Posted on 13 Apr 2015

The Challenge

Officeworks is Australia’s leading retailer and supplier of office products and solutions for home, business and educational needs. With more than 150 stores nationwide, the greatest challenge for the company’s service-oriented culture was to create a single, well-defined ‘One Officeworks’ approach mirroring its organisational philosophy of “support for life”. Aligning talent management practices and employee performance to the company’s overall strategy required a renewed focus on a number of elements, including:

  • Improving the quality and performance of internal talent.
  • Aligning people performance with the company’s guiding principles.
  • Driving a culture to support organisational goals.
  • Continuing to support a culture of proactive, engaged people who are passionate about working for Officeworks.

Officeworks’ HR team set the challenge of diving deep into each of these elements in order to define key areas of focus needed to achieve its organisational goals. The first step was to recognise the areas in the current talent management process that needed to be improved:

  • Breaking down the existing silos between stores as well as departments to help individuals who are good at working in their niche areas take advantage of the benefits of the wider organisation.
  • Replace its previous decentralised approach to managing talent which had resulted in a lack of visibility and defined parameters, with no two stores managing talent the same way.
  • Address the varying retention levels across the organisation and the differences in work types, generational concerns and various client bases that added complexity to the resourcing and retaining of talent.

The Focus

To meet these goals and bring about the improvements necessary to transform its talent management strategies, Officeworks’ Organisational Development team identified in consultation with the business, four key driving factors for their continuous improvement program: Performance as Usual, Enabling Self-driven Development, Automated Processes and Succession Visibility at the store level.

In order to deliver the ‘One Officeworks’ approach to talent management across the business, the company had to ensure its HR processes – from performance management to succession planning – were well defined. Moreover, the company recognised the value of implementing an automated delivery mechanism via new technology to ensure consistent delivery. As a result, the company sought an automated solution that could transform and standardise its talent management strategies, leading to its selection of PageUp’s Unified Talent Management System.

The Solution

The first step in the implementation was the succession planning process. The Officeworks team developed comprehensive succession profiles and a process to enable that all critical roles within the business, including store managers, have at least one successor with defined career and development plans in place. The PageUp Succession Management module then facilitates the process of highlighting critical roles, identifying success from within the business and creating and assigning effective career and development plans.
The return on investment for this succession strategy is clear, as Officeworks now benefits from:

  • Reduction in time to run the Succession process from up to four months to eight weeks.
  • Instant identification of bench-strength shortages across the organisation.
  • Greater visibility into successors and the ability to support their development.
  • Ability to measure the impact of retention and mobility across stores.
  • Provide greater career opportunities to team members, fulfilling the ‘One Officeworks’ approach.

Next on the agenda was to create a transparent performance process – one that was aligned to organisational goals while also making sense to each individual. The main goals were to align performance objectives with organisational goals, vision and culture while highlighting development opportunities.

Officeworks now leverages PageUp’s Performance and Learning modules to support an enhanced performance management process and help each employee understand their role in the organisation’s goals. To address the challenges of implementing a new process and the automation of this process, the team developed an inclusive change management program that provided insight into why and how the new process and technology would benefit everyone. With its comprehensive talent management program, branded as OTIS (Officeworks Talent Information System), the company has been able to demystify the talent management process. In addition, since partnering with PageUp, Officeworks has seen significant improvements in its Performance and Learning processes, including:

  • Greater transparency of the performance process, ensuring employees that they are measured the same as anyone else in their role.
  • Enabling all individuals to understand how they contribute to organisational success.
  • Better support for internal development opportunities and increasing employees’ skills and capabilities.