Innovative logistics leader empowers its talent to drive scalability

“The availability of rich people analytics in Workday helps us to attract, develop and retain talent across all countries.” – Mike Dautzenberg, HR Director

Supporting innovation, growth and response to change

An intuitive and informative experience for all employees

Transformation of HR into a strategic business partner

Improved retention of talent across all markets

Like so many high-growth companies, frequent mergers and acquisitions meant that in 2018 H.Essers found itself with a highly fragmented business and systems environment. Nowhere was this more evident than in HR, with departments in different countries working independently of one another – and often using pen, paper and Microsoft Excel spreadsheets.

According to HR Director Mike Dautzenberg, “We had no smart tools to support essential factors like talent management, learning, recruitment and employee self-service. Without one single source of truth for reporting and analysis, our insights into the business and our budgets were limited. In short, the fragmented HR function was more of a bottleneck than a strategic partner to the business.”

Leveraging Workday to create “One. H.Essers”

Things clearly had to change. To streamline operations and build a strong foundation for future growth the company created a new business strategy. Built around the vision of “One. H.Essers”, this was focused on scalability and talent, empowered by a future-proof system connecting HR into a single international and scalable organisation.

Workday Human Capital Management was identified as the solution that would make this happen. As Dautzenberg adds, “We saw it as the key to a transformative process that would drive essential cultural change. Replacing our outdated technology landscape with one all-embracing system and user experience has enabled us to cover all countries with a single HR, analytics and reporting, recruitment, talent-management, onboarding and learning solution. Today, we can do so much more than just monitor and manage our people.”

Workday has helped us create one H.Essers for our most important asset: our people. We can now offer the intuitive and informative experience our employees expect.

Mike Dautzenberg, HR Director

Intelligent automation across all countries

As part of the initial Workday implementation, H.Essers replaced 16 different core HR systems across 14 countries in just 10 months.

“Before we did this, the lack of a single source of truth and real-time reporting led to major issues like budget overruns, uncertainty about our head-count figures and an inability to measure who’d received training,” says Dautzenberg. “Because there was no self-service, employees had to report any changes to HR, meaning we also spent a lot of time on transactional processing.”

Those days are gone. As Dautzenberg continues, “Now, we can analyse local operations centrally and make any timely adjustments that are required based on a single source of truth. As a result, the entire hire-to-pay process is intelligently automated across all countries.”

For Dautzenberg, the most important advance is in HR’s changed relationship with the organisation as a whole. “The eradication of manual tasks, together with the adoption of people analytics, has made us a properly strategic partner for the business. This is essential as we build strong foundations for future growth.”

Real-time, data-based decision-making

Before the implementation of Workday, it was difficult for H.Essers to align goals and achievements at both a national and international level. This in turn was impacting the company’s ability to respond fast and accurately to change and opportunities.

That has changed. “Today, with one source of truth provided by Workday, our business leaders have the real-time insights they need to take immediate action based on valuable data,” says Chief Information Officer Erik Lamoral.

“We’ve now got the scalable foundation on which our company can grow, innovate and respond to what’s next in an ever-changing world. As a result, the business is now much more flexible, and acquisitions or restructurings can be implemented much more quickly.”

Dautzenberg agrees: “Workday gives us the agility, alignment, insights and scalability we need to grow.”

We appreciate how Workday never stops developing new innovations, such as machine learning, to make better predictions and chat bots to further improve the employee experience.

Erik Lamoral, Chief Information Officer

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