‘Balancing All 3 Legs of the Stool’: Today’s Triple Transformation Facing HRBPs
In light of ‘HR Business Partner in the New World of Work’ returning to BeNext from September 20th — October 22nd, 2021, we are sharing some of the insights we gained from the LIVE panel discussion, leading up Dave Ulrich’s masterclass from our previous HRBP program cohort.
Our experts explored in depth the evolving role of the HRBP in today’s post-pandemic context: How has it changed? How can the HRBP continue to add value to the business? How can we take better care of our workers to ensure they reach their objectives?
We also examined the wider issues facing HRBPs in today’s unstable working world, as well as how to address opportunities for accelerating growth and attracting the next generation of talent.
Our panel discussion was hosted by Peter Dolenc, Principal — PeterD & Company with contributions from Saurabh Nigam, Vice President of Human Capital — Omidyar Network India and Michael Kim, Head of HR APAC — Spotify.
Peter opened our panel discussion by addressing the intention of the program to help our learners navigate the triple transformation facing HRBPs today:
- How do we approach redesigning how we work?
- How do we focus on reskilling HR to be able to support changes to our business?
- How do we reconfigure the organization to be more adaptable to the new needs of the customer and get closer to our vision and purpose as an organization.
Referring to these “three legs of the stool”, Peter asked Saurabh and Michael for their perspectives on if there are any impacts to only focusing on 1 or 2 aspects of transformation. Saurabh responded, “they are all quite interlinked” and then expanded on the third transformation bringing into context the need for organizations globally to pivot as they reprioritise their objectives.
“The way we design our organization is a direct function of what you are looking to achieve. What are your objectives? What are your goals as an organization? That is fundamentally shifting.” Saurabh maintained that we will have to figure out the right design for our organization as our objectives and priorities continue to change, and this naturally plays into big changes to how we work.
The homogeneity of the working environment has transformed and we can no longer engage our colleagues in water cooler chats. How do we redesign the virtual workplace to accommodate this shift and maintain connectivity? How do we assess the pulse of the team? How do we ensure our workers are equipped for and aligned with the new vision of our organizations? Sauarabh maintained that “we can’t go back to our old ways of working from 18 months ago, because that has shifted and transformed”. In reference to the three transformations, Saurabh summarized “you cannot pick one over the other because one follows the other”.
In agreement, Michael furthered the discussion by highlighting COVID as a major catalyst in accelerating the critical role played by the HRBP within organizations to lead change management. He also mentioned how this has fast-tracked us into unforseen progress: “Today our role as HR practitioners has never been more important and more exciting”. Why is it so important that we take charge and lead this? As Michael simply puts, “we are the subject matter experts” in this space as HRBPs. “Let’s not forget the last two words in the title: business partner.”
Michael maintained that we are the “critical strategic link to this unknown critical space” and discussed the two major consequences of failing to take the lead, focus, and guide our business leaders:
- “Your company and business will suffer. Your commercial growth and survivability of your business will suffer if you don’t get the people piece right”.
- “You will lose the war for talent.” Add to the mix the COVID pandemic with the already-Changing landscape of Millenials and Gen-Z continuing entering the workforce; we have to consider how we embrace these younger generations of workers in today’s context.
Peter rounded off the opening discussion of the HRBP triple transformation by framing the “unchartered territory” of our current context, as an interesting “forced experiment” where we can no longer go back to where we were 18 months ago after all the innovations of the hybrid work environment.
In reference to the common question asked by leaders, “Who’s doing it well?”, Peter insists, “no-one yet as we’re all still figuring it out!” As HR partners — experts in all things people — “we have to step up and lead that conversation and be curious about what might be and what might work best for our organizations.”
We are looking forward to welcoming our next global cohort in September!
Join the peer learning community and get involved in the conversation where we will be rejoined by our experts and a new peer-learning community!
Registration is open:
‘HR Business Partner in the New World of Work’ - September 20th — October 22nd, 2021
Visit benext.club to find out more about our programs this season.