Digital Talent Conference Shows how to Attract new Generations

HR

A joint chamber Digital Talent Conference has shed light on the issue of attracting and keeping the right people in the right roles in a rapidly digitalizing business environment.

KPMG’s Róbert Mántó speaking at the Digital Talent Conference.

The April 16 event was organized by the Netherlands-Hungarian Chamber of Commerce (Dutcham) together with SwissCham Hungary and in cooperation with the British Chamber of Commerce in Hungary, the Danish Business Club and the Swedish Chamber of Commerce in Hungary.  

HR transformation head Róbert Mántó, of principal sponsor KPMG, explained that the four industrial revolutions have brought the digital frontier closer than ever.  

“The virtual and physical worlds are not so far away from each other anymore,” he said. “In every minute, 30 jobs are replaced by robots they said at the last World Economic Forum,” he added. He noted that the number is probably a conservative estimate; by 2027, about ten million jobs might be lost to robots in the United States alone.  

“Robots work all day, hand in no notices, and overtime is self-explanatory,” he pointed out. Indeed, citing figures from a KPMG study, Mántó said that some 99% of CEOs report that they preparing for digitalization challenges.  

“HR needs to find the role of each generation in the new world. I would start thinking about how I can put employees into higher-value services,” he concluded.

Telenor’s chief human resources officer Judit Endrei-Kiss talked about the challenges of digitalization in the telecommunications world. She considers all employees working in fields like IT, business intelligence and online channels digital talents. Yet the latest generation of need a new approach.

No Herding

“They can think digitally and in digital opportunities, these solutions are present for them in every second of every day,” she noted. “While we are trying to herd them into structures, they do not like it, as they have a different, more grandiose mindset. The future of companies is not hierarchical and bureaucratic, but self-driven.”

How to find these people? According to Endrei-Kiss, not by putting up an ad on a job portal. “Digital talents cannot be motivated by traditional HR tools like long-term incentives.”

The next presenter was László Adrián Spiller, leading IT recruitment advisor at the Adecco Group. Elaborating on the same problem, he said that due to candidate scarcity, people need feedback in time to prevent them from moving on.  

Spiller also pointed out, “While robots may take over lots of routine jobs, they can open up more creative positions for employees.” He argued that successful recruitment largely depends on getting out to the field, even sitting down with candidates for a beer.

This need for a personal connection was also emphasized by István Lám, co-founder and CEO of Swiss-Hungarian encryption specialist startup Tresorit, which gained international attention by announcing an USD 50,000 contest for hackers around the globe to crack their encryption. Nobody succeeded.

“Our office turns into a clubhouse every weekend. We have a daily BBQ on the rooftop, and this was not initiated by the management, it came from below. Still, the management supports and finances it,” he noted. “We call it an update of informal systems.”

Tresorit employees have access to a giant coffee machine, and even a beer cooler every day. The catch? All of these facilities are in one large community room, prompting interactions and making friends with fellow colleagues. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why the core of Tresorit’s team has stayed together even several years after the 2011 launch.

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