HR in the Hot Seat: Jarrod Patterson, human resource director of South Asia, Henkel

Henkel’s HRD talks about the importance of having an agile HR team and an international perspective

HR in the Hot Seat: Jarrod Patterson, human resource director of South Asia, Henkel

How did you get into this role?  
My professional journey was less typical than most, considering my first job was a pastry chef. However, once I started in human resources some 15 years ago, I haven’t looked back. Working in HR for Henkel in particular has given me many great opportunities and enabled me to work in three different countries – Australia, Malaysia and Singapore – while covering the broader region of Asia-Pacific. This has been a very enriching experience, both professionally and privately.  

What motivates or excites you the most about your position? 
My current role offers a great deal of variety both in HR tasks and geography. This, combined with a focused and supportive leadership team, makes working for Henkel very exciting.  

Additionally, within Singapore and the broader southeast Asia region, Henkel is growing and investing in its people and business. This makes my role extremely motivating.   

What’s unique about HR at Henkel? 
Henkel is an international company with a highly diversified global team that is always looking for improvement and opportunities. Our HR members need to be agile in their thinking, have an international perspective, and possess a strong, business-orientated focus. This blend, along with our strong corporate values, makes HR in Henkel unique and satisfying. 

What is HR’s biggest challenge for the coming year? 
Securing the right talent is always one of HR’s biggest challenges, and this year will be no different. However, it is also clear that we must be more and more prepared to deal with a greater level of volatility and the rapid growth in digitisation. Both trends present challenges and opportunities, and it is critical we align on how we attract talent, how we move them around the world and, importantly, how we retain them.        

If there’s one piece of HR-related advice you could give, what would it be? 
Be curious and never stop learning, in particular from your peers and external experts.       

Where’s the best place to go for dinner/drinks in Singapore?
Having only relocated to Singapore recently, I will hold out on providing a specific venue. However, for value, variety and efficiency, you cannot go past the hawker centres spread across Singapore. I love the array of different cuisines and vibrant environments they provide. 

Related stories:

HR in the Hot Seat: Ravi Bhogaraju, global head HR and talent, Archroma

How one woman used diversity and risk to her advantage 

Going her own way: Melissa Wong’s HR odyssey

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