With the varied business needs of its different divisions, it was important for the company to build a common branding as BreadTalk Group while ensuring that each division retained its unique nature and met the needs of the business and people, says Bryden Toh, Senior Vice President, BreadTalk Group.

Q How has BreadTalk Group's recruitment strategy evolved in recent times? How does this agenda fit into the bigger HR priorities?

Our organisation’s recruitment strategy is to build a strong employer branding that focuses on building up our culture, workforce and workplace. This agenda fits into the bigger HR priorities as it talks about retention of our employees through learning and development, employee welfare and benefits programmes, communication platforms and in the pipeline to build up a ready pipeline of leader and successors.

We work closely with our CEO by understanding how their business needs can translate into our people strategy, ensuring that we meet our business outcomes. This is done through monthly group business reviews and our recent project on 360 assessment of our talents to better understand our business needs.

Q What were the key business drivers behind this strategy, and how have you executed it successfully?

We do not really have a sole winning recruitment strategy, but instead we build a strong employer brand by focusing not just on bringing in the right talent, but also on other aspects such as our on-boarding experience and building up our communication platforms. We have executed it successfully by putting in place job trials, one to one buddy system and a robust orientation programme (just to name a few).

In terms of our communication platforms, we put in place town hall and employee tea sessions, a common WeChat communication platform and employee recognition schemes.

Q No execution is free from unexpected hurdles. In what shape or form did you experience challenges, and how did you overcome them?

With the varied business needs of the different divisions (Bakery, Food Atrium, Restaurant), it was important for us to build a common branding as BreadTalk Group while ensuring that each division retains our unique nature and we meet the needs of our business and our people.

While implementing in place initiatives that is a joint effort across all divisions, we constantly ensure that at the division level we have our differentiating value proposition and programmes to suit the needs of the individuals.

Q On to the most important part – results! How did you measure the ROI or milestones of this initiative, and what are you most proud of?

We measure our milestones by looking at improvements in our attrition rates and the take-up rates of the employee initiatives and programmes that we have implemented. However, what is most important is the feedback and employee testimonials that we have received from our employees!

Q What is one way your organisation stands out from others when it comes to attracting talent in the competitive landscape?

The unique business model of our company (Bakery, Food Atrium, Restaurant) allows employees to select from varied job positions based on the needs and aspirations of each individual. Within each division, we have in place unique recognition and reward schemes, learning and development programme and varied progression pathways.

We also have opportunities for employees to be exposed to overseas operations including short-term assignments, secondment and traineeship programmes to prepare them for leadership and technical roles.

Photo / 123RF

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