The Shape of Work

#183: Shaakun Khanna on how to avoid digital transformation failure, and essential components of a successful L&D strategy

January 19, 2022 Springworks Season 1 Episode 183
The Shape of Work
#183: Shaakun Khanna on how to avoid digital transformation failure, and essential components of a successful L&D strategy
Show Notes Chapter Markers

“Only sustainable policy is no policy.”

All about taking risks and exploring opportunities, our next guest is Shaakun Khanna, Leader of Human Capital Management at Oracle.

Shaakun practices what he preaches. He took up all the exciting opportunities that came his way. Prior to working at Oracle, he held various high-level positions at giants like The Tata Group, ICICI Bank, ManpowerGroup, IBM. He also founded his own company called Consentus Advisory which specialized in enhancing the effectiveness of business organizations. Over the last 25 years, there's truly nothing Shaakun hasn’t done when it comes to his career growth.

He has been a consultant to many Fortune 500 organizations in areas of Talent Management, Organization Design & Transformation, Employee Engagement, Leadership Development, and Succession Planning.

Episode Highlights:

  • Transformation of HR function at Oracle
  • How organisations can achieve ‘Family experience, the new yardstick of employee experience’
  • How to avoid digital transformation failure
  • Essential components of a successful L&D strategy
  • Future of AI
  • Top L&D trends for 2022

1. Oracle’s transformation in Human Resource 

Shaakun explains that technology becomes accessible only through conversion. He gives an example of integrating accessories in the car for a couple of decades where the actual originality of the car changes. However, there is no need for such things now as company-fitted technologies are available. 

The same goes for transformation in HR, according to him. Companies like Oracle realised the need of integrating technologies on top of anything and worked on that. He explains that instead of asking employees to provide their details again on the last day of working, they managed to create a holistic experience by asking only incremental information like PAN number or bank account number. He explains that embedded technologies empower data analytics and provide a lot of insights that are not possible with systems that aren’t embedded. 

2. Correlation between employee experience and family experience 

Shaakun feels that family has become an integral part of our work after the pandemic. Like they expect transparency in the family, employees also seek transparency at the workplace. Families try their best to make a member successful in their lives and similarly, employees are now expecting companies to work on the same lines. He also feels that the policies can be adapted contextually with the exception of statutory requirements. Exposing vulnerabilities is important for leaders just like they do in the family. It helps other people voice out their opinions and the energy in the workplace becomes positive. 

Technology has made it easier to learn new things and motivated people to change their careers. Earlier, people would stick in the same industry for their lifetime, but new age people change at least 7 careers and 20 jobs during their career span. Organizations should learn how to leverage new skills learnt by their employees to prevent them from seeking jobs elsewhere. 

3. Advice for HR in building a successful L&D (Learning and Development) strategy

Shaakun feels that the L&D community doesn’t have an understanding of the business yet. Therefore, they must acquire more business acumen and start learning the pains of leaders like CEO, CFO, etc. After that, they must learn to talk in their language and then convert the subjective aspects of the outcome into do

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(Cont.) #183: Shaakun Khanna on how to avoid digital transformation failure, and essential components of a successful L&D strategy