Designed to give members of the CIPD community an opportunity to learn, be inspired and network, the event brought together over 80 attendees. The agenda tackled topics such as wellbeing, inclusion, digitalisation and coaching.

1. Welcome updates from the CIPD

CIPD Middle East General Manager, Ramy Bayyour, opened the event and shared a few updates from the Middle East chapter. Among other noteworthy developments, the CIPD is very excited to announce the launch of its inaugural CIPD Middle East People Conference & Awards, taking place at the Grosvenor House in Dubai on April 10-11, 2019. 

“Reinforcing our commitment to championing better work and working lives in the region, the event will provide a platform for HR, L&D and people professionals in the region to share best practices, connect and learn from our latest insights”, explains Ramy Bayyour. For more information or to register your interest, please click here

Download the CIPD Middle East presentation slides here

2. Wellbeing & inclusion: A keynote by Yetunde Hofmann

CIPD Board Member Yetunde Hofmann delivered an inspiring keynote on creating a culture of engagement, wellbeing and inclusion. She outlined three important steps to creating a culture of wellbeing and inclusion: 

  • Organisations must introduce a culture of listening and HR need to be able to have courageous conversations. 
  • Organisations must allow employees to bring their whole selves to work, and encourage them to find their individual purpose. “Organisations must have a purpose, but individuals need to have a purpose beyond the job – otherwise, their job becomes their life and they can’t let go. To lead, you need to be able to let go”, she highlighted.
  • Play to individuals’ strengths. 

3. The State of the People Profession by Wilson Wong

Wilson Wong, Head of Insight and Futures at CIPD, revealed key findings from CIPD Middle East’s latest research on the State of the People Profession. Among others, the survey found that:

  • 44% of HR in the region feel that they have the capacity to take on more work, which many attributed to the lack of understanding of the HR profession by senior management.
  • In the MENA region, 25% of HR professionals cite organisational politics as the greatest barrier to advancing their career.
  • An overwhelming majority of HR professionals feel there’s a mismatch between their professional values and their organisation’s values when it comes to how they view employees. 
You can view the infographic here or download the presentation slides here.

4. Workforce implications of digitalisation by Jim Matthewman 

Jim Matthewman, Lead Consultant on OD, Workforce Analytics and Planning at CIPD, explored the workforce implications of digitalisation (including blockchain and AI). 

In order to prepare for the future of work, one needs to understand the context in which we are evolving. Today, four generations work together in the workplace – most of which have not been formally prepared for the digital age. Organisations need to think of how they will upskill, reskill or “newskill” their employees.

Understanding the context will enable HR to predict how they will respond to change. Jim Matthewman insisted on the importance of shifting our approach to change “from push to pull”. “So long as change is perceived as something that is done to us, change will inevitably face resistance”, he explains. 

To find out more, you can find CIPD’s factsheets and reports on HR analytics here or download our training calendar here.

5. Flexible work for women by Mums@Work

Louise Karim, Managing Director of Mums@Work, discussed how flexible working options can improve organisations’ productivity and inclusion. She highlighted four strategies to achieve a productive and diverse working environment:

  1. Offer flexible working, critical to address gender parity and meet demands of the future generation of leaders.
  2. Remove cultural blocks by providing diversity training to make employees more aware of what constitutes a diverse workplace.
  3. Practice mentorship, coaching and career path planning to encourage retention and enable women to move up the ladder. 
  4. Provide programs to support career breakers, such as returnship programs. 
Download the presentation slides here.

Further supporting the idea of flexible working, Mandeep Kalsi from PwC said, “Engaging in a dialogue with employees is essential to implement flexible work.”

For more insights on Diversity & Inclusion, access the 2018 report available here

6. Update on key change to the immigration landscape by PwC 

PwC delivered an insightful presentation on atypical working arrangements and changes to the UAE visa landscape in 2018. 

Download the presentation slides here.

Media Centre

If you’re a journalist or member of the press looking for more information or to speak to one of our experts, please contact our press team. 

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Championing better work and working lives

About the CIPD

At the CIPD, we champion better work and working lives. We help organisations to thrive by focusing on their people, supporting economies and society for the future. We lead debate as the voice for everyone wanting a better world of work.