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Study Identifies Post-Pandemic Topics for HR

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HR

Human Resources (HR) leaders trying to navigate a rapidly changing workplace environment now have a clear set of objectives to focus on: digitization, talent, and the future of work.

That is the central finding of a new report by Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and the World Federation of People Management Associations (WFPMA). The report, titled Creating People Advantage 2021: The Future of People Management Priorities, was on Wednesday, June 30, 2021.

BCG and WFPMA have collaborated on similar studies dating back to 2008, and this year’s analysis is the most comprehensive one yet. The authors surveyed more than 6,600 respondents in 113 countries and interviewed more than 30 executives at leading companies and startups worldwide, resulting in highly detailed quantitative and qualitative findings.

“Our results offer critical guidance for CHROs, senior people management executives, and all other leaders—including CEOs—aiming to build a future-proof workforce and workplace to support execution of their company strategy,” said Jens Baier, a senior partner at BCG and co-author of the report.

The report ranks 32 people management topics on two dimensions: the future importance of each topic, and companies’ current capabilities for addressing each one.

Assessing these dimensions in tandem enables the authors to highlight three areas where the need for innovative action is most urgent.

These are Digitization, including the use of new technologies such as people analytics, cloud-based applications, AI, and robotics; Talent, comprising strategic workforce planning, leadership development, upskilling and reskilling, and working with an ecosystem of employees, contractors, and other types of labour and the future of work, including more agile HR, the incorporation of “smart” work, and change management.

Another key finding in the report is the need to create personalized experiences for employees. Among survey respondents, 85% say that focusing on employee needs and expectations is a key success factor in the intensifying competition for talent. That figure represents the highest level of agreement in the entire study, underscoring the importance of an employee-centric approach.

“Companies today must navigate an exceedingly challenging business environment—and strong, proactive people management is the only way to ensure that companies have the right talent in place to succeed,” said Bob Morton, president of the WFPMA and a co-author of the report. “A data-driven, objective approach that places people at the front and centre of work can help HR leaders allocate scarce resources to the most urgent priorities.”

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Prudential Empowers Young Professionals Aspiring to be Change Makers

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Prudential young professionals

By Adedapo Adesanya

Prudential has reiterated its efforts to contribute to the growth and transformation of the economy and young employees by bringing a fresh perspective and a different way of thinking to any business.

This was the crux of the company’s recently concluded four-day immersive leadership programme, which saw young professionals from across the group hosted in Lagos.

The programme sought to inspire, empower and develop a community of young employees to become active change makers through innovation in order to create a future-ready Prudential.

Now in its third cohort, the Prudential Young Professional Programme is a grouping of 40 young employees aged 35 years and below from Africa, Europe and Asia i.e. Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Nigeria, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, the United Kingdom selected on the recommendation of their leaders.

The young professional programme was designed to connect young changemakers across the group to each other, mentors who are CEOs as well as senior executives, to learn and create solutions for our customers.

“With an average employee age of 37 years in Africa, we value thoughts and ideas from our younger employees. The program is not only designed to serve our customers to get the most out of life, but we also enable all employees to pursue their dreams and reach the highest potential, both personally and professionally. Prudential is counting on the young professionals, our next generation, to continue building our legacy as future leaders and create a future-ready Prudential,” said the Chief HR Officer for Prudential Africa, Mrs Maria Shipiri.

“As a just and inclusive employer, Prudential strives to create a work environment where our diverse and talented team can bring their authentic selves to the workplace in order to create, innovate, learn, succeed and grow,” said Mrs Nikki Davies, Group Diversity and Inclusive Director.

Harnessing on the creativity and energy of our young colleagues, the cohorts will collaborate across locations, businesses, and departments, generating ideas and prototypes and resulting in proposals to create a future-ready and competitive Prudential.

With over 540 employees in Africa 35 or less, the programme focuses on building a tight-knit cohort while simultaneously supporting individuals and uniting emerging leaders from various businesses to engage in value-based leadership discussions and hands-on workshops while also gaining visibility across senior stakeholders and co-creating solutions for the company.

As part of Prudential’s growth roadmap, we are significantly investing in our people and technology to build the capacity to serve more customers. Today, Prudential serves over 19 million life customers in Asia and Africa.

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IFC Picks Dahlia Khalifa as Regional Director for Nigeria, Others

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Dahlia Khalifa

By Adedapo Adesanya

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has announced the appointment of Ms Dahlia Khalifa as its Regional Director for Central Africa, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone.

In her new role, she will drive IFC’s strategy to create a more resilient and sustainable private sector to support the development and job creation in the region.

Ms Khalifa will lead IFC’s investment and advisory teams in Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, the Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Liberia, Nigeria, Sao Tome and Principe, and Sierra Leone. While these countries face challenges such as rising inflation and the effects of climate change, a young, vibrant, and entrepreneurial population presents opportunities for a more dynamic private sector.

In a statement made available to Business Post, it was revealed that the new regional head would be based in Lagos, Nigeria.

Speaking on her appointment, Mr Sérgio Pimenta, IFC Vice President for Africa, said, “I look forward to working with Dahlia and her team to deliver on new opportunities in the years to come, such as empowering more of the region’s entrepreneurs.”

On her part, the appointee said, “We are stepping up our work to empower the private sector and to work jointly with government and development partners to deliver greener, more inclusive, and sustainable growth in the region. I  commit to further strengthening IFC’s work so that together we can build the strong foundations for private and public sector partnerships.”

Ms Khalifa, an Egyptian and American national, was most recently the Senior Manager for IFC’s Creating Markets Advisory program in the Middle East, Central Asia, Türkiye, Pakistan, and Afghanistan region, where she and her team supported the removal of barriers to investment to strengthen the private sector and boost economic development.

Before joining the World Bank Group, she founded and managed financial services companies providing brokerage, corporate finance, private equity investing, and management consulting services in the Middle East and Africa.

As of September 30, IFC had an investment and advisory portfolio in Central Africa and Nigeria of more than $2.53 billion across financial services, infrastructure, and agribusiness and is continuing to grow its portfolio in health, manufacturing, and value chain development.

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Prudential Appoints Emmanuel Mokobi Aryee as CEO

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Emmanuel Mokobi Aryee

By Adedapo Adesanya 

Prudential Plc has announced the appointment of Mr Emmanuel Mokobi Aryee as the new Chief Executive Officer for Africa to oversee the operations of Prudential in its eight African markets.

The appointment seeks to centralise Prudential’s operations in Africa as well as strengthen and grow the business in markets where it currently operates.

In a statement, Mr Solmaz Altin, the Prudential Managing Director, Strategic Business Group, said he was pleased with Mr Aryee’s new role, noting that it will take effect on January 1, 2023.

“Africa is a strategic growth driver for our Group; building the talent and capacity to drive the next level of business growth is key and will foster greater efficiency and effective decision-making to help us deliver on our purpose of helping people in Africa get the most out of life by making healthcare and financial security more accessible and affordable,” Mr Solmaz added.

Currently, Mr Aryee is the Regional Chief Executive Officer for two regions: East & Central and West & Southern Africa.

The appointee is a well-known industry veteran with more than 29 years of experience in commercial leadership in Africa. His past experience includes turning around businesses on the African continent, moving Prudential to the number one market position in some of our countries, and gaining recognition as an innovative player. Over the years, he has nurtured employees and created room for talent to thrive.

Data from the Swiss Re Institute ranks the African continent as the second-fastest growing insurance market in the world after Latin America, with a total value of $68 billion. Yet, Africa has a large uninsured population, as reflected in the low insurance penetration levels currently at 2.8 per cent. This points to significant headroom for the expansion of the underwriting market, also given the population is expected to double to 2 billion by 2050.

To this end, Prudential noted that as a purely Asia and Africa-focused business, “we are investing in people and technology to build the capacity to serve more customers on the continent.”

Prudential serves over 1.7 million customers in Africa through a distribution network of more than 13,000 agents and 600 bank branches. After entering Ghana in 2013, the underwriter is now present in eight countries – Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Togo, Uganda, Zambia and Nigeria.

“We are confident that the Africa business will continue to thrive under the stewardship of Mokobi,” the company noted.

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