HPB confirms Employer Partner status
Like many other companies, Hrvatska poštanska banka faced great challenges in 2020. Despite this, the area of human resource management has achieved significant development and HPB has once again confirmed its status as a top employer by winning the Employer Partner (CEP) certificate with a large increase in points in the assessed categories.
To find out more, we spoke with HPB’s HR Director, Ana Đidara, as well as team leaders responsible for good results in challenging times.
The greatest progress in the performance management process
"Through structured performance management, we have ensured systematic monitoring of the performance of all our employees and strengthened the further construction of a corporate culture focused on achieving results - a culture of excellence," said Goran Ferić, team leader for performance management and rewarding. He praised his colleagues from the team for the success of this project: “I especially emphasize our Eli Kačić who has been with the Bank for many years, knows every corner of it, almost all employees, and they know her, which is a huge benefit in implementing such projects. Our Tajana Merkaš also made an exceptional contribution, although she was only in the Bank for half a year at the time, she got to know its functioning extremely quickly, and added value to the project." Colleagues from other teams within HR also came to the rescue in challenging times: “Our Ankica Blažinčić, who ensured the technical functioning of the application, and Kristina Ivandić, who jumped in at the critical moment of implementation, onboarded in record time and supported line management in setting goals."
Care for employees, as pointed out by Martina Novak Vukuša, head of the team for labor and legal relations, is always in the first place for HPB, and in 2020 this was the main priority of the entire Bank: “Employees are provided with safe working conditions in accordance with epidemiological measures of the Civil Protection of the Republic of Croatia. A large part of the employees were sent to work from home, while for those who had to work on-site, all health protection measures were undertaken. Also, the HPB Health section has been opened on intranet, which contains useful information regarding the coronavirus pandemic, work from home, etc. ".
Workshops on psychosocial support, stress resilience and psychological counseling for all
"In addition to physical security, it was important for us to ensure the general well-being of our employees," adds Romana Ćaćić, team leader for employment and employee development. "For this reason, we conducted a survey of employee adaptation to work in the COVID-19 era, based on which we defined measures to improve the experience of employees. We focused on creating guidelines to help our employees in challenging times, organized an online lecture on stress resilience, as well as psychosocial support workshops for employees directly affected by the earthquake. We have also provided psychological counseling to all employees. "
Despite the challenging circumstances, the reorganization of the Bank was carried out in 2020 in order to strengthen its sales and strategic capacities: “The reorganization affected approximately 70% of employees thanks to excellent cooperation with the Office for Project Organization and Management and all business areas involved, and especially thanks to the work of colleagues from the team for legal and labor relations: Ankica Blažinčić, Divna Hrga and Zlata Kršlak, whom I would like to praise this time as well ", says Martina.
Digital HR to improve the selection process
The year 2020 at HPB was marked by the digitalization of HR processes: “The biggest change is the complete transition to an online tool for psychological assessment and online selection interviews. In order to implement this transition in a quality way, we have introduced introductory meetings with hiring managers in order to further prepare them for the best possible recruitment and selection. In addition, we have digitized the process of approving employment, and the whole team is especially proud of our colleague Monika Švogor, who created the application herself using the available tools. These changes have led to the improvement of the selection process - compared to 2019, "time to hire" and "time to fill" have been shortened by 40%," says Romana.
In addition to the duration of the selection process, HPB is also focused on the experience of candidates: “We want to know what our candidates think and what their experience is in our selection process. For this reason, we continuously conduct the Survey on Candidates' Satisfaction with the Selection Process, based on the results of which we implement measures to improve the selection process and the experience of candidates. "
Knowledge available to everyone
As Romana points out, pandemic conditions did not negatively affect employee education: “Thanks to our e-Classroom, we were ready when the pandemic hit - the percentage of employees who underwent some form of additional training in 2020 increased by 30% compared to the previous year. The pandemic has encouraged us to use this tool more efficiently and we can say that in 2020 there was a real decentralization of knowledge transfer where all users within the organization who need structured knowledge transfer use e-Classroom independently and contribute to greater availability of educational content to our employees.
In the year behind us, an onboarding process was implemented in order to ensure the most efficient orientation and integration of new employees into the Bank. "Feedback on Welcome Day is especially positive. New employees have the opportunity to meet colleagues from other organizational units that they would otherwise not have the opportunity to meet due to the high prevalence of work from home," adds Romana. "A successful team of three young colleagues - Ema Stulić, Monika Švogor and Kristina Ivandić - enabled the implementation of all these ideas and made the team for employment and employee development a more relevant partner in our business," he said.
Focus on strengthening company culture
In the period ahead, as Ana Đidara, HR Director, points out, the focus will continue to be on strengthening the company culture based on HPB corporate values, which includes intensifying activities that support the culture of achieving goals. "Our plans certainly include: further improvements of performance management systems and reward systems, further development of competency-based management systems, defining competency models in all areas and linking them with other HR systems (rewarding / education and development), defining new work models, employee care through examining the attitudes of employees and defining measures to maintain and increase employee satisfaction, continue the digitalization of HR processes, strengthening the HR IT infrastructure and improving HR controlling and even more active management of HR costs. These are generally areas that will be in our focus, and within them are a large number of activities that support these global initiatives."
"It is crucial for a successful organization to have competent and satisfied employees, but also organizational infrastructure in terms of clear responsibilities and processes and supporting technology that is deeply imbued in all our activities. In 2020, we saw how important technology is to us, not only in technically, but for communication too, and in fact it largely shapes us as an organization. Market dynamics and external circumstances have once again shown us that openness to change and adaptation, listening and anticipating changes in the market and internal understanding of the development phase in which the organization finds itself are becoming increasingly important competencies of the organization and those excelling in understanding this will be sustainable in the long run ", concluded Ana.