HR Indaba Africa 2018: Emergence Growth is a premier HR and reward consultancy


The company will be hosting the fifth installment of its annual HR conference on 7 June.

In the coming weeks and months, CHRO SA will be chatting to all HR Indaba partners, asking them why they are excited about the event and what they believe are the most important issues facing the profession. In this article, we speak to Dr Pat Smythe, the Executive Chairman of Emergence Growth.

What is Emergence Growth?
Emergence Growth is a specialist Human Capital, Reward & Learning solutions provider. We specialise in enabling greater performance by assisting organisations to better attract, reward, engage, develop and retain highly talented people. When it comes to HR, I believe that the difference between what the market needs and what academia is producing is a total mismatch. We help people and organisations bridge this gap, creating opportunities for growth and performance enhancement.

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Tell us about the conference that you will be hosting at the HB Connect Conference Centre on 7 June.
"The conference is about thinking Beyond HR. This is the fifth year that we’re running it and it’s targeted specifically at senior HR professionals. We have discussions around topical issues and we limit attendance to a maximum of about 200 people so that we can get maximum engagement in the sessions. An exciting lineup of speakers, covering Legal, HR Standards, Outsourcing, Change Management and Reward and Recognition. Not to be missed!"

What would you say is the most pressing issue facing the HR profession at the moment?
"Digitisation. Blockchain, for example, is going to change the way we think about everything and HR is lagging behind in terms of understanding how it’s going to impact the profession. Blockchain will revolutionise the way we store and transfer value just as much as the internet has changed the information landscape. It has the potential to truly disrupt multiple industries and make processes more secure, transparent, and efficient. The problem is that, in South Africa, it seems that only the finance industry is making efforts to stay on top of developments in so far as how Blockchain will impact the market. Whether it is in relation to payroll or health and wellness, this technology has the potential to reshape HR, and it is imperative that the profession pays more attention to it."

Why did you sign up for the HR Indaba Africa?
"People strategies are our speciality and, because of the work we do in Africa, we have a deep understanding of where the continent is when it comes to HR issues like employee engagement. For instance, we have found the spirit of ‘ubuntu’ as we call it here in South Africa, is something that enhances Africa’s position when it comes to the soft people issues. African organisations are generally more compassionate, diverse and culturally aware than their American or European counterparts, so employees generally work in a more accepting and tolerant workplace. What companies in African countries haven’t yet mastered is how to maximise efficiency and to engage with their workforces in such way that it delivers the most effective results. Our presence at the HR Indaba would allow us to interact with HR practitioners and share some of our insights regarding how they add more value when they are back in their organisations."

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