These days everything is moving at a fast pace. We are all facing challenges that mark new ways of living, working, collaborating, as well as developing ourselves. The new normal opens up a world of opportunities for us to learn new things. In times of uncertainty and instability, it is not easy to simply find the right objective to change job profiles or simply be curious about available vacancies. The fear of not having the right expertise or skills can put a damper on taking certain career steps. Thanks to some leaders from the Supply Chain Management (SCM) team in China, a new program called “Ready to Develop” (R2D) was initiated. The management team support their employees in preparing them to professionally develop themselves.
Michael Haendel, Head of Supply Chain Management China & Asia/Australia answers some questions about the program.
How did the management team approach this initiative?
This initiative came to life based on the Siemens Global Employee Survey 2019 results. Some indicators illustrated that employees were not very happy with their career improvement opportunities at SCM in China. They expressed that they saw few career possibilities. The management team reacted to this feedback and put their heads together. One thing was for sure, the management team needed to have transparency about open positions and career opportunities within the company. At the same time, they wanted to have an overview of employees that wanted to develop their career. This was the trigger that kicked of the “Ready to Develop” program. A program that knows no limitations – only a growth mindset comes into play.
How did they identify candidates?
The managers had face-to-face discussions with the employees. They were also able to identify candidates via PMP dialogues and individual career development talks.
What exactly did you do?
After identifying the respective candidates, they combined the profiles and as soon as they found an open position, a comparison was made with the candidates and the open positions. This principle applied not only to SCM positions, but also several other management positions throughout various organizations. So far, they have identified almost 30 candidates in Asia and Australia. Viya Huang and Penny Zeng mentioned below are recent candidates who have benefited from the program.
What are the benefits for SCM, Siemens and for the customers?
As a management team, we should create career development opportunities for our employees. As for SCM and Siemens, we share know-how and experiences via this program. Empowering people is one of Siemens strategic priorities. This directly applies to our employees who should feel empowered to ask questions, take risks, and do what they think will most help our company and our customers and realize their full potential. We develop and enrich our employees in terms of their know-how and how they operate. Having talented and skilled people who deliver top performance is a benefit for Siemens and for our customers. With our joint insights and overview of top performers, we can create a much broader talent pool of experience and knowledge. A best practice that can genuinely bring value-add to the business.
What are your next steps?
We are currently working on an instant base. For example, if we are alerted that there is an opening, we start the review process based on the list of candidates. Furthermore, we plan to have a common succession planning across business units and divisions in close agreement with all the Chief Procurement Officers of the operating and strategic companies in China. With this overview, we can map our R2D candidates once the succession planning begins. As a next step, the advance planning for the R2D candidates will come into action.
A world of opportunities on a global scale
And indeed, there are examples of international delegations:
Why is this relevant for SCM and Siemens in general?
The world has become much faster and much more demanding. We can’t survive with silo thinking. We have to become broad-minded and we have to adapt to new requirements but at the same time we must have the right mindset to be ready to change the way we operate today in order to be more effective tomorrow. We need to be faster and chase opportunities. With this program, we are creating an impactful employee experience. There is a large amount of potential that needs to be identified within our company and by correctly positioning these employees, we are contributing towards our company’s success.
That’s why it’s always helpful and significant to leverage capabilities by pushing employees into new positions, motivate them to change their perspectives and to learn new things. If we have extensive experience, it will help us to adapt to the circumstances in a more agile manner. If we are open to trying out new things, we could easily become adjusted to the new environment, new challenges and business models that the new default way of working brings.