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An interview with Edward Shelton (Talent Management Advisor - Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency)
It is now universally accepted that the human capital is the most valuable asset a corporation possesses. In Saudi Arabia, there is a huge paradigm shift underway for human resource managers. For long HR had been viewed as a mere logistical function, however as corporations seek ways to stay relent in a highly competitive environment, HR is being embraced as a critical business function that directly impacts an organization's bottom line. Here's Edward Shelton's exclusive interview with the 5th Annual Asset Management conference team on the evolving role of human resources in Saudi Arabia.
Talent Management Advisor
Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA)
1) What does employee engagement mean to you?
Employee engagement is when employees understand the organization's mission, goals and values and emotionally relate to them. It is their willingness to put in extra efforts and go beyond without being compelled by rules and regulations.
You can see the traits of engaged employees or the workforce when there is an obvious extra effort being put, they take ownership and get results, they seek new challenge, they show selflessness, get involved without being compelled to and finally they speak with pride...about the company and what they do.
2) How do you see the role of HR evolving in the KSA in the next few years?
I see the future for HR move from current transactional administration to a more strategic human capital partnership. HR must become involved with HR strategy execution, maintain its administrative efficiency, employee satisfaction, and become the change agent for all human capital. Finally, we must wean ourselves off consultant firms and develop HR talent nationally and in house.
3) What tech concepts do you feel the HR industry should be picking up today?
Technology is crucial for the future in KSA. We must be on the cutting edge for recruiting (LinkedIn etc.), selection and assessments, succession planning, leadership development and in house communications.
4) Your thoughts on Gamification.
Gamification is emerging as a critical tool to motivate employees and realize true leadership development. We have recently used an Aramco expert Dr. Michael Commini to explore the development of gaming for emerging leaders in our leadership forums. The concept is welcomed by Generation Millenniums and is a high priority for us.
5) What are your three tips for companies looking to develop leadership within their employee pool?
- A good succession and high potential program
- Ongoing full assessment centers that includes 180/360, team, work environment and leadership tools.
- A selection and promotion guide that use and measures employee satisfaction, engagement and boss performance.
6) Do you have any predictions for trends in hiring and training in the Gulf region in the next few years?
- Women in the workforce will be an important source for great new talent.
- Hiring a balanced mix of A, B and C qualified professionals, a balanced work force.
- Exporting HR services and talent to the world.
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