Strong culture key to successful transformation

The key takeaway from HR Tech Summit was more about change management than anything else

Strong culture key to successful transformation

Want to digitally transform your organisation? Getting your culture right should be a top HR priority, said a business transformation expert.

Opening this year’s sold out HR Tech Summit at Hilton Singapore, Karunesh Prasad, founder and CEO at Change Et Al emphasised that culture should be an organisation’s main operating system through disruptive times – not the latest HR tech product.

“If you get culture right, everything else will work,” Prasad said.

His reminder is timely. Recently, a Telstra study found that Singapore organisations are failing to digitally transform due to a lack of focus on people and processes, and an over-emphasis on technology.

“Buying an expensive piano doesn’t make you a great musician,” he said. “Think about HR technology and how people are making huge investments – absolutely excessive investments – thinking that it will take care of the problems [the organisation] have.”

He insists that before getting the latest HR tech product on the market, relook and strengthen the company culture.

Besides, tech solutions are not a miracle remedy. Prasad believes you need to first review your current processes, such as the company’s performance management or even its feedback system.

“If it doesn’t work without a technical solution, you’ll probably still have difficulty after that,” he said. “If [the system] is not working today, just because you have an app, it will not change the situation. Think about the culture piece first.”

The HR tech landscape is also “really crowded”, which is why it’s always important to answer the following questions before choosing a new product:

- What works for me?
- What can address the organisation’s and my concerns?

Into its second year, the HR Tech Summit welcomed a bigger crowd than 2018 at 400 attendees. It also had a greater focus on hot topics such as people analytics – how to collect, analyse and turn it into actionable insights, as well as how HR can better lead the charge in a cultural change.

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