accelerate HR, andrew sam, jabil, recruitment, education, re-education, talent battle

Andrew Sam, Director, Global Talent Acquisition, Jabil urges us to relook at how we manage interns and new hires to ensure they feel like they are growing and progressing with the company.

Andrew Sam is the Global Talent Acquisition Director at Jabil, a world-leading manufacturing services provider. His past tenures include roles at GlobalFoundries and Applied Materials where he led key talent acquisition activities, including developing the executive recruitment process from scratch and playing a key role in business partnering, talent management, and developing and executing strategic HR goals.

He will be speaking at the upcoming Accelerate HR conference, on the topic 'Succession disrupted: Winning the battle for talent by resetting and building future-ready succession models'.

In conversation with HRO's Lara Samson, Sam talks about the need to equip all new hires with the skills needed and to offer limitless opportunities internally so that they won’t feel the need to look externally for challenges or career opportunities.

Interview excerpts below: 

Q What, in your view, are the top challenges and opportunities of leading HR in your sector and remit?

In my view, I see our top challenge as fighting a war on two fronts: at the frontline as well as in our own backyard; a war for talent as well as the war for retention. With digitalisation and the concept of remote work, the war for talent and retention has crossed the traditional geographical borders and it makes it extremely difficult for us to compete to hire and keep our workforce.

This is also an opportunity for us to rethink and evolve our workforce strategy to cater to the changing demographics of the talent pool and shifting the mindsets of not just the business leaders but also as HR practitioners to be more open to diversity and tap into non-traditional sources of talent such as the “gig” economy.

Q With most organisations looking to recover and rebound, where are you finding the headcount your team needs, and how are you coping with the talent shortage?

Our talent strategy will be twofold; build and buy. Building will be to grow and engage our talent bench and look internally to tap into our existing workforce and give them recognition and growth opportunities, as well as equipping them with the skills needed to perform the job. In some cases, employees will be upskilled or reskilled to perform the role or the shuffling of talents from different geographical locations in the form of work assignments/transfers or work rotation.

Buy will be bringing in new blood i.e., in the form of hiring fresh graduates to the company to rejuvenate the talent pool. During the interview process, we will incorporate the identification of HIPOs and education of hiring managers to hire for potential as part of leadership succession planning.

Q Brain drain is a real concern in Asia at the moment. In this time of manpower shortage, how are you and the team preparing to manage these talent-related challenges?

Education and re-education is pivotal to winning the battle. We need to begin with the fundamentals and start from the transition from internship to new hires so that they feel that they are growing and progressing with the company, equip them with the skills needed, and offer limitless opportunities internally so that they won’t feel the need to look externally for challenges or career opportunities.

Employees should be made to feel empowered to own their own career.

Q Looking towards 2023, what's the biggest change that you believe needs to take place in HR?

HR needs to evolve and embrace change. The pandemic has changed the way we work and traditional HR processes and methods needs to evolve to cater and support a different working model. Digital engagement and inclusion of employees will be key to retention.

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