Diversity

HR-ONs praktikanter og studentermedhjælpere efteråret 2019

HR-ON Signs Professional Agreement with Technology Denmark

HR-ON Signs Professional Agreement with Technology Denmark 1280 866 HR-ON

The professional agreement, signed by HR-ON in conjunction with Technology Denmark, has for a year now increased the company’s focus on IT-specialists. This is especially noticeable in the IT-company’s staff as HR-ON now hires more students.

HR-ON is making great efforts to contribute to improving the conditions and professional opportunities for future IT-specialists. This is the main goal of the professional agreement that HR-ON signed with Technology Denmark last year. An agreement which HR-ON continues to support, confirms Ali E. Cevik, CEO of HR-ON.

Ali E. Cevik underskiver virksomhedspagten i 2018.

Ali E. Cevik, CEO of HR-ON, signed the company pact last year with Mayor, Peter Rahbæk Juel, acting as a formal witness.

Why the need for a formal agreement?

“You may be asking why we need a formal “professional agreement”, why we couldn’t just give the students and others the opportunity of an internship or a job without a specific agreement. But I think Mayor Peter Rahbæk Juel made a very good point in his speech introducing the contract, a year ago,” Ali E. Cevik says. 

Ali E. Cevik is referring to the mayor of Odense’s pertinent and humorous speech, in which he made his point by encouraging us to think back to one of Denmark’s most-remembered kings; Canute the Holy (or in Danish ‘Knud den Hellige’). He argues that if this king had signed an agreement with the Jutes back in 1085, he could have conquered England with their help, instead of being murdered by them.

The morale here is that tech and robot companies on the Danish island of Funen must take a common responsibility and sign an agreement, where they each contribute to the development of the future’s talent pool, especially by creating new jobs.

“And that is actually what we have done, which we are very happy about,” Ali E. Cevik says.

Breath of Fresh Air

The main goal outlined in this professional agreement is for the participating companies to create more internships and student jobs. Also to hire more international employees.

Currently, there are 17 interns and student workers at HR-ON. The students are an important asset for HR-ON, Ali E. Cevik says.

“We have gotten a lot of good energy, new knowledge and new angles on the solutions to a variety of tasks. Our interns and student workers have evolved, gained practical insight and work experience, which makes them better equipped for a future career, most often – but not exclusively – with us,” Ali E. Cevik says. 

You can read more about the professional agreement on Technology Denmark’s website here and here.

HR-ONs direktør Ali E. Cevik som barn

From Shepherd to Gazelle Hunter – An Unusual Journey to Success

From Shepherd to Gazelle Hunter – An Unusual Journey to Success 1200 731 HR-ON

One entrepreneur in Odense has had a longer journey to success than most

Today Ali E. Cevik, founder of the Danish IT company HR-ON, will be presented with a coveted business award in Odense. The story behind this successful entrepreneur is rather unusual and very interesting. 

When Ali E. Cevik first arrived in the Pjentedamsgade area of Odense, he was a shepherd. Today, 42 years later, he is an academic and the founder of a growing, Danish software company, currently with 37 employees.

And it is in his position as founder of the company HR-ON, that he is to be awarded the ‘Børsen Gazelle’ award for the second time in the Odeon cultural center in Odense.

“My story shows how far people can go, if they are not held back by barriers”, says Ali E. Cevik.

The house on Pjentedamsgade

The area around Pjentedamsgade in Odense was far from fashionable in 1974, when the car with Ali E. Cevik’s father behind the wheel pulled up in front of number 28. Here, on the second floor was Ali’s childhood home.

“This is not where the rich lived. It was a real working quarter. I remember life back then with adults sitting and drinking all day in front of the grocery store, and ladies standing on street corners”, says Ali E. Cevik.

However for Ali and his friends, life consisted of riding their bikes around town, mainly through the Pjentedamsgade area where his home was, and where today the city’s Odeon cultural centre is located.

Ali E. Cevik came to Denmark with his little brother. Coming from a rural, agricultural community, the pair quickly located the best fruit trees in the neighborhood, searching for apples to make apple pie. It also didn’t take them long to find and explore the neighbourhood’s backroads and shortcuts, and although they initially had no idea who Hans Christian Andersen was, they found their way into the author’s house, where they were shown a real gold mine for a couple of young growing boys. A cocoa machine.

Ali Cevik som barn

1976:  Ali E. Cevik photographed at Adamsgade, where the Odeon cultural centre is now located.

HR-ONs direktør Ali Cevik med gazellepris nummer 2

2019: Nearly 40 years later, Ali E. Cevik will receive a Gazelle Award on the same street where he played as a child. Behind Ali E. Cevik is the Odeon cultural centre, where the awards ceremony takes place today on 20th November.

A radio was the height of technology

At this time, Denmark was taking major steps forward in the tech revolution.

In contrast, in the village of Gopson on the Anatolian plateau, where Ali E. Cevik and his family originally lived, there were not many modern conveniences. In fact, there were none.

“My grandfather had a radio on which he could hear some news, and that was the highest technology we had”, says Ali E. Cevik.

The family’s house was built of clay and consisted of one room in which the whole family lived.

The children of the community had the task of looking after the animals. This was primarily sheep and some goats, but his family also had a buffalo with youngsters, which Ali was particularly attached to.

An unconventional entry into the labor market

Working as a shepherd was Ali’s first experience of teamwork.

“Within the group of children there was a kind of hierarchy, and being one of the youngest I was among those at the bottom. The big ones were maybe only ten years old, but they were big compared to me. So it was us little ones who were sent out to find the animals if they had wandered off”, says Ali E. Cevik.

These children did not have any toys, and before little Ali was brought to Denmark he had never seen a car up close. The children instead played with whatever they could find around them. They would fill their shoes with sand and pretend to drive around like cars and they would play with sticks.

Ali Cevik som barn

Here Ali E. Cevik is seen surrounded by family and people from the village in a sacred place, Demirci Baba, used as a meeting place for celebrations. Here the village would dine together, play music and dance folk dances. On the tree behind them, they would tie fabric to the branches and make a wish.

Ali Cevik som barn

Ali E. Cevik and his brother in the small village in Turkey where the two brothers grew up.

The bus ran once a week 

There was no electricity and virtually no road network. A bus came to town once a week. The bus was a big event and the little boys would watch the buses coming to town.

It was therefore also a big event when Ali E. Cevik and his brother were picked up by their father to leave the village. Their father had traveled in advance to work as an unskilled worker at an iron foundry. Then their mother followed, and after that their father went back to fetch the brothers from their grandmother. In a car!

“I went from never having seen a car up close to driving all the way from the Anatolian plateau to Denmark”, says Ali E. Cevik.

Thrown in the deep end

On his second day living in Denmark, Ali was already sent to school, without being able to speak a word of Danish. However, today he appreciates being thrown in the deep end.

“I came from a village school where we were learnt the alphabet and the history of the Ottoman Empire, and not much more than that. In Denmark, however, I had to adjust quickly to a more professional style of education”, says Ali E. Cevik.

From primary school to high school, and on to university. Ali E. Cevik graduated with the ‘cand.phil.’ title, specialised in Russian and Social Economy studies. And with that, one part of his journey to success was complete – the journey from shepherd on the Anatolian plateau to academic in Denmark. He could then begin the second stage – the journey that culminates in part with the award ceremony held today in the same place that he, as a child, cycled in search of apples.

“My dad broke the social legacy and moved out of our village. If my parents had not moved at that time, I might still be living in that village. I would probably have a television, because they now have those in the village, but it would be very far from the life I live today”, Ali E. Cevik ends.

Et citat der siger: "Harnes the power of social recruitment"

Harnessing the power of social recruiting

Harnessing the power of social recruiting 1200 628 HR-ON

Social recruiting is extremely powerful for the current and future state of your company! Want to get a clear understanding on how to use social recruiting in your recruitment process in order to reach the best candidates, may they be active or passive?

Then this article is for you!

Online content gets consumed in increasing numbers each year. Actually, multiple social media platforms at once. With that in mind, one of the questions in HR-ON’s “Meet the team” section is, What are the top 5 most-used apps on your phone?”. You will be able to see in the future posts that most of the people answering will choose them to be mostly social media apps.

Thinking about it, you can likely name 5 social media platforms without difficulty. The permanent usage of social channels has changed the way we interact with each other and has had a profound impact on the way we approach the job search process.

Job searching and recruiting continue to evolve alongside of numerous trends in the HR departments. Technological advancements, results from previous campaigns, competitor’s campaigns and predictions for the future are only few examples of influential factor in HR development. These are the factors that will mold the recruiting systems in the future years.

Progression changes direction and new innovative solutions might replace all the recruitment efforts we are working on today. Now, I am not saying it’s not important to be up to date, relevant and appeal to the different generations, but remember, to take a breath and find your own online voice and be genuine in doing so.

Looking back in time we see examples of influencers that were dead wrong about future trends. In 2007, when Apple was just in the beginning of developing a phone that acted as a computer as well, Steve Ballmer (CEO of Microsoft at the time) said ”There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance.

Going mobile

The time for websites that are not responsive is ending. Small and medium sized companies are getting on board and reaping the value of user centered designs, a trend which seems to increase every year.

Not to mention, a report made at Cisco that predicts that mobile data traffic will increase sevenfold between 2017 and 2022. Besides that, if looking at the accelerated evolution within the past years, the development doesn’t seem to stop at 2022.

According to Statista there will be nearly 2.9 billion users of mobile devices by 2020 so not having a responsive website will end up costing customers in the long run.

 

Interact with users and participate actively in conversations

People like to form a connection and get in contact with companies through dialogue. LinkedIn, Facebook, blogs and all other social channels serve as a way to peek into the lives of possible collaborators and future candidates for your job openings. Participating actively in meaningful and related conversations gives you access and can awake interest in passive candidates.

Passive candidates

Now that we are talking about these specific candidates, what exactly is a passive candidate?

A passive candidate is a person who is not currently looking for a job, but has the potential of being the perfect fit for your company. They represent a big percentage of the workforce, in fact 92% of candidates would consider switching jobs if a company with an excellent reputation offered them a position. That alone should be a incentive to be proactive and start building a good brand reputation!

The passive candidates already have the stability of a job, though, so you will need  will need to charm and make them want to join you.

You can do that with your social media marketing strategy and a focus on employer branding.

This is a significant and effective gateway in the pursuit of the passive candidates. A lot of magic comes with this buzzword and there is more to come. The influencer market has become quite saturated, and social media channels are battling fake accounts and people faking their real influence, so employer branding is becoming an increasingly relevant method of establishing a credible and trustworthy brand.

 

Online reputation

Ideally, your online reputation is flawless, you reach your audience with little effort, prospective clients and candidates can easily find and interact with your company and your best content. Now, the reality is that there is a long way to reach all of that and it is a work in progress.

Quality content that is tailored for your desired audience is a great way to start. Know your audience and optimise their online experience so that there aren’t any inconsistencies and confusing call to action in your digital footprint.

A 2017 study made by DemandGenReport shows that 75% of people said that the online content had a significant impact on their buying decision, so gaining their trust through quality content pays off in the long run.

Make a social media strategy that adjusts to your audiences behaviour so that you talk their language, without losing your brand identity.

Your presence on each social platform can differ, as long as your core values and identity is still represented.

It comes without saying that all the technical aspects need to work as in working landing pages, no errors and responsive design.

 

Use your employers networks

The chance is that you and your employees are connected through social networks to many potential customers and potential candidates. Tap into that potential and connect with the  audience in a more organic way.

This can be included in your employer branding strategy, because your employers are your best asset and their networks may as well be a gold mine.

In order to have employers that are ambassadors of your brand, they need to be happy, satisfied and feel like they matter in your organization for their efforts to be genuine.

Empower them to be active socially, digitally and even encourage them to write about working with you on their blogs and give reviews of your company.

According to a 2018 study done by BrightLocal, 84% of people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, so covering both of those fronts gives you best exposure.

Make sure your employers know that you are open to them sharing and helping to fill in job positions and some even make it as an ERP -employer referral program- where there can come bonuses for referring to an excellent candidate that ends up being employed.

Show off your employees and your company culture, including that in your social media marketing strategy and on your website. Make visible the fact that you are proud of your employers and your work environment.

In this previous article we talk about the usage of video in recruiting qualified candidates and is a great opportunity in your employer branding and social recruiting.

Be mindful about utilising the power of social media, your own and your employers networks in order to get the best results in the recruitment process.

There is so much access to broad networks and information, so it is your and your company’s responsibility to use it to its fullest in your recruitment.

Værdien af diversitet

The business value of diversity and integration

The business value of diversity and integration 1200 628 HR-ON

What is all the hype around diversity and inclusion? Is there an increase in focus on fewer opportunities for some, or equal opportunities for everyone?

What exactly is the meaning of diversity in the workplace?

Does it pay off from a business perspective to focus on diversity and integration?

These are some questions that might be on your mind when talking about diversity. Let’s break it down into smaller pieces.

 

Diversity

The employees have their own set of skills which are attained through studies and experience, as well as through their personal and professional background, all of which will affect their work perspective in certain ways.

On a personal level we are talking amongst others about ethnicity, country of origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, religious beliefs or disabilities. The second level is the professional diversity that includes amongst others academic background, career path, industry background, personality type and thinking style.

All of these traits and experiences are accumulated over time and give candidates unique perspectives and skills that come in handy when the company wishes to increase creativity and develop innovative solutions. That being said, employers are not defined by their background, but rather enriched by it.

 

Integration

Integration can be designed as an ongoing process in which all the qualified bidders are taken in consideration and where the focus lies on giving everyone a fair, unbiased chance and not concentrating on excluding some or stop hiring and promoting the typical profile.

Inclusion is shifting attention towards bringing people in as a substitute for keeping people out.

A workplace that focuses on a culture that is accepting of diverse profiles and that includes everyone is on their way of designing the job environment for the future workforce.

This is done by designing a workplace where employers can all have lunch together, make company activities so people interact with each other beyond work tasks and be aware of the employers work-life balance.

Look beyond culture fit when hiring for new positions. By looking for someone who will compliment your work culture you end up having a fresh mindset that will improve and bring new insights to your team. Teams created by like minded employers with a similar cultural heritage and educational background tend to become homogeneous thus making growth and development a slow process.

 

It all starts with the leadership

Include training in cultural awareness, diversity and inclusion. Set guidelines that will ensure the implementation of processes that support and embrace diversity in the workplace.

Measure the progress of the inclusion efforts with the help of analytics. There are relatively easy options to help eliminate bias from inclusion and diversity processes. Analytics help identify and minimise unconscious prejudice throughout the HR departments.

The first step in combating bias is to be aware of it. Once recruiters become aware of this, they will be more likely to screen for a broader candidate base.

Optimize the hiring process so it is based solely on merit and not cultural heritage, race or simply a name that sounds foreign, and continue with the career advancement processes in promotions and leadership development. Focus on these issues and give a fair chance to all candidates and therefore enhance employee involvement and give them a memorable employee experience.

 

Business value in diversity

There is revenue to be gained by D&I. The benefits are numerous, starting with increased creativity and innovation. A recent BCG study shows that companies with a diverse leadership have 19% higher revenue. This is the result of a diverse team that will inspire each other and come up with more diverse solutions to the company’s problems.

Creativity is broken loose, more innovative solutions come on the table, you get a competitive advantage and the employees are engaged and motivated to do their job knowing that their actions are acknowledged and they have a fair chance of advancement. As a result you get a positive reputation which enhances your talent pool.

–for those curious minds a talent pool is a database where hr managers keep all their top job candidates.–

The only offset is that it takes time and engagement to change the way things have been working out so far, and naturally the beginning might be rocky, so keep at it if you want to see results.

 

Future predictions

We are facing a accelerating globalisation and advancement in technology and access to education. Therefore the future of the talent pool is expected to grow in the future, in fact, according to The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

“the number of young people aged 25-34 with a tertiary qualification increased by nearly 45% between 2005 and 2013 in OECD and G20 countries and is expected to keep increasing in the coming decade”.

Though migration may make a difference in where the future workforce will come from, the OECD predicts that the individuals with a higher education in the working age population from the EU countries is likely to increase from 26% in 2015 to 34% .”

By 2030 more than 60% of science, technology, engineering and mathematics(STEM) educated young people will come from non OECD countries mainly India and China.

Different people with different

An HR-ON perspective on a diverse workplace

An HR-ON perspective on a diverse workplace 1200 628 HR-ON

Because

Having a diverse workplace, as in our company HR-ON, can be an immense advantage, not only from a personal point of view, but above all business-wise.

In this article, we will list the positive changes that we have experienced by having a diverse workplace with colleagues from different cultures and with disparate backgrounds.

  1. A continuous flow of great ideas

    In a diverse workplace, engaging in personal and professional experiences together can be like a volcanic eruption of brilliant ideas. Most of the new features in our e-recruitment system were born in this way!

  2. A considerable ability to adapt

    Many of our co-workers come from other countries than Denmark. So they have had to adapt to life here. And because of a diverse workplace, this is no problem at all. And, they will definitely spice up your working day!

  3. An improvement in your company culture

    Today, it’s all about employer branding, and you will have a powerful recruitment tool by setting up a diverse and talented team.

  4. An enhancement to applicant variety

    If a future applicant checks your company page, and sees that the company is diverse, they will feel more encouraged to apply. This has even been the case with some of our colleagues.

  5. A wider range of abilities

    Every culture has many peculiar characteristics that can be translated to professional skills. And also personal abilities to use as an advantage for your company. Some of us are more structured and analytical and others are more “free-thinkers”. However, we managed to find the right balance and to learn a lot from each other.

  6. Many new perspectives

    Do you have a problem you just can’t seem to find the solution to? A different perspective is what you need! Therefore, ask your co-workers and you might find a solution.

  7. An exciting boost to your productivity

    When the employees are in a good environment, their productivity and commitment to the company increase considerably. Our developers couldn’t agree more!

  8. More challenges to face

    Working with similar people might seem more comfortable and easy. While a multicultural and diverse environment might seem more challenging. But, in the long run it will be more rewarding and exciting to work in such an environment.

 

WHAT DO OUR COLLEAGUES SAY?

Image of Hr-on employee

Birthe, Customers Support & Communication:

We are about 18 people at our office, and we represent eight different countries. I like the variety of the languages and cultures. Because it’s nice to be able to practice my language skills. And partly because it gives a nice vibe to the office when we’re not all from the same country, with the same traditions. We hear about other traditions and cultures – and we taste different food!

Björgvin Gudjónsson

Bjorgvin, Brand Manager:

The benefit of working in a diverse workplace, is that you get to know a lot of fantastic people,. They have useful and inspiring personal and professional trades, that you can learn a lot from. It’s all about working together, finding our strengths and weaknesses and to develop as professionals in the most optimal way – “taking the best of both worlds”

Image of Hr-on employee

Yelizaveta, Marketing and Sales Coordinator

For me it’s an everlasting source of learning from each other, which allows to solve issues in a faster and more effective way. Diversity keeps changing and improving crucial things around in a better way.

 

For more information on HR-ON check out our website and other main article, for example: Why you should recruit diverse employees

Reasons to recruit diverse employees

Top reasons to recruit diverse employees

Top reasons to recruit diverse employees 1200 628 HR-ON

Many people unconsciously recruit people with similar profiles to their own. But there are many advantages in looking at the alternative profiles and promoting a diverse workplace. This article will highlight the top reasons to recruit diverse employees.

In many companies, the workforce is very homogeneous. It is, after all, easier to recruit people just like you. But is this always an advantage? Not according to the manager at HR-ON, Ali E. Cevik. He has matched hundreds of candidates with the right company over the years.

“I have facilitated and held skill development courses since 2003. I found that the teams who were diverse in gender, culture, and age were remarkably better than the homogeneous teams.”

Ali thinks that diversity should be seen as a strength and points out that with diversity follows an enormous potential for innovation which is seldom fully utilized. His point is supported by a report by McKinsey & Company.

Core values are as important as qualifications

Ali has, in the span of his career, helped to place more than 400 candidates in different companies. His point is that companies should focus on the core values of the potential candidates instead of only focusing on their professional qualifications. He has a positive experience with implementing this idea in recruitment.

“I helped to place a young refugee in a big consultancy where he was first made responsible for sales and later hired by the purchasing department,” says Ali and continues: “He had no experience, limited language skills, and no usable knowledge in the field he had to work in. But he got the chance and created his own position through his personal qualifications, willingness, and curiosity. At the same time, he created innovation in the organization and jobs for others. Had he not gotten the chance, he would have never come so far and made the results he did.”

Diversity is not only about giving the inexperienced candidates a chance. It is also about having better results as a team.

See this article about Value-based recruitment.

Diversity for a better workplace environment

It is not only the practical work that profits from diversity recruitment. ”It is also a very strong employer brand to be able to collaborate with diversity and core values instead of the classic economic incentives,” says Ali.

In terms of creating more job satisfaction among the employees, the research Good Workers’ Index 2015, also points out that meaningful and positive relationships with colleagues and management are by far the most important elements of a good work life.

A diverse workplace can help to promote learning, creativity, and innovation. It is important to create close relationships in the workplace.

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