A live demo on in-house HR team driving the digital HR agenda and five interactive sessions each facilitated by a table moderator were among the highlights of HR Tech Interactive 2016, Malaysia – notes by Aditi Sharma Kalra.

A live demonstration on how Digi is driving the digital HR agenda with a number of custom apps, five interactive sessions each facilitated by a table moderator, and presentations on how technology can transform the HR function - these were some of the highlights of HR Tech Interactive 2016, Malaysia.

Held on 6 September 2016 at Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral, this second edition of the annual, invitation-only HR technology event, produced by Human Resources' Evon Yew, saw more than 100 HR leaders discussing the state of HR technology in Asia.

[Photos from the conference, HR Tech Interactive 2016, Malaysia]

The conference was opened by Bilal Waris, the head of talent acquisition and management at Digi, who has spent more than 10 years using technology for improving customer experience and processes, and is presently tasked with driving Digi’s digital HR agenda.

He inaugurated the session with a live demonstration on how Digi has been able to marry its culture and technology together to deliver employee experiences.

Showcasing some of the tools that Digi has developed using both in-house and external support, he points out the organisation witnessed 101 structural changes last year – "an extremely nimble organisation with a high pace change."

In response, Digi developed a tool whereby, any line manager who is undergoing a restructure, can head to their HR business partner  (HRBP) – feed in all details into the tool, for example, what level the changes are expected in, what kind of movements in role, etc. Upon the click of a button, the line manager is presented with a projection on the expected costs of such a restructure.

“As a result, the HRBP’s role has changed from transactional to much more strategic looking,” said Waris. “Even if data is unstructured, we have to take the effort to structure. Look into insights from the past and take these back o the organisation.”

Following him was a panel discussion to explore the key considerations of HR practitioners in assessing new technologies, moderated by Yaj Malik, EVP and managing director, Sage.

On the panel were experienced practitioners Michael KY Khoo (regional HR director, International Rescue Committee); Stanley Alphans (HR shared services leader, APAC, Kimberly-Clark); Then Sik Kwang (head of human resources, DPDHL IT Services); Derick Khoo (regional sales manager, SAP); and Azaharin Abd Latiff (senior VP group HR operations and projects, AmBank Group).



After a networking tea break, we made way for the day's first interactive session, an aspect that makes the conference unique. Throughout the day, delegates get the opportunity to break out into five on-table interactive discussions, each facilitated by a moderator.

The topics up for discussion were: big data talent analytics; mobile HR; HR cloud; social media and collaboration; and next generation recruitment tools.

With that, we moved into a keynote led by two business leaders, Aju Murjani, managing director ASEAN, Excelity Global Solutions; and Roy Prasad, chief executive officer, i-HR Consulting, who spoke on the impact of SMAC - social, mobile, analytics and cloud.

[Photos from the conference, HR Tech Interactive 2016, Malaysia]



After that presentation by the duo, we dove straight into another interactive session, for which table moderators included Yaj Malik, EVP and managing director, Sage; Kamini Kanagasingam, head of service delivery, HR, Digi; Chandralakshmi Thiruchelvam, director compensation and benefits– Asia, Western Digital; and Monir Azzouzi, head of performance and development, Maxis.

Up next, after a hearty lunch, was a speaker with more than 14 years of experience around driving HR technology and integration projects across New Zealand, UK, Ireland, Singapore and Thailand – Sharma KSK Lachu, CEO, Accendo HR Solutions. His presentation was around the digitalising of HR functions for selecting, developing and retaining to talent.



The post-lunch session saw consecutive interactive sessions, where delegates enjoyed table conversations facilitated by Alok Kumar, CEO, cloud services, Excelity Global Solutions [pictured below]; Lisa Wong, HR and administration director, Land Pacific Development; and David Holloway, corporate sales director, AVADO, among others.



The presentations were ably concluded by Leny Januar, business development manager, Sage, who has more than 20 years of experience in HR and payroll solutions, across customers in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Thailand and Brunei. She shared the story of how the advantages of digitised HR strategies can be harnessed to boost efficiency and reduce costs.

[Photos from the conference, HR Tech Interactive 2016, Malaysia]

That led nicely to the final interactive session for the day, which saw experts such as Hari Nair, head-business partnership and continuous improvement, BASF PETRONAS Chemicals; Sharma KSK Lachu, CEO, Accendo HR Solutions; and Vivian Chu, regional HRBP and head of HR services, Ecart Services, as facilitators.



All 10 moderators then came together for the final session of the day, a rapidfire round in which they summed up their key findings from hosting discussions on five topics across five delegate tables. With that, the Human Resources team closed the conference, seeking the feedback of all attendees via an online feedback form.

Human Resources would like to thank all sponsors and partners that led to the success of HR Tech Interactive 2016, Malaysia:

  1. Gold sponsors: Accendo | Excelity Global Solutions | Sage
  2. Silver sponsors: Avado | NTT Data Business Solutions | Unit4
  3. Exhibitors: iTalent | Ramco Systems | Rolling Arrays | Symphony