Talent & Tech Asia Summit 2024
Winning Secrets: How GCash's multifaceted HR & people strategy increased its employee engagement score

Winning Secrets: How GCash's multifaceted HR & people strategy increased its employee engagement score

Robert Conrad Gonzales, Chief People Officer, tells us how GCash fosters a positive work environment which supports its employees' growth, and ultimately, contributes to its success.

GCash's multifaceted HR and people strategy emphasises employee wellbeing, development, and a culture of excellence. From its total rewards philosophy to to strategic talent acquisition initiatives, the team has dropped its attrition rate from 26% to 15%, while increasing its engagement score from 83% to 87%

These comprehensive strategies have also won GCash a wide range of awards at the HR Excellence Awards 2023, Philippines.

  • Bronze in Employer of the Year
  • Bronze in Excellence in Talent Acquisition
  • Silver in Excellence in Leadership Development
  • Silver in Excellence in Total Rewards Strategy

In a catch-up with HRO following the wins, Robert Conrad Gonzales, Chief People Officer, tells us how GCash fosters a positive work environment which supports its employees' growth, and ultimately, contributes to its success.

Q Congratulations on your top performance at the HR Excellence Awards! How has your HR and people strategy contributed to your success this year?

GCash's success this year is attributed to a multifaceted HR and people strategy that places emphasis on employee wellbeing, development, and a culture of excellence. The total rewards philosophy, which links compensation to performance, has motivated employees and fostered a high-performance culture. Moreover, the talent acquisition team's strategic initiatives, such as streamlined hiring processes and partnerships with educational institutions, have played a pivotal role in attracting top talent, contributing to our industry leadership.

The commitment to psychological safety through the Uplifting Leadership programme has created a supportive work environment, promoting individual and collective growth. These comprehensive strategies have not only driven employee engagement but also positioned GCash as a top employer not only in the fintech industry but across the corporate landscape.

Looking back at your achievements, what aspect of your HR initiatives are you most proud of and why?

We take immense pride in the success of the Uplifting Leadership programme, a transformative journey that prioritises employee wellbeing and psychological safety. This programme, tailored to our unique culture, has empowered employees, fostering a sense of belonging and purpose-driven leadership. The tangible impact is evident in our outstanding engagement scores, reduced attrition rates, and recognition from equally prestigious award-giving bodies. The Uplifting Leadership programme reflects our commitment to continuously foster a positive work environment which supports our employees' growth, and ultimately, contributes to our ongoing success.

Q During your HR journey, what were some significant obstacles you faced, and how did you overcome them to achieve excellence?

Overcoming high attrition was one of the most significant challenges we faced. This pushed GCash's HR team to persevere and adapt. Our total rewards team implemented Project Ascend, which significantly adjusted salaries and enhanced benefits for employees based on their feedback. We established a culture of trust by enhancing our compensation & benefits to exceed market standards and to recognise employee contributions to the organisation.

We knew, though, that we had to further build on this trust in order to retain and further attract talent. We wanted to deepen our employees’ reasons for being part of the company. This is why our talent management team launched several leadership development programmes to instill an improved workplace culture. This includes 'Headstart' (for employees across levels), 'Transcend' (for tech talents), 'Accelerate' (for high-performing talent), and 'Uplifting leadership' (a tailor-fit programme teaching psychological safety, purpose, workplace belongingness, among others). Additionally, our engagement team doubled down on wellbeing activities, launching the 'Alagang GCash' programme to support employees holistically.

All these contributed to decreasing our attrition rate from 26% to 15% and increasing our engagement score from 83% to 87%.

Transparent communication, effective programme quality prioritisation, and a focus on continuous improvement ensured that our HR initiatives thrived even in challenging times. We observed that in doing so, not only do we provide an impactful employee experience, but also attract previously hard-to-find talents. The resilience of our HR teams has been key to overcoming obstacles and achieving excellence.

How does your organisation measure the success and impact of your HR initiatives?

GCash employs a holistic approach to measure the success and impact of HR initiatives. Key metrics such as engagement scores, attrition rates, and recognition by external entities highlight the positive outcomes of our HR strategies. Additionally, the achievements of the talent acquisition team, including winning talent awards and achieving substantial cost savings, serve as tangible evidence of the impact of our HR initiatives on the overall performance of the organisation.

In what direction do you see the HR/people function evolving in the future, considering the emerging trends?

Looking ahead, GCash envisions the HR/people function evolving by incorporating the Uplifting Leadership programme into new hire orientations and individual development discussions, further nurturing internal talent. The total rewards team aims to enhance compensation and benefits through initiatives such as a comprehensive retirement plan, diversity and inclusion measures, and enhanced flexible benefits options.

Talent acquisition will continue supporting employee growth and engagement through internal mobility processes and diversity and inclusion plans. GCash remains committed to employee recognition, social impact, and continuous improvement, aligning with emerging trends to create a positive and inclusive work environment.

Read more interviews on why organisations have won trophies for their HR practices - head over to our Winning Secrets' section!

Lead image / Provided

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