Anticipation and alignment at global beauty giant L’Oreal

Yenita Oktora from L’oreal’s HRD Consumer Division Asia-Pacific says good HR practices lie at the core of the company’s success.
By: | May 9, 2019


The first-ever HR Festival Asia, brought to you by the combined experience of HR Technology Conference & Exposition (US) and HR Summit (Asia), takes over the Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre on May 8 and 9.

With a line-up of more than 100 speakers across six dedicated streams, and an Expo Hall with more than 100 exhibitors, there’s a little something for everyone at the event.

Check out our HR Festival Asia tag for more coverage direct from the event.

Despite the massive leaps in HR technology (or perhaps because of it), we now know that human talent is indispensable. Yenita Oktora of L’oreal shared with HR Festival Asia’s Talent Management and Development stream how her company translates that fact into real-world results.

“Recruit. Develop. Motivate. Retain,” Oktora said, “But always remember that the key phrase to add is ‘for the future’.”

She stressed on the importance of aligning HR goals with the overall objectives and direction of the company, in both the long and short term. This approach allows the HR team to anticipate, recognise, and address potential talent gaps before they morph into critical complications.

“The critical issue is making the decision on how to address the shortfall in talent,” she said. “Do you develop internally or do you hire externally? How does the disparity in time investment for the former compare with the cash investment for the latter?”

Oktora revealed that the explosion of social media influencers in the beauty industry can affect even titans like L’oreal. In a world where individuals with a large online following have the ability to produce their own lines of boutique cosmetics, larger companies need to consider collaborations they would not have imagined merely a decade ago.

She also touched on the need to distinguish between “high performance” and “high potential” employees. While it would be ideal for every employee to exhibit both qualities, that is rarely the case.

“Ambition matters. Identify individuals with learning agility – they are better for the organisation in the long run than someone who simply excels in their current role.”