On December 5, the “HR CONFERENCE 3in1: People, Culture, Future” forum took place in Dnipro. The event was attended by over 100 representatives of various companies of Dnipropetrovsk region. The representative of Alef Corporation, its HR-director Ms. Marina Alekseychuk, also participated in the event.
The “MOST-DNEPR” news agency became aware thereof at the scene of the event.
One of the founders of the HR-go community, Ms. Yulia Kuzmitskaya, reported that the “HR CONFERENCE 3in1: People, Culture, Future” forum is being held in a workshop format, taking place over one single day. The agenda of the conference included presentations by 10 speakers.
“As of today, we are holding the third large-scale conference in Dnipro, bringing together many participants from all over Ukraine (from Kiev, Odessa, Zaporozhye, Poltava, Kharkov). During the event, seven representatives – representing not only their own businesses, but also various urban communities – will take the stage at the discussion panel. All forum participants will receive the highest possible amount of information, since we`ve very carefully approached the selection of content, and have
been preparing for this event throughout all preceding year – by collecting statistics, as well as participants` feedback on what they needed. Therefore, this conference should be an accurate hit in regards to the needs of participants and should also be quite valuable for them”, she said.
During her speech, Ms. Marina Alekseychuk, the HR Director of Alef Corporation, reported on how the company works with staff, what it does for it and what methods it uses.
«The customer analysis and the feedback from the end users of our services»
At some point, we`ve asked ourselves: does our customers really want to keep returning to shopping malls and keep buying apartments that our company is building?
Apartments in the complexes that our company builds are divided into three categories: the shopping mall visitors, the commercial property tenants, and the residential property owners. In order to start the analysis, it was necessary to interview each type of our customers, never mind that they were all different and the communication channels were all different too. Therefore, we took advantage of reviews on social networks left both by the visitors themselves and the internal polls. At some point, we realized one very important thing – people who conclude real estate rental contracts are far from always being the end users of our services. In this regard, the HR department, the marketing service and the commercial department conducted simple surveys in which we kept asking our tenants: how comfortable are they for working? In the “comments” column, a lot of notes were left – someone was pointing to the loud music, someone said that the cleaning lady comes too late, and for someone she came too early, etc. It was very easy to make such corrections, it’s just that no one has asked our customers about such matters before. Having finished these surveys, we`ve realized that we still have something to work on, as well as still have the room to improve the service.
«New standards and the issue of misunderstanding»
In this regard, the brand new procedures for performance of services as well as new standards for the appearance of employees (security, cleaning staff, administrators) were prescribed, which, of course, were then regularized by classroom training.
The implementation of such new standards was not easy. At first, there was absolutely no feedback understanding. Small wonder, because these people have worked under the old standards for many years, and just got used to it. Yes, the employees of these basic positions were all with their own history and different living conditions, different families, they all had higher or secondary education, and all of them had to be brought to one specific standard.
«Culture comes from within»
The process of transformation of corporate culture is always painful, sometimes there are even losses along the way. But in the end, we`ve got people wearing neat uniforms, girls with beautiful make-up and well-groomed hands, but then we`ve got new problem – they all were only carrying out the requirements narrowly prescribed in the standards, while showing absolutely no initiative. In other words, the administrators were always ready to strictly adhere to the standards prescribed in the procedures, but they could not always navigate the issue when the situation went beyond the procedures and called for application of an unconventional approach.
Our culture comes from within. It is very difficult to be put on paper or to it get across, because each case is special.
«Rebooting the project»
Alas, all this hard work did not lead to the desired result. Therefore, we`;ve decided to apply a different approach, introducing it among all shopping malls of our corporation and, in addition to direct involvement of service managers, we“ve thought to create training videos regarding the same standards. In a game form, intended for adults, so to be as understandable and comprehensible as possible.
For me, the most important result of this project was that our employees changed their approach to their work process.
Also, in 1 month the percentage of negative reviews decreased from 29% to 8% (the data according to the statistics from Facebook and Instagram), we`ve pulled a phantom shopper, and all employees successfully passed the test.
«Making working professions more significant, ultimately focused on the corporation employees»
Every company faces an outflow of personnel at some point. We understand how to work with middle and top managers, however, why no one out of ten persons invited for a line operator interview came remains a mystery. The channels of communication with job vacancy seekers are changing dynamically. That is why the President of the Board of the Alef Corporation Mr. Vadim Ermolaev decided to start the process of increasing the significance and prestige of these professions, ultimately focused on our employees.
For this purpose, our corporation has two types of focus areas:
The “Best in Profession” competitions – a contest where all representatives of working professions can show their professional qualities and compete for the title of the best specialist in the corporation. Media are invited to cover the competition, and employees, becoming the central figures of the news, get to feel an interest in performing their work and the significance thereof.
The “Heroes in Overalls” project, which enables the plant employees to feel like “celebrities”. Its purpose is to show the stories of success of people working in industrial enterprises. Who are its heroes? Are they the people who began their careers as lathe operators or assembly workers, and eventually becoming heads of workshops? Or are they the ones who destroy the stereotypical perception of the worker? For example, during the project we`ve found a machine operator who gives salsa lessons in his spare time.
The project helps the employees of the plant to “open up” – to show a personal vision of their profession, and to shape an image of a modern worker at the factory. The global goal of the project is to increase the attractiveness of such professions.
For your information: the Alef Corporation unites diversified businesses that work in the segment of development, production of building materials and the agricultural sector.
The President of the Board of the Alef Corporation is Mr. Vadim Ermolaev. The Vice-President of the Board of the Corporation is Mr. Stanislav Vilensky.