Wednesday, 1 February 2017

#hrdsummit17 blog 5

So I'm back at #hrdsummit17 for the second day, and the crowd is noticeably smaller despite the later start. Possibly this is because many delegates are nursing hangovers from a late night at the awards ceremony last night, and it will be interesting to see how many people sneak in throughout the morning. 

We are starting off with a talk from Cisco's Jill Larsen, on reimagining and transforming HR. 

She began by sharing many of the contextual statistics that other speakers had shared that highlight how work is changing. The relevance here is that Cisco had been thinking about this earlier than many organisations and decided to transform their HR offer and service to prepare for this future. 

 
She talked about their People Deal. It helped engage all employees by talking not so much about HR stuff and focusing on the employee and customer experience. This started out small and cost very little as it was mainly about conversations and ideas. 

This then began to involve rethinking what HR needed to be based on what employees felt they and customers wanted to experience. This is a novel approach and one I'll be thinking about a lot in the coming weeks. 

They also then began to individualise the employee experience, starting with pay and rewards, allowing each employee to completely customise their total reward package. They then began to rethink their talent brand and began to make it more human, recognising their employees are their best ambassadors. This latter project is something I'm very keen on in my current organisation and have started to work on, so it will be interesting to see the outcomes. 

The way Cisco measure their talent brand impact was startling in that I don't think many organisations will even be considering the things Cisco are doing, let alone aim to compete with Cisco. And yet that says more about them than it does Cisco. 

She went on to talk about their Talent Cloud, which looked fairly complicated but also quite effective, and I suppose for an organisation whose HR team alone numbers 900 then they need something of this level of complexity to manage their talent and workforce planning.

She left us with a few challenges that she feels would help HR to transform. Determine your value proposition. Rotate talent. Focus on the experience. Go digital / vertical. And find champions. To be honest though these could be considered good change management practice in general. 

This was an interesting talk and whilst a lot would be more relevant to multinational organisations, the principles were helpful for anyone thinking about HR transformation. 

The next slot was a panel discussion on digital HR transformation, moderated by Richard Doherty from Workday, with contributions from HR leaders in Rolls Royce and AstraZeneca. 

Both organisations faced considerable challenges in terms of transforming their HR services. One point that stood out at the start was how both organisations had lots of disparate systems in place to manage aspects of their HR service, and there was an overall lack of integration and joined up thinking.

Clearly both organisations had chosen Workday as their preferred solution in terms of integrating their different HR services, and it's a product I'm not familiar with although I have, in my time, implemented two different full HR systems in two different organisations so I know how important it is to get the right system. 

One thought that occurred to me was that these two HR leaders were very pleased with Workday but what if we asked front line staff and line managers, what would they say about it? I just wonder if the viewpoint of HR leaders (including myself) is perhaps too blinkered to see whether technological changes in HR have a positive effect across the entire business, not just in HR. 

And now it's break time. 

At least until I do my own talk at 10:55. 15 minutes, 30 slides auto advancing every 30 seconds, on the concept of the Amazing Workplace. 

Let's see how that goes. 

See you on the other side. 

Till next time...

Gary