With a gold win for Employer of the Year and a bronze win for Excellence in Learning and Development at HR Excellence Awards 2020, Singapore, Daniel Tam Head of HR Singapore at Schroders Singapore recognises that while the organisation’s strong people development culture has led to positive pulse survey results, he doesn’t believe in sitting on one's laurels and will strive to review processes in order to be ready for future challenges.

Q What is your organisation's winning HR strategy, and what are some milestones you've accomplished along this journey?

We believe that the key success factor is that Schroders really invests in our people and we are very blessed to have the support and partnership from both senior stakeholders as well as employees in our HR initiatives. This is especially evident this year as we all go through an unprecedented time with the COVID-19 situation. With the management's support, we were able to go the extra mile for our employees through several COVID-19 related initiatives like various wellness initiatives, allowance to support the setup of their home office, delivering office equipment to employees’ homes, and more. Our various Employee Resource Groups have also contributed to this innovation.

Q How has this strategy helped you achieve your HR priorities, and what role has the leadership played in helping make this initiative a reality?

Our number one priority this year was to ensure that we support our employees where we possibly can through this challenging period. Other than the initiatives we’ve shared in the previous question, we also rolled out our flexible working arrangement globally and this will continue even when business resumes normalcy.

This is a recognition that the future way of working will change and this is to ensure that our practices support this change. This is only possible with support of the leadership of the firm at the highest level.

Q Unexpected roadblocks are part and parcel of executing any initiative. What were some of the barriers that you and your team experienced while rolling this out, and how did you successfully get past them?

With the flexible working being rolled out globally, we had to support our managers to ensure that they know how to manage the changes within their respective teams. Their way of managing the teams will also have to change accordingly as most of them will be managing a hybrid team where some will be working from home and some from the office.

To support them, we conducted manager sessions to share with them on how they can manage remote teams, how they should look at performance management and how to engage a team that has mixed working arrangements. We also ran focus group discussions at all levels to ensure that concerns are being heard and addressed with this change.

Q As evidenced by the win, this initiative clearly delivered some amazing results. What was your gameplan for measuring ROI? What are some proud achievements you can share with us on this front?

With our win, it was a combination of several initiatives as we needed to cater to the needs of different groups of employees. Overall, we are extremely pleased to share that feedback from our employees through the pulse surveys we’ve been running indicate that it is generating positive results with them.

Highlights of the survey results below:

  • 98% feel that the firm is interested in the wellbeing of employees
  • 93% feel proud to be associated with Schroders
  • 94% feel that they have the tools and resources needed to work productively from home for an extended period of time.
  • 93% feel well connected with their managers and teams during the Covid-19 period

Q What’s your secret to gaining stakeholder buy-in for your HR initiatives which contributed to your gold win for the Employer of the Year category? How are you going to work on further improving your ongoing HR processes and initiatives?

For a start, the firm already has a very strong culture in its focus on supporting, developing and investing in people. So that’s half the battle won! Our HR team’s objective is to ensure that we are constantly plugged in to know what our employees’ challenges are, what support they are looking for and how we can devise solutions to help them.

As we start to address these challenges, you build credibility with your stakeholders and naturally, they will lend their support when the time calls for it.

Post COVID-19, the work environment will change and the way we engage with our employees will also have to change, As such, we will be spending time to review our processes and policies to ensure that it is adapted to the new way of working. We will also need to exercise creativity in how we engage with a workforce that is hybrid in nature. It will be challenging but we are all geared up for the challenge!

Photo / Provided

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

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