and in real time.

“I see my role as critical to making HR relevant in the ‘VUCA’ world, and we have been able to drive change through the vehicle of Employee Experience,” he says.

Native to Denmark, but at home in Malaysia since 2008, Azzouzi has experience across both large multinationals and much smaller businesses.

He set up a beachside restaurant and bar operation in the popular Amager Strandpark beach in Copenhagen, before moving into a sales and marketing role with a Scandinavian IT consultancy.

That led to a global role with IT outsourcing company Inscale and, eventually, a move to Malaysia to help manage the largest part of its workforce.

While up until this point, Azzouzi had not had “HR” as specifically part of his job titles or remits, there was certainly an emphasis on people management, and he had great success with managing the culture of his teams.

There has been significant career movement within Maxis as well. Azzouzi joined as Head of Performance and Development in 2014, and last year shifted to be the Head of Employee Experience and HR Business Partner.

“We digitalised every single process possible within the Performance and Development function, and on such a high-level that we’ve been featured as among the best-in-class globally,” he said.

In particular, he helped design a completely new strategy for leadership development involving a blended learning combination of mobile app and online surveys and assessments.

Monir says the effect has been to instill a digital culture in the top leadership of Maxis, and that is now flowing through to the rest of the 3,000-strong workforce.

“We have developed a framework on how to create a digital mindset for all our employees at Maxis,” Azzouzi said. “That framework is now being used throughout the organisation to help Maxis become a truly digital company.”

The HRM Asia Watch List aims to showcase the up and coming generation of HR leadership talent in Southeast Asia. The list will be unveiled daily between September 27 and October 19, 2018. Check the dedicated archive for the latest updates, follow #hrmwatchlist on social media, or see below. 

Introduction | Welcome address by Tom Mason

Profile #1: Jaspreet Kakar | Profile #2: Dianne Goette | Profile #3: Chen Fong Tuan

Profile #4: Felicia Teh | Profile #5: Monica Oudang | Profile #6: Evangeline Chua

Profile #7: Agapol Na Songkhla | Profile #8: Clayton Tan | Profile #9: Tony Tan

Profile #10: Vanessa Mercado-Maningas | Profile #11: Jahja Soenarta | Profile #12: Minn Yan

Profile #13: Rudy Afandi | Profile #14: Norazlina Idris

Profile #15: Naveen Chhabra | Profile #16: Monir Azzouzi