How digital is helping John Holland build for the future

by HRD02 Nov 2017

John Holland has evolved from being a successful engineering and building contractor to a fully integrated infrastructure and property company.

This year alone, John Holland has secured projects with a total value of $23bn.

With such big ambitions, John Holland needed to ensure its strategy is future-facing. That’s why they’ve launched a digital transformation program that will span the business – with their People and Culture (P&C) Group being one of the first cabs off the rank.

This digitisation of People and Culture is being led by Chris Walsh, CIO of John Holland and Peter Howell, Group General Manager Organisational Development at John Holland.
‘Our focus is transforming the way we use systems and processes in the modern era – this is where we started when we turned our attention to the HR function in our business. Before we implemented SAP SuccessFactors we had a number of disparate HR systems that didn’t speak to each other,’ said Chris.

John Holland’s P&C team, has been challenged to recruit 3000 new employees by 2020. With a vision to double the size of the business in the next four years, managing people effectively will be more essential than ever to manage this phase of growth.

‘We wanted a digital HR solution to free our line managers from piles of paperwork, empowering them with access to people and organisational data. We also wanted to ensure our business is equipped to handle this new growth. With a number of large projects in the pipeline, we needed to improve staff utilisation rates and make it easier to manage employees,’ said Peter.

Digital transformation is a business-wide focus

John Holland’s digital mandate started around five years ago, and is currently being driven as part of Chris Walsh’s role as CIO. Chris oversees all digital platforms across the group.

‘Peter and I are very aligned in terms of our vision of the company and the role digital plays in that. We both knew we couldn’t reach this ambition with the systems we had. What we needed was a strategic investment in HR as a driver of our business. SAP SuccessFactors was this investment, setting us up for the future,’ said Chris.

SAP SuccessFactors is digitising HR at John Holland. Having a digital solution means we can support the dual ambitions of John Holland – growth and change – through our hiring and people processes… We’re seen as a strategic partner that drives wider company ambitions,’ said Peter.

Chris Walsh and Peter Howell will be speaking at a series of breakfast events on 16 November (Perth), 23 November (Melbourne) and 29 November (Sydney) about how HR is leading John Holland into the new frontier of digital transformation.

Click here for more information or to register.


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