The success of a company depends partly on the skills, experience and positive energy of the people who work there. The Human Resources department plays a key role in this. This department is responsible for managing the employee life cycle and administering employee benefits. Mr. Dolf Ketelaar has been Moba's HR Director for the past four years and he explains the change in HR philosophy that has altered Moba's corporate culture.
Mr. Ketelaar sees his department as a supportive one in the Moba organization: "I see HR as being not only about formulating policy but much more about knowing what managers and employees need and then investigating those possibilities within legal regulations. The managers at the company are the ones who are then responsible for implementing the HR policy. They have to talk to and work with their employees and we, as an HR department, provide guidelines, advice and the right systems."
Moba employees are involved with the company and commit to Moba for many years. We have employees who have worked here for forty or even fifty years. And when I started at the company, I wanted to build on this feeling of pride that Moba employees are known for while also implementing a different kind of philosophy.
Change in philosophy
"When I started at Moba four years ago, the first thing I noticed was how proud its employees were of the company," Mr. Ketelaar reflects on his first impression of Moba. "Moba employees are involved with the company and commit to Moba for many years. We have employees who have worked here for forty or even fifty years. And when I started at the company, I wanted to build on this feeling of pride that Moba employees are known for while also implementing a different kind of philosophy. I believe in trust over control. Ownership and leadership should be implemented as low as possible within the organization. If I hire someone and tell step by step what he or she has to do, and the employee does what he or she is asked, you are not making optimal use of the employee's expertise. If you want your employees to excel, you have to trust them, give them responsibilities and space to develop."
This change of philosophy has marked a change in Moba's corporate culture. "This has been the biggest challenge for my department in the past few years because change always comes with skepticism. To get managers and employees on board with this new philosophy, they needed to understand the benefits it brings. The most important thing is to keep the conversation going with employees. How employees perform at work has a lot to do with how they feel. And you can only find this out if you as a manager enter into a dialog with that employee. Things then emerge from that conversation, and it is up to us to find out what the possibilities are."
Step by step this new philosophy has been implemented at Moba. "For example, we introduced the Performance Development Dialog (PDD). The PDD is an annual conversation between the manager and employee to identify, evaluate and develop the employee's performance within the organization so that they can achieve their goals and objectives more effectively. And we also altered the job descriptions within the organization. A job description should not include the tasks that come with the job, but what you have to achieve as an employee."
A good employer must be a good competitor in terms of working conditions, creating a good working environment and atmosphere. People should feel welcome and be given space to develop.
The HR department is responsible for an employee's entire life cycle from hiring to retiring. When looking for new employees, Mr. Ketelaar believes that personality is more important than past work experience. "Of course you need certain qualities and experience for a job, but I believe that how someone communicates, works with others and takes initiative are more important. At Moba, we look for the potential in employees and not just at what they have done in the past. And they also need to fit with Moba. So yes, I see personality as trumping a piece of paper."
To compete in the job market, Moba needs to offer the right conditions. "A good employer must be a good competitor in terms of working conditions, creating a good working environment and atmosphere. People should feel welcome and be given space to develop. There are two ways potential employees can enter a company. Firstly the website, which we have updated and modernized in recent years, and secondly the physical entrance to our head office, which will be given a modern facelift as part of the renovation. The entrance to a company shapes people's first impression, so it is important for potential new employees to get the right feeling for the company. Hiring employees is a two-way street. They need to convince us of their qualities and ambitions, but we also need to show what Moba stands for so that they want to commit to our company."
It is up to my department to make sure that the right people work at Moba and that our employees can thrive so that our customers get the best equipment and service. Within the Management Team, I represent the voice of the Moba employee.
Times are changing, and the same can be said about the needs of employees. For the HR department, keeping a close eye on the needs of all employees is paramount. "Millennials want different things than someone who is almost retiring. It is up to us to create the right conditions for everyone. A more recent example of this is flexible working hours. Nowadays, employees want to be in charge of their own schedules and, as long as they finish their work, this is now possible at Moba."
Mr. Ketelaar and his six employees keep the HR department running. It is one of the smallest departments at Moba, but one with a very important job. "It is up to my department to make sure that the right people work at Moba and that our employees can thrive so that our customers get the best equipment and service. Within the Management Team, I represent the voice of the Moba employee. And ultimately, Moba employees are the beating heart of the company. They keep the company running and are the success beyond the Moba brand."