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HR Profession of the Future

A summary from the CIPD HR Leaders Event

By Dennis O'Donnell

Dennis is Oakwood's Chief Executive Officer and works in our UK Office
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Oakwood recently sponsored the second CIPD HR Leaders event in Dubai. The event was hosted by the CIPD’s CEO, Peter Cheese and the CIPD Middle East’s MD, Matthew Mee. The event was attended by senior stakeholders in the region including Directors from Oakwood Dubai, and Senior HR Managers and Directors from companies including; Al Futtaim, Dubai Parks, GE, Al Naboodah, Gulf Capital, Hilton, Ministry of Justice, Saudi Aramco, The Executive Council Dubai, and Emrill.

Matthew Mee announced the launch of Oakwood’s CIPD Level 7 Advanced Diploma to the group, the first in the region to offer this prestigious diploma. 

Peter Cheese discussed the changing nature of HR (#changingHR) caused by the vast shifts in technology, digital platforms, new age learning and government legislations - such as the Happiness Agenda in UAE. Then we discussed the effects of BREXIT and US politics, which seem to have put the brakes on globalization!

What does this mean for HR?

HR needs to think strategically about the kind of workforce we need in the future. Is it time to move away from policing in the form of policies and procedures and replacing them with principles? Do we still need employees to clock in, fingerprint time logs and use a forced ranking system of appraisal?

The reality of modern work is its more intense, less secure and affecting our wellbeing. It’s overdue – we need to choose the carrot over the stick! We require principles, not more policy, especially for millennials.

As per CIPD, the principles are:

Performance management needs to be outcome driven, evidence based and principles led. To improve our productivity we need greater HR capability. This can be achieved by building competency based skills, setting principles of looking after people and increasing the HR professions influence in the business.

This sounds great in theory, but challenges faced while attempting to implement this in the GCC, should not be underestimated. We have a diverse expat population who are all dependent on a visa to stay in the country.  Would policy be your go to, or would you challenge the norm?


For information on our CIPD qualifications please get in touch with us at: info@oakwooddubai.ae or call us today on +971 4 359 9020