Dfcu emerged second best employer of 2005 in a survey done by the Federation of Uganda Employers. Peter Kaujju spoke to Racheal Dumba, dfcuâ€™s head of human resources development finance and Catherine Olaka, the head of human resource at the bank.
QUESTION: How did dfcu Group become second best employer?
ANSWER: One of the key aspects at dfcu is the vibrancy and growth. Dfcu is a market leader in terms of placing its brands and employee relations. We took an extra step to align our human resource processes to business strategies. Human resource was put at the forefront of all business decisions. Human Resource is represented at the board, management and the lowest level of the company.
We also had a good HIV scheme, which we introduced in 2004. We enhanced it, relaunched and revamped it in 2005. Our programme provides free Anti-Retroviral drugs to all employees, one spouse and four biological children or legally-adopted ones. This gave us a lot of mileage in achieving this position.
We had a good budget for our corporate social responsibility programmes where we gave back to the community through activities like donations to internally-displaced persons. We intend to step up the campaign in 2006.
In 2004, dfcu took the Bronze Award, which was for the third best employer. What other initiatives enabled you to leap to second position?
Apart from improvement in the human resource practices, in 2005, we implemented many more strategies.
We conducted an employee satisfaction survey where participants identified weakness and strengths of the company. We also involved staff in decision-making on core issues of the company.
With the increasing employee disloyalty in the market, how have you managed to attract and retain staff?
When recruiting, we have a strategy of buying talent where we have gaps and also developing the existing staff to able to take on some other positions. We give our staff an opportunity to compete for higher positions through a competence-based approach.
Retention of staff is a result of good benefits we have like recognition of best performers, setting up a bonus scheme where staff share the profits of the company. There is also an incentive scheme for senior executives and dynamic working conditions, just like the staff. We are responsive to issues that affect staff.
How is the groupâ€™s performance?
We have a fantastic performance management system, which begins with target setting where leaders set the vision and pace, which they communicate down to the last person. We look at performance from four angles: financial, customer front, internal business processes and measuring ourselves based on a people front to identify our weaknesses and strengths. We exceeded the target in 2005.
What is the way forward for 2006?
Our human resource strategy is focussing on engagement. We will be responding to the satisfaction survey. Team work is how we are doing it because people have a sense of belonging. Performance management is key and we shall continue benchmarking in terms of reward strategy. We will make sure we satisfy customer needs and are surely going for gold in 2006.
dfcu is second best employer