Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 26 October 2014





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'Build employee culture to boost performance'

Today, the role of HR has been radically redefined and more emphasis has been placed on effectively managing every aspect of the employee life-cycle, from talent acquisition, and performance measurement to employee compensation, Chairman, HR Cornucopia, Dinesh Weerakkody told the technical sessions of Annual Conference of the Chartered Institute of Marketing at the Waters Edge recently.

"This amazing shift in HR starts at the most fundamental level: helping to raise the bar on individual performance, for employees to realise their full potential and finally for the company as a whole," he said.

He said that strategic HR is ensuring that companies aren't leaving huge amounts of money on the table in the form of missed profits due to unrealised performance and productivity.

The first step, he said in unlocking a company's true potential is ensuring that employees understand how their specific job and role contributes to achieving the company's business objectives.

Without a consistent process of setting goals for each employee that fits directly to your company's objectives, they may be spending too much time on the wrong activities.

Weerakkody said, "Even though Lankan women now are better educated than ever before and are stepping into high profile roles, female participation in the labour market today is only 38% while male labour participation rate is around 85%".

Women in top management, he said are only 5%, that is despite 66% of the degree holders being women and they are ready to take on senior roles. However, he pointed that introducing legislation may not be the best way to increase the number of women in leadership roles.

Because it may not be fair for men to have men pay for social justice by promoting a disproportionate number of women and also to women to take jobs where they may not be the most qualified and where gender gives then an advantage.

Instead, what we need is to make sure that the talent pipeline is filled with competent women. This increases the pool of women and ultimately will increase the number of women being qualified for key jobs.

This may take some time, but it will ensure a firm deploys the entire work force productively and inclusively. As a country, Weerakkody said that Sri Lanka would need to have a labour regulatory framework that provides for flexible work arrangements that suits the needs of the world of work today.

Weerakkody, a former Chairman of the Commercial Bank and the Employees' Trust Fund Board said, "The amendments to our legislation that restrict women doing night work have to be changed to facilitate the breakdown of the 'traditional' office, with 'normal' office hours and people will develop 'portfolio careers' or have multiple consulting engagements at a time."

He said that increasingly in every market and country we will see people delaying retirement and staying longer in the workforce and multiple generations will, therefore, be forced to work together.



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