HR Leaders in Retail Discuss HR Tech Trends in Asia

Links International works with a lot of retailers, both in terms of retail recruitment in Asia, and also in providing HR outsourcing solutions for retailers in Asia. Over the past few years we had noticed a lack of retail-specific HR groups in Hong Kong and Macau. We therefore created HR Leaders in Retail Group, an exclusive, invitation-only group for HR Managers and HR Directors in the retail industry based in Hong Kong and Macau. The aim was to create an informal and interactive forum for HR leaders in the retail industry to discuss common HR challenges that they are facing.


In order to put this group together, we first sent out a survey to our retail contacts to gauge which topics they would be most interested in discussing. These topics included HR technology, flexible work practices, predictions on retail recovery, retail in Macau and HR’s role in crisis management.

Today, Links International held its first HR Leaders in Retail event over breakfast in the stunning Presidents’ Room at the American Club in Exchange Square. A group of around 14 of us gathered together to discuss HR Technology and how it can be used to elevate HR’s role in the industry, based on the findings from our HR Tech in Asia Survey. The event was co-chaired by Links’ COO, Scott Thomson, together with Vanessa Iloste from DFS, who presented an interesting and engaging discussion about the most commonly used HR tech and HR practices in Asia, giving specific examples of how these can benefit HR professionals, with a particular focus on the retail industry.


 The event kicked off with an interactive “true or false” game, based around which HR tech or practices are used effectively and which are not used enough. The discussion then focused on two particular technologies that are proving hugely successful for HR leaders: digital or video interviews, and HR analytics.

Video interviews are something that we at Links use for our internal recruitment when hiring consultants and interns to join our team. Compared with a traditional CV, using video interviews to screen candidates can save a lot of time and give you a much better overall picture of your potential next hire, as you are able to see how they perform on camera, if they are interested enough to make an effort and treat it as a normal interview, and get to know a little more about their personality than you could by reading a piece of paper about them. Not only this, but you can easily evaluate and share the interview with others in your team and you can scale the interview for mass recruitment projects or evergreen positions by setting up a single interview with straightforward questions.

HR Analytics are used to leverage transactional HR data, such as performance reviews, leave records, payroll records and so on, to not only provide more credibility, but also to predict outcomes and focus on higher value, strategic work that will help to grow the business. HR Analytics stems from the issue, or perceived issue, that HR has a huge amount of data but does not leverage it as well as other functions, such as finance. HR is sometimes considered the “little brother” of other business functions in terms of influence at leadership level.

Leveraging this data is vital, yet it needn’t be complicated or expensive. A lot of vendors, including Links International, provide HR Analytics as a Service, allowing HR professionals to record and analyse their transactional data, without having to hire an analytics skill set, or buy a system.

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The first HR Leaders in Retail event was a huge success and we look forward to hosting more of these events, each focused around a different topic, in future. Should you be interested in joining this exclusive group, please contact us for an invitation.

Are you using HR technology and HR practices to help elevate your role and get the best out of your HR function? Download our free HR Tech in Asia report to learn more about what’s trending in HR technology.

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