Key Takeaways Top Employers Inspire 2023

9 minutes read
By Sinakho Dhlamini, HR Content Specialist, Top Employers Institute
Sinakho Dhlamini
Content Marketing Specialist

Top Employers Institute hosted leading experts in people from across the world in a global online event devoted to featuring several engaging sessions around pertinent issues in HR from the most inspiring minds in the industry between 23rd to 25th May 2023.

We were able to share knowledge from our people practices experts and certified Top Employers from brandings, including:

  • SAP India
  • Transunion
  • NTT Data
  • Amgen
  • Groupama
  • Coca-Cola Europacific Partners
  • Nestle China
  • UST
  • Dana Incorporated
  • JYSK

To access the full videos of all the sessions discussed, fill in the form on the right, to access them.

The week showcased the best in people practices and featured several in-depth discussions on leading organisations' best HR strategies and policies. Here are some highlights of each event that took place and key quotes from each session:

Day One

The Keys to a Human-Centric Organisation with Paola Bottaro from Top Employers Institute

In our opening session, we got an insider's view on how Top Employers Institute is becoming a human-centric organisation. Paola Bottaro, People Director at Top Employers Institute, talked to Wouter van Ewijk about how the business has adapted to support its employees better while learning to be mindful, empathetic, and purposeful. During their conversation, Paola shared her expert knowledge of how this culture can provide opportunities for growth and development for both the company and the workforce. Throughout the conversation, she offered watchers an in-depth discussion of the complexities and obstacles in creating a new way of working.


‘You have to, by design, make sure [that] people are connected, and collaborating with a sense of belonging. It doesn't just happen by itself. It’s not by chance.’ Paola Bottaro, People Director at Top Employers Institute.

Designing People Experiences in the Changing World of Work with SAP India

Rashmi Raghuraja, Senior HR Consultant at SAP India, spoke to Billy Elliot, APAC Regional Director at Top Employers Institute, about how SAP has created various programmes to support their people better as their needs have changed in recent years in many ways, mirroring how the global landscape of work has changed. 

With a focus on culture, they started from the beginning. They worked with employees across SAP to reconstruct and improve their practices and people policies. One of the most essential things they realised is that they could never design a programme from the top down. It needed to be a partnership with everyone involved. In essence, the soul of their people practice strategy focused on every employee's needs. 

‘What we realised is that we can’t design a programme without involving our employees. All of our programmes are designed in partnership with our employees.’ Rashmi Raghuraja, Senior HR Consultant at SAP India.

TransUnion GCC Africa’s Approach to a Hybrid/Remote Personalised Employee Experience

In the years since the covid-19 pandemic, the move to remote and hybrid work has been handled differently by organisations across the world as they implement their new way of working. On their mission of information for good, TransUnion GCC Africa has prioritised trust and accountability for every employee in their company. In this discussion with Shivani Ramsaroop, HR Manager at TransUnion Africa, and Sandra Botha, HR Auditor at Top Employers Institute, we learnt more about how they constantly review their training to ensure their employees feel supported throughout their careers.

‘Listening and learning are at the forefront of our talent attraction model.’ Shivani Ramsaroop, HR Manager at TransUnion.

Fostering a Strong Culture in a Global Organisation with NTT Data

In our last session on day one, we held a compelling with Kim Curley, VP of People & Organisation at NTT DATA and Trevor Bogan, Regional Director-Americas at Top Employers Institute, on the importance of creating and maintaining a strong culture across a global organisation. The conversation acknowledged that while many people believe that there is one distinct culture in an organisation, that is often untrue as they usually have many cultures within them, and it’s not to eliminate these cultures but rather to create a sense of culture that involves everyone. As Kim and Trevor continued their conversation, they focused on how organisations could better engage high performers through a considered and lived company culture.

‘Culture cannot be dictated from the top down. And it cannot be long-term achieved or sustained from the bottom up. So, it takes both paying attention and pressure, in the best possible way, coming from both sides to get it [culture] long term.’ Kim Curley, VP of People and Organisation at NTT DATA.


Day Two

Amgen FlexSpace: How Flexibility Can Reinforce the Organisational Culture

The second day of Top Employers Inspire began with an exciting session about how Amgen had to completely rethink and redesign their office and approach to flexible work – first in response to the covid-19 pandemic – and later to the needs of their employees. In this session, Sandra Vincente, HR Director Spain & Portugal at Amgen, and Irene Martinez, Global HR Auditor, spoke about how they needed to create spaces in the office for work and intentional socialisation and how they have been challenged to keep up their culture despite not every employee is in the office regularly. Throughout the conversation, they touched on the real challenges they experienced while sharing their best practices for making flexible work possible.

‘Work culture is not something you only have in a brochure or a poster – it’s something you need to experience and live.’ Sandra Vicente, HR Director Spain & Portugal at Amgen.

Giving Purpose and Vision Through a Shared Company Project with Groupama Loire Bretagne

Purpose, while always important for organisations and their people, is having a more significant impact than ever before. In our second session on day two, we were lucky to host a session in French with Groupama Loire Bretagne’s Directeur des Ressources Humaines et des Relations Sociales, Olivier Dumarty, and one of Top Employer’s Institute’s HR Auditors, Malvina de Corbier, around the importance of values by exploring their new initiative ‘Exploring the Possibilities’. Groupama Loire Bretagne’s initiative aimed to increase employee commitment and find new ways to involve their employees in the company’s strategy. 

‘Our strategic plan reflects the company’s reality and the expectations of our clients and employees. Employees must recognise themselves in the company’s strategic plan to provide the best service to their customers.’* Olivier Dumarty, Groupama Loire Bretagne’s Directeur des Ressources Humaines et des Relations Sociales.

*This quote was translated into English from the original French.

Delivering a Personalised Digital Employee Experience with Coca-Cola Europacific Partners

Personalisation is becoming a crucial part of many organisations’ digital HR strategy as they adapt their approach to employee experience by taking in the individual needs of their employees. As they no longer see them as a monolith but rather see them as unique people. In our session with Suzy Jearum, Associate Director of Employee Experience at Coca-Cola Europacific Partner, and Chloe Lawrence, HR Auditor, they looked at how Coca-Cola Europacific Partners have implemented a continuous improvement mindset to their approach to employee experiences. While discussing this concept, they looked at how employees from all levels of experience have been able to personalise how they work. 

‘To meet the needs of our employees, we must have a continuous improvement mindset, so we’re constantly making improvements, big and small.’ Suzy Jearum, Associate Director of Employee Experience Coca-Cola Europacific Partners.

Neuroplasticity to Upskill Your Workforce with Top Employers Institute

In our last session of day two, Dr Yvette Wilms, HR Auditor at Top Employers Institute, explored the power of neuroplasticity for the individual and the workplace. In the rapidly evolving world of work, organisations face the ongoing challenge of keeping their workforce equipped with the necessary skills to stay ahead of the curve. In her session in conversation with Wouter van Ewijk, she looked at the brain's remarkable ability to reorganise and adapt itself and how that holds immense potential to upskill your workforce through targeted training programs. Furthermore, engaging learning experiences, regular skill-building exercises, and neuroplasticity empower individuals to develop new competencies, embrace change, and embrace new technologies readily.

‘Neuroplasticity tells us that we can change the brain to be stronger and work more optimally, and we do that by strengthening our cognitive skills to focus longer.’ Dr Yvette Wilms, HR Auditor at Top Employers Institute.


Day Three

Nestlé China’s Mentor Networks

To kick off our final day of Top Employers Inspire 2023, we went to China to meet with Nestlé China’s Senior Vice President of Corporate Human Resources Zone Greater China, Jessie Liu, as she was in discussion with Top Employers Institute’s Regional Director APAC, Billy Elliot, Nestlé’s mentor networks. With an introduction to the programme, the two could discuss the challenges faced and the successes won through its implementation.

‘Mentoring programmes allow for a leaner structure with a better gender balance that enables the retention of top talent.’ Jessie Liu, Senior Vice President of Corporate Human Resources Zone Greater China.

Driving DEI with Social Impact: UST’s Partnership with ‘Tech She Can’

Women still need to be more represented in positions across the tech industry, stopping them from having equal representation in shaping our technological future. In our session with Seena Mohan, Senior Business Partner at UST, we met with Karen Muller, Client Success Advisor at Top Employers Institute, to discuss UST’s diversity and inclusion strategy and partnership with Tech She Can. They discussed the importance of female representation, social impact programmes, and collaboration between non-profits and corporate companies. 

‘It is important to inspire women and girls to get into tech careers so they can become equals in creating and developing new technology businesses to shape our future.’ Seena Mohan, Senior Business Partner at UST.

Global Strategy and Local Needs: Exploring the Fit between Global Organisations and Local Ones with Dana Incorporated and JYSK

In our penultimate session of Top Employers Inspire, we were happy to host two Top Employers as they had a compelling conversation about leveraging business strategies to enhance employee experiences and people practices in local, regional, and global organisations. Ágnes Nyeste, HR Manager at JYSK Hungary, and Zsolt Tánczos, Compensation and Benefits Europe at Dana Incorporated, shared their learnings from across their career as they engaged with issues critical to global organisations. In addition, in their discussion with Nuria Torrent, Account Manager, and Davide Banterla, Senior HR Account Manager, they were able to touch on real-life examples as they touched on the complexities of implementing people practices in global companies.

‘Communication is the most important part of implementing a new digital system. You must constantly ensure that everyone understands why it is being used and what advantage it brings.’ Ágnes Nyeste, HR Manager at JYSK Hungary.

‘It’s crucial to focus on the needs of different groups (in the organisation) and stay open to altering policies and giving flexibility where needed.’ Zsolt Tánczos, Compensation and Benefits Europe at Dana Incorporated.

The Fundamental Shift in HR: Navigating Agile Practices and Skills-Based Organisations with Top Employers Institute

We closed out Top Employers Inspire 2023 with a conversation between Quinten van Es, Director of Research & Insights at Top Employers Institute, and David Plink, CEO at Top Employers Institute, about the latest trends in people practices with a focus on how agile strategies are changing the HR world. As HR professionals strive to keep up with rapid changes, Quinten shared expert insights on how organisations effectively integrate agile practices and skills-based approaches into their HR strategies with real-life examples.

‘When you’re starting to work agile, you shouldn’t be afraid to fail. Be prepared to step up and do better to get the best results.’ Quinten van Es, Director of Research & Insights at Top Employers Institute.


We have HR-focused events throughout the year, so don't miss out on another chance to peek at the latest workplace trends by checking out our upcoming events:






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Key Takeaways Top Employers Inspire 2023