Excerpt taken from the 2008 HR Innovation Function "Overview of Judging Process" - presented by Mrs. Jennifer Anderson.
Miss Fern Hamilton, Vice President of HRMAJ
Members of the Board
Participating Companies in the HR Innovation Awards Competition
Ladies and Gentlemen
The Human Resource Management Association of Jamaica’s HR Innovation Awards Programme celebrates its 4th Year of existence. This evening, we will be celebrating creativity, innovativeness, effectiveness and excellence as you will see from the various initiatives our participating companies have implemented in their respective organizations these past five years.
As HR Professionals, it is good when we can come together to honour and celebrate with our colleagues, who have been making a difference in their organizations with various HR initiatives. When we think of it, Human Resource Management in all our organizations is the “cog” in the wheel which keeps it turning. It controls the speed, the smoothness, the efficiency and the manoeuvring capability. Without the cog, the wheel is useless!! So tonight, the “Cogs” are getting together to share in the success of fellow “cogs” who over the past five years have implemented successful initiatives in their organizations, which can also be labelled “Innovative” and effective.
My role this evening is to give you a quick overview of the HR Innovation Programme, a quick glimpse of the various initiatives from the participating companies, and acknowledge our panel of judges who worked really hard to ensure fairness, objectivity, accuracy and flawless “selectivity”! (How is that for innovation?!).
Since the launch of the first HR Innovation Awards Programme in 2005, we have been exposed to some really creative ideas, and have seen how well those initiatives have worked out as solutions to challenges faced by various organizations. The Award seeks to put the spotlight on creative and innovative initiatives and unique approaches our member companies employ to provide solutions to problems or challenges faced, which could hinder their progress in their quest for goal achievement.
Tonight we would like to acknowledge our five finalists:
· The Bank of Nova Scotia Jamaica Limited.
- Education & Training category - introduction of the Scotia Ambassador Awards Programme, which consisted of a series of internal competitions, inter-branch, inter-region and inter-Group
which had a combination of TVJ’s Schools Challenge Quiz, and Digicel’s Rising Star competition.
The aims of the programme were to:
o Reinforce Scotiabank’s brand and image among team members
o Promote a level of camaraderie among staff while integrating Core Values, higher levels of commitment to excellence, and the highest level of internal service.
o Build employee engagement in the Scotiabank Group.
- NB: Resulted in developing greater bonding between management and staff in each branch, professional growth and development for employees (both participants and supporters), and the creation of role models in seeking to reinforce the “Brand Scotia” throughout the organization. This initiative has also helped in motivating employees to be more customer-focused and outward- looking as they take active participation in community outreach activities.
· Hilton Kingston Hotel
- Award & Recognition Category. The Hilton had a very subjective award & recognition programme which did not boost employee morale. HR re-engineered this programme to allow for greater participation from staff and introduce objective measures which resulted in the following benefits:
o Improved customer satisfaction
o Encouraged employee initiative to go above and beyond in order to satisfy customer needs
o Allowed for recognition of creativity
o Empowered employees to respond creatively to solve problems and address customer issues.
NB: Boost Employee Recognition by fellow employees and managers and created special awards categories which in turn boosted self image and increased commitment to the Hilton Brand.
· The National Housing Trust
-Performance Management Category - NHT introduced a completely paperless, technology- based performance management system that allowed for greater efficiencies in resource use and improved customer satisfaction. This new approach to performance management created the following benefits:
- Improved linkages between the goal setting process and individual and departmental work outputs
- A more transparent and meaningful compensation system
- Realization of incentive payments which are linked to work outputs
NB: Employees are more motivated to perform their work more efficiently and effectively, which translates to goal achievement for the organization.
· Post & Telecommunications Department
- Employee Relations Category – Healthy Lifestyle Programme – introduced to encourage and support the development of optimal physical, psychological, social and spiritual well being of its employees. This project has developed in scope and depth to help both staff and members of the communities in the environs of the Department. Some of the staff benefits are:
o Staff welfare fund – which provides help with medication and emergency financial needs
o Counselling and first aid services
o Day-care and homework facility for employees’ children
o Education, health and motivational seminars
o Aerobics classes & sports club
o Development of two tranquillity gardens on the compound where employees can take de-stressing and relaxation breaks.
o Annual fun days, health fairs, culinary arts expositions have become community affairs.
NB: Results – improved staff morale, higher productivity, fewer illnesses and improved psychological temperament – less quarrels.
· RBTT Bank Jamaica Limited
- Education and Training Category - A Successful Change Management Programme – which impacted both management and staff resulting in organizational change for increased customer service. The benefits gained were:
o Improved process knowledge
o Improved work ethic
o Improved work relations
o Improved productivity
o Improved lifestyle changes e.g. self management, coping skills, stronger interpersonal relationships at home and work.
- NB: Seamless Change Management process which has become a Best Practice Benchmark throughout the worldwide RBTT Group.
We would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge our Chief Judge Mrs. Theresa Easy, Head of HR/Technology Innovative Centre, UTECH, and her team of judges –
- Miss Ilsa DuVerny, Managing Director, Productivity Plus
- Mrs. Nsombi Jaja, Managing Director, TQM Consultants
- Dr. Ainsley Deer, Managing Director, Training Dynamics & Consultants Limited.
The judging process was by no means easy.
Upon receipt of the applications, our judges had to review all documentation associated with each application, award scores, and then proceed to visit each company to determine first-hand, the effectiveness of the innovation, and the motivating impact it had on morale and productivity. This meant interviewing the HR Managers, and sample groupings of both employees and leaders.
The criteria used to judge the applications were:
a. The significance of the HR Innovation to organizational performance
b. The relevance and appropriateness of the solution goal(s) to solution efforts
c. The success of the solution in eliminating the negative impact of the problem
d. The solution’s contribution to the organization’s strategic goal
e. Creativity in extending the solution’s benefit to other areas within the organization
f. The impact of the HR solution on wider economic development
So you see, this process was not only intense and demanding, but time-consuming. Our judges must be commended for their volunteerism and the fact that they offered their services free of cost. We would like to offer to them a small token of our appreciation, and invite them to come up as they are acknowledged individually.
- Mrs. Ilsa DuVerney
- Mrs. Nsombi Jaja
- Mr. Ainsley Deer
- Mrs. Theresa Easy - Chief Judge & Leader of the team.
I’ll now hand over to our Master of Ceremonies, Mr. Mark Thomas, to introduce the various company initiatives and announce the winners.