Vodafone has made history on the Romanian telecommunications services market, with a long and impressive list of first-time achievements. The company was the first to launch mobile telecom services in Romania under Connex brand, as well as the first 3G services, the first LTE network and 4G roaming services, and the first 5G network, to only mention a few. Almost two years ago, the company has entered a tranformation stage for becoming a technology player. Zsuzsanna Toth, Human Resources Director at Vodafone Romania, sat down with Business Review to reveal the HR story behind this transformation.
By Anda Sebesi
How would you describe your HR policy?
When defining our HR policy, we looked at what a Future-Ready Organisation meant and thought about how we could support this transformation through culture transformation, talent acceleration, and a focus on our frontline colleagues, by becoming an agile and efficient organisation and building a digital and personalised employee experience.
Our company has been on a transformation journey—both on the inside and the outside. This transformation is meant to bring new growth opportunities beyond traditional connectivity by offering our clients a complete proposition of connectivity and technology as we aim to become a trusted technology partner for all Romanians, at home and at the office. To support this vision, our company needs to change from within and align the organisational culture with the business strategy.. We need to grow our tech team through insourcing and reskilling as well as to bring more added value services to our EasyTech shops by training and hiring TechXperts who are able to provide end-to-end tech consultancy to our customers.
What were the main initiatives your company dedicated to its employees last year?
The transformation from a telco company into a technology one started almost two years ago. This is a group strategy that also aims to create a One Tech Team: a multicultural, pan-European team of up to 7,000 IT experts by 2025, built through recruitment and upskilling. Locally, we have also adapted our organisational structure and we are investing in leadership programmes, upskilling, and recruitment, currently searching for 70+ middle and senior IT colleagues to join our team.
Last November, we also started the culture change in Vodafone Romania by defining four key behaviours and engaging our leaders to align, understand, and commit to the change we all want to see in the organisation. Earlier this year, we extended this to all employees, engaging them in strategy and culture transformation through team conversations and gamification.
What is your strategy in terms of attracting and retaining talent in your company?
Vodafone was one of the first companies to officially announce that the hybrid working model (60 percent remote and 40 percent from the office) represented our long-term vision. At the beginning of 2022, we officially launched the new Telework Policy, which states that the way the activity is organised inside teams is flexible and gets decided together with direct managers, depending on the specific needs of each team. We offer part-time options for certain categories of employees (stores or call centres), which also supports work-life balance. It is also to our own benefit, because we have access to a much larger base of recruits.
3 HR challenges for the technology sector in 2023
- The competition for talent as both local and global employerscompete for the same resources;
- The digitalization and automation of HR processes and tools;
- Employee retention and finding the right proposition to keep them engaged and help them build a career within the company.