Developing BP’s ability to identify people who have an intrinsic desire to ‘go the extra mile’ is what really motivates Schuster. But for a company that hires about 10,000 people annually, this is a huge task.
“Get your hiring right and everything flows from there,” he says. “If you hire people who are inclusive and respectful, you can eliminate so many HR issues.”
For Schuster, a large company with a strong brand will never have a problem attracting quality talent, but he believes the task of HR is to ask: ‘How can we become better at predicting whether this person is a good fit?’
Schuster explains that as heavy external hiring can feel risky in terms of developing loyalty, BP has focused on building the skills of existing employees in recent years.
“In our industry, a build model is key,” says Schuster. “It takes a long time from exploration success to getting oil from the ground. If we identify people early in their careers, it’s easier to develop loyalty, increase their understanding of our business and produce a sustainable talent pipeline.”