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Policies create sense of belonging
Published on Friday, 18 Mar 2011
David Cheung, Human Resources Manager UPS Hong Kong

Providing our employees with sufficient opportunities to share their ideas and grow within the company is crucial to staff motivation. We have introduced `open-door' and `promote-from-within' policies to ensure our employees are heard and their need to develop is met.

Policies

The `open-door' policy encourages employees to express their ideas and thoughts to senior management. It allows every one of them to contribute to the improvement of the company - no matter their position - which creates a greater sense of belonging.

The `promote-from-within' policy is designed to help our employees develop their career. We listen to what they want and assist them in climbing the career ladder. When there is an opening, we always try to identify candidates internally, and will only explore other options when there is no suitable staff for the job. The policy provides clear guidelines and transparency for promotion. Once we have identified those with potential, we give them the opportunity of job rotation to help them gain a better understanding of the company's operation. Training is also available to equip them with necessary skills and knowledge.

Promotion

On a bi-yearly basis, employees review their performance with their supervisors and set a target that will then be approved at management level. A staff member who has reached a target will be given the opportunity to move to the next level. That way, employees are more willing to plan for their own career development. As of last year, 75 per cent of department managers were promoted from within.

Career development planning

Annually, there is a platform to discuss employee performance and their potential for development. Those with high potential will be identified and are usually divided into three categories: qualified for promotion, qualified for promotion in one to two years, and qualified for promotion in three to five years. Different arrangements are made for each member of staff based on the training and experience they need.

Cross-functional training

Employees are given opportunities to apply their strengths and build a stronger foundation for the company. Staff share ideas on how to improve teams and the company as a whole.

Buddy programme

Long-time employees are perfect mentors who can introduce our culture and operations to newcomers. The buddy system helps new recruits learn the job more efficiently and effectively, and ensures a smooth transition to their work.

Effectiveness

The `promotion-from-within' policy has played an important role in strengthening employee loyalty. UPS has about 1,200 staff members in Hong Kong.

On average, they have worked for us for more than eight years - 40 per cent of our current staff have been with us for in excess of 10 years. The high retention rate is a strong testimonial to our success through the years in engaging and motivating our staff.