Businesses need to build a workforce agile enough to keep up with the technological-led acceleration that has indelibly changed the way we work, according to Kathryn van der Merwe, ANZ’s Group Executive, Talent & Culture and Service Centres.
Speaking at the 2021 ANZ Finance & Treasury Forum, van der Merwe said businesses would benefit from creating workforces that were “flexible and adaptable and able to keep pace with the change we need them to respond to”.
At ANZ, to meet rising customer demand, the bank is currently “reassessing its core people technology”, van der Merwe said, and building a new “capability framework”.
“We're breaking that down into types of work, not roles,” she said.
van der Merwe cited the growing need for data scientists, a position ANZ has found requires similar skills to a financial analyst.
“Actually if you break those roles down [into] the types of work, there’s actually a lot of overlap,” she said.
“There’s just a smaller set of gaps that you need to address in order to create more data scientists.”
ANZ encourages its staff to develop depth in their skills, “as well as breadth” van der Merwe said, and think about a “long-term career [that navigates] across the two”.
“Thinking about work in that way helps us create a more adaptable, flexible workforce that's able to keep evolving at a faster pace.”
And the pace of change going forward will be relentless with investment in technology. A recent report published by consultancy firm McKinsey suggested COVID-19 has accelerated the digitisation of customer interactions by up to four years and the launch of digitally-enabled products by as much as seven years.
The ANZ Finance & Treasury Forum returned for its fourth year in 2021, held virtually across two days on October 20 and 21.
The forum explored key topics of global importance to your business today, with a fantastic speaker line-up across geopolitics, sustainability, technology, pandemic outcomes and leadership.
ANZ Insights will provide coverage and insights into the key themes from the forum and beyond. If you missed the live event and want to catch up, the entire program is available on demand. Please contact your ANZ relationship manager for more information.Click here to see our full coverage of the event
Durable vs perishable
ANZ is undertaking initiatives to develop “durable” as opposed to “perishable” skills in its workforce, according to van der Merwe.
“One of the enduring skills we’re looking for in people is that they have a growth mindset - a willingness to learn and adapt,” she said.
Employers have a responsibility to equip staff with the tools and skills to help them stay productive, recognising the difficulties thrown up by the pandemic, van der Merwe said.
“As employers, there's an increased onus on us to help people understand what those skills are that they need [to] keep investing in to stay relevant,” she said.
ANZ Chief Economist Richard Yetsenga said the pandemic has impacted segments of the global workforce differently.
“Women in Japan, for instance, are more likely to live alone,” he said. “[There are] quite different implications for them during lockdown than other parts of the community.”
Yetsenga hopes businesses begin using data to help address issues like the gender pay gap or minority employment ceilings, rather than a one-size-fits-all approach.
“These are not new issues”, he said, “but with populations getting older, we're recognising more and more we need to harness the power of the human capital we have as effectively as we can.”
This publication is published by Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited ABN 11 005 357 522 (“ANZBGL”) in Australia. This publication is intended as thought-leadership material. It is not published with the intention of providing any direct or indirect recommendations relating to any financial product, asset class or trading strategy. The information in this publication is not intended to influence any person to make a decision in relation to a financial product or class of financial products. It is general in nature and does not take account of the circumstances of any individual or class of individuals. Nothing in this publication constitutes a recommendation, solicitation or offer by ANZBGL or its branches or subsidiaries (collectively “ANZ”) to you to acquire a product or service, or an offer by ANZ to provide you with other products or services. All information contained in this publication is based on information available at the time of publication. While this publication has been prepared in good faith, no representation, warranty, assurance or undertaking is or will be made, and no responsibility or liability is or will be accepted by ANZ in relation to the accuracy or completeness of this publication or the use of information contained in this publication. ANZ does not provide any financial, investment, legal or taxation advice in connection with this publication.