Inalfa’s business is built on long-term contracts, and when a new car hits the market, the company must ensure it has the workforce in place to support product guarantees of up to seven years. Attracting and keeping such a strong talent pool is a major challenge. Inalfa had to consider relocating its operations to locations where competition for engineering and design talent was less fierce or rethink its approach to talent management. It chose the latter.
“Our sites are located close to our customers’ factories. If we moved away from these locations we could have faced enormous logistical costs,” Eggelaar explains. “In terms of salaries, we cannot compete with our customers who are also trying to recruit similar candidates. We must keep people by offering them interesting careers and a good culture to work in. We strive to offer employees a role where they can make a real difference.”
These factors have acted as a catalyst for a new, more strategic approach to HR. Central to that is the shift away from spreadsheets and presentations to focus more on real-time consolidated HR data that is accessible across the entire organization enabling faster, better business decisions.
“Strategic personnel management was not deeply embedded in our HR DNA, but we have taken the first steps with the deployment of Workday Human Capital Management,” says Eggelaar. “We have the data to understand our employees, where they are now, and where they want to go in their careers. We have better visibility of the number of engineers that we will need.”
Yet Eggelaar adds, “We want more. We want to look at trends—what is happening in the department, the market, and the rest of the world. Based on this, we can get insights into how many people and what kinds of skills we will need in the future.”