Effective HR strategy as a driver of change. Part 2

HR strategy plays a critical role in business development and achievement of the set goals. We discussed this and some other issues in the first part of the Space Magazine interview with Natalia Halunko, HR Director of UKRSIBBANK BNP Paribas Group. In the second part of the conversation, the expert shared her opinion on how to build a team that would share the company’s values, as well as whether it is necessary to invest resources in new knowledge and skills of the personnel.

As a Top Employer, please share some tips on how to build a team that shares the bank’s values. What are the main values ​​of UKRSIBBANK?

We strive to ensure that all our decisions are based on agility, a culture of compliance, the desire to meet customer expectations, as well as the ability to conduct an open dialogue with all of our stakeholders. At the same time, we understand that at the stage of transformation of our business model, which is accompanied by a huge number of changes, we need to constantly re-calibrate our values. We do this in an Agile transformation based on several key beliefs:

  • customer comes first;
  • openness over confidence;
  • efficiency above plan;
  • discipline over control;
  • courage over habits.

In order for teams to share the values ​​of the bank – IMHO – it is necessary to start with the leaders. Declared values often ​​remain declared and have nothing to do with the values ​​of managers and the behavior they demonstrate in their work. HRs know that in the classics of the genre, a corporate model of competencies is based on values, then goes a reward system in any form available to the organization. We have all this, but this is not enough for us. We want to make sure that leaders do not just verbalize values, but also demonstrate them in their behavior.

It is also important for us to understand to what extent employees are ready to be guided by the values ​​in their daily work. Therefore, we held 157 seminars in various departments of the bank in order to discuss in what typical work situations, which values ​​are applied on a regular basis and should become the decision-making criteria. More than 3,000 people took part in these seminars. In this way, we have increased awareness and the likelihood of adopting corporate values.

A leader who understands and accepts the values ​​of the company, recruits new people taking into account the values, builds the team taking into account the values, demonstrates by personal example the values application ​​in daily work. That is why we have “leadership by example” as one of the competencies for leaders.

As part of the Top Employer program that we talked about in the first part of the interview, you’ve created the Employee Ambassador community. All its members promote the employer’s brand among colleagues and friends. What motivates them to do this? What tools do they use? Do you use this channel to find new employees?

I really love this practice. And at the same time, it seems to me that the employer should be very ethical when working with ambassadors. We do not aim to influence the behavior of our ambassadors. The employer’s mission is to create conditions in which people self-actualize and can do what will have a positive effect on the brand. If employees feel that their values ​​coincide with those of UKRSIBBANK and are ready to speak for that publicly outside or inside the organization, then we will create all the conditions for them. We provide them with the necessary knowledge through training, invite experts and trainers. For example, our ambassadors received training in SMM and copywriting in order to work professionally in social networks and feel confident there.

We also have a referral program that has already gone through several cycles of evolution. This is a well-known practice in the market, so there’s no need to describe the details, but I’d like to share our results. Every year we have a growing number of vacancies closed under the referral program. In 2020, 32% of all vacancies in the bank were closed based on the recommendations of employees. The effectiveness of this process is confirmed by the retention factor, which is higher for the recommended candidates compared to other external candidates.

In the time of rapid development of digital technologies, an increase in the volume of data and information, and innovations that change absolutely all areas, the constant development and growth of specialists and employees is required, as well as acquiring new skills and knowledge. Do you have programs for the development of skills and competencies for employees? And what, in your opinion, should these competencies of the future be?

UKRSIBBANK provides a wide range of growth opportunities. First of all, it is a constant change in processes and work tasks that encourage us to be creative, inventive, to improve cooperation and to learn quickly by doing.

This is the possibility of continuous learning, which is supported both through the distance learning system on My Development, and through hybrid modular courses, such as the School of Leaders. Currently, there are more than 350 remote and hybrid trainings in our catalog of training courses offered to all interested employees.

The employer’s mission is to create environment promoting self-actualization and activity that will have a positive effect on the brand.

Participation in project work is another powerful development opportunity. This year, the I-Players teams have agreed 14 projects with their sponsors that will potentially affect the work of the entire bank. I witness how enthusiastically and persistently teams overcome obstacles, convincing themselves, sponsors, and the bank’s board that they are capable of creating outstanding solutions and implementing them into our professional life.

Many local projects were introduced by our colleagues within the framework of the “School of Leaders”, “School of Product Thinking”, “School of Scrum Masters”, “School of Service Design” training courses. Each of these projects has already made our bank a little better than it was before. I would also like to emphasize that the ability to teach others is a top-class skill. At the same time, teaching others is a great opportunity for development, the effectiveness of which is the highest in the portfolio of development activities.

There’s a question, why invest so much resources in new knowledge and skills? The answer is obvious! The world is changing, the needs of our clients are changing, the bank is changing. We, as employees, cannot stand aside, because our knowledge, skills and abilities become outdated faster than we imagine. All over the world, the value of professional certifications, which have a two-year re-certification period, is growing rapidly. This is based on the fact that knowledge loses its relevance every two years.

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