Localization of HR: Combine international requirements

February 14, 2020

Solution RH en mode SaaS : GEFCO S.A. choisit Talentia Software

Nowadays, many companies with international operations, feel the need to be able to monitor clear and relevant indicators on a day-to-day basis, both globally and locally. For them, it is a question of guaranteeing a strong HR function that guarantees a global success programme that takes into account local characteristics and specificities.

Carrying out a global HR strategy

Human resources professionals working in an international context must implement a global HR strategy by relying on local HR relays. The pooling of tools, processes and skills is intended to support local HR managers in their day-to-day work and to simplify their lives to the benefit of a global and coherent HR strategy. Taking into account the challenges of globalization, they must deploy a “Group” vision that takes into account the Group’s diversity and the specific characteristics of each country, such as regulations, skills, professions, etc. Sharing experience, working together, team spirit and collaboration between Group and local HR Directors to differentiate global rules and principles from local ones is essential to the success of an international HR Director.  The challenge for Human Resources professionals operating on the international scene is twofold. They need to ensure that they understand the international context in which their company operates and how it operates in a specific context.

Key competencies essential for operating in an international context

As you have understood, thinking strategically and globally is essential. It is also necessary to have a solid personal network both inside and outside the company in order to be able to benefit from expert advice and knowledge of the issues and functioning of the company and its various ramifications. The HR professional is a mediator of knowledge, training and must know how to take advantage of ideas and advice through his network of personal and professional relationships.

Knowing the country, political, economic and societal risks at stake is also an essential element in order to effectively perform one’s duties. He must be able to manage the political complexity of the company and its ambiguities.

As a real influencer, he knows where to mobilize international energies, understand and manage cultural differences to carry out global projects adapted to country specificities.

Relying on tools capable of managing international affairs

International organizations frequently evolve HR systems must adapt to these many changes and be able to manage multiple languages, divergences and legislative differences at both global and local levels. The HRISs on which an international HR department relies must be designed natively to manage multi-country, multi-currency, standard and specific, access rights and views per user according to company and country, whether it is corporate or country specific, etc.

HR indicators, local requirements Vs group

More than other companies, those that operate internationally must be able to rely on reliable data and translate the reality of HR into figures with a global view but also precise by country or by department in order to be able to manage resources, skills and talents at group level.

Knowing how to measure the attractiveness of the company, the reasons for turnover, hardship, commitment, diversity and equity are essential indicators to be taken into account at the macro and micro levels to ensure the good HR health of the company at the glocal level.

HR data plays an essential role in corporate and local decision-making. It is therefore important for HR dashboards to be able to rely on reliable data from payroll and HCM tools to provide a forward-looking and realistic vision.

Data collection, attention to sensitive and personal data

The company must take into account several elements concerning the processing, creation of data or their protection. Among the amount of data already available in the existing system, the HR manager must identify which data is available and which is non-existent or inaccessible. The structuring and processing of the data can be complicated by the multitude of HRISs in use that do not talk to each other. Setting up a data culture means first of all setting objectives on what we want to measure and then connecting the systems that will allow us to track the data, which is often fragmented.

Another element to be taken into account is the regulation of personal data, which can vary from one country to another. For example, the DPMR has a strong impact on the data that can be collected, processed and communicated by HR in Europe. In some cases, there may be issues around the storage of data on nationals outside their own country. It is the responsibility of HR to ensure that all necessary measures are put in place to minimise potential security risks to personal and sensitive data.

Digital technology to facilitate communication 

Digital is revolutionizing the HR function by enabling the automation and streamlining of manual, repetitive and tedious HR processes to allow teams to focus on more strategic initiatives. On the other hand, it brings employees closer to the company, facilitating exchanges and improving the quality of life of employees in their daily lives.

Among other things, digital technology enables HR to :

  • Benefit from improved and increased HR functions thanks to Artificial Intelligence technology, chatbot, big data, Robotic Process Automation, etc…
  • Rely on alerts and notifications to remind you of upcoming tasks
  • Gaining a global view of the organization and planning for growth
  • Use existing workflows or adapt to specific business needs
  • Automate processes by ensuring data consistency, thus reducing inaccuracies
  • Enable HR and management to create customized reports and analysis
  • Allow employees to update their personal information, verify their leave entitlements, submit leave requests, record their development and career plans, and more.

The purpose of HR digitalization is of course to :

  • Gain HR marketing skills
  • Putting employees and customers on an equal footing
  • Continuous employee engagement
  • Improving the daily lives of employees
  • Refine collaborator knowledge
  • Create a collaborative experience