Facilitating peer-to-peer collaboration for a better employee journey

CHROs need to provide staff with innovative digital tools for better cross-functional and cross-border peer-to-peer collaboration.
By: | April 8, 2021

To facilitate peer-to-peer collaborations, companies can set up virtual social platforms where employees can share ideas, best practices, processes and procedures, as well as data and expertise. Such platforms would be characterised by them being available on-demand 24/7.  

This is especially relevant in the post-pandemic environment as employees work from home and across different time zones, said Sujay Bhat, HR Technology Strategy Advisor, SAP SuccessFactors, SAP SEA, at a recent webinar held in collaboration with HRM Asia. 

To further improve collaboration, companies can empower employees by allowing them to access information, insights, know-how and data within the larger organisation through blogs, chatboxes and forums. For example, forums can be categorised by lines of business and interest groups to enhance connectivity and teamwork among staff. 

Bhat added that the use of online employee surveys to understand the current needs and expectations of employees from different departments is also effective in formulating HR technology plans.  

He also highlighted the indispensable role HR technology will play in various functions of a company, including: 

  • Flexible working arrangements.
  • Digitalisation for improved HR operational efficiencies.
  • Virtual hiring, onboarding, performance management. 
  • Effective delivery of upskilling content.
  • Ensuring employee well-being.
  • Agility in the overall execution of HR programmes. 

Two CHROs from the banking sector also weighed in on current issues facing HR leaders.  

Melinda McKinley, Managing Director, Head HR Transformation Portfolio, Standard Chartered Bank, said banks and financial institutions are facing an urgent need to accelerate the digitalisation of their HR functions at an unprecedented pace due mainly to the pandemic.  

In addition, the top-three issues she said HR leaders should focus on are:  

  • Reskilling employees to future-proof their job functions.
  • Redefining future work arrangements, for example, flexible working hours, working from home or a hybrid.
  • New and agile ways of working.

McKinley also said cultural change in a company’s HR must take a top-down approach and consider all facets of a company’s functions.  Concurring with Bhat, McKinley added that adopting technology would be the linchpin for HR strategies going forward.

She emphasised that technology adoption should not be done in a ‘one-size-fits-all’ way, but “personalised” in an employee-centric manner. This can be done by gathering feedback from employees and identifying their pain points to craft strategies that staff find acceptable and are willing and able to adopt.  

Agreeing with McKinley, Mira Soetjipto, Head of Human Capital, PT. Bank BTPN, Tbk, said technology adoption cannot take the “cookie cutter” approach. This is especially so when 74% of employees of a bank like BTPN are tech-savvy millennials who are impatient.

As such, the technological solution of a company must be agile to meet the expectations of this demographic of employees. Digital solutions and apps proposed should also resonate with them.   

In view of the talent war with startups and fintechs encroaching into the banking space, Soetjipto said strong branding and using the right communication platforms will be crucial in retaining talent. She added that the employee journey needs to be reliable, user friendly, customised and positive in order to attract and retain talent. 

On how HR leaders can show that their strategies can add value to the company, she said it boils down to three words: data, data, data. The business and HR functions in a company should speak the same language based on data. Sound HR data would provide vital information to the business function to make the right strategies.

She advocated that companies make decisions based on the inputs of four key personnel – CEO, CFO, CHRO and CIO – instead of the traditional CEO, CFO and CHRO. 

Wrapping up the webinar, Bhat said HR leaders would do well by following three pointers: 

  • Start with what is most important – crafting a HR transformation road map with the end goal in mind.
  • Stop working in silos – the HR function must be integrated to that of a company.
  • Accelerate the focus on employee experience and journey which will eventually translate to customer experience.

Click here to download the full webinar, which was moderated by Stephen Choo, Managing Director, DSRInsight.