Out of the ashes

Written by
Changeboard Team

16 Oct 2013

16 Oct 2013 • by Changeboard Team

What are the biggest people challenges you face?

Simon Lloyd, HR director, Santander [SL]: We need to rebuild trust with our customers, which cannot just happen overnight. We must ensure that all people policies and processes are aligned with the culture we want to build.

John Robarts, regional head of HR EMEA, Credit Suisse Group [JR]: We have had to navigate the macro-economic landscape and ensure that, from a people perspective, we are well positioned operationally to compete in the market.

Danielle Harmer, HR director, Metrobank [DH]: We must recruit the right people at a pace that matches our growth, and ensure they demonstrate our core values. We aim to hire up to 200 new staff by the end of this year.

Jacqueline Davies, HR director, Financial Conduct Authority [JD]: Regulatory skills are incredibly ‘hot’ in the market at the moment, which means that the more successful we are the more in demand our people will be.

What are you doing to meet those challenges?

SL: We have been working for two years to create a more customer-focused culture by being clear about our values and behaviours and implementing policies and processes to achieve this. We are also listening to employees’ feedback on how we can improve as an organisation.

JR: As a regional executive committee, we coordinate very closely with business areas across the bank to make sure the human capital strategy can be refined to meet our needs.

DH: We ensure that our hiring and training processes are fluid, evolving and respond to the needs of our customers and colleagues. Our top priority is to surprise and delight them.

JD: We have adopted a new people strategy which positions us as an ‘academy employer’. We intend to invest more in leadership development, technical education and secondments, offering an FCA diploma which will become a benchmark for regulatory standards.

What's your most valuable advice?

SL: Be clear about what you want to achieve, plan well and be realistic about how long it will take.

JR: Learn how to move quickly to adapt to the changing business environment.

DH: Have a simple and clear vision that everyone genuinely understands so people can see what their impact is. Think about how you can create brand ambassadors in everyone you encounter, including candidates and suppliers.

JD: Be ambitious with your strategy and your HR team. We live in challenging times that require bolder and simpler practices.

What are likely to be your biggest HR challenges over the next 12 months?

SL: Staying focused on what we are seeking to achieve. We will also review and act upon the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards recommendations and the government’s response to them.

JR: Aside from adapting to changes in regulations, achieving our target of increasing the number of senior female leaders will be most challenging.

DH: Maintaining growth and creating new jobs for hundreds of people.

JD: Retaining staff. We have great people, whose skills are highly sought after in the market.