Realizing that people are the most important asset an agency has, the Tagline Group of Companies created Project Aurum. Project Aurum is a digital roadmap program that was applied throughout the entire Tagline Group of Companies that provides guidance to all employees on how they can advance and develop in their careers.
The roadmap is executed via a digital points based system connected to the individual employee career road map agreed upon during recruitment. This roadmap guides the employee from recruitment to resignation providing the employee an avenue to grow their talents purposefully and deliberately.
The objectives of the project are:
To allow the company to assess its realistic and actual servicing capacity based on the objective competencies and skills of its personnel, thereby properly quantifying how many competent employees are needed to achieve the company’s goals. This ensures that all talent is maximized and optimized with no wastage or shortage of talent.
To allow the company to properly and honestly assess objective weaknesses in competencies and skills so that it can acquire the necessary external resources to address this weakness.
Realizing that motivation is rooted in a concrete, transparent, objective and achievable goal, Project Aurum provides employees with a concrete career path structure that is scorecard driven. This leads to an objective promotion plan that provides constant avenues of growth as well as motivate the employee to act and fulfill their task with excellence.
Realizing that the company is only as strong as its staff, Project Aurum is designed to put all the employees at par, if not superior, with other industry practitioners by making them direct partners in their personal development as staff.
This company wide program also helps individual employees track their progress through gamification wherein points are awarded to employees for achieving certain measures. The points are manifested in scoreboards where each employee keeps track of their individual scores. This scoreboard is public allowing each employee to see where they stand and provide incentives and recognition to the employees when they achieve certain milestones. Furthermore, internal newsletters are circulated to excite the employees every quarter.
The project culminates at the end of the year with a glamorous awards night that honors employees who have demonstrated their Aurum or Gold value to the company through their achievements.
Project Aurum has manifested strong results in the company in 3 specific areas:
Employee Tenure: In an industry wherein employee churn is a year, Tagline has a high proportion of tenured employees. As of 2017 the 29% of employees have tenures of 5 years while 3% had 10 year tenures. On top of that, resignation rates have gone down progressively from 26% of the total employee base in 2014, to 19% in 2015, 12% in 2016 and an all time low of 9% for 2017. This indicates a high level of satisfaction with the company. The program has helped generate well-balanced and content employees due to the fact that assessment is objective driven and public. This removes demoralization that comes from politics or perceived subjective assessments. Employees have a clear direction of where they are going and this makes them inspired to stay longer.
Employee Competence – Project Aurum tracks an employee from recruitment all the way to resignation matching their skills from recruitment phase, creating an on boarding program for them, mapping their career and rewarding and recognizing their achievements. The program also has a curing and mentoring program to handle shortcomings and mold the employee into an Aurum level employee. This has improved competencies from across the board for the company. This has manifested in Tagline being recognized with awards like the Philip Morris Rookie of the Year Award in 2017 and the Johnson and Johnson Ripples Award in 2017. This year, Stevie Awards Asia Pacific and World Retail Awards also recognized two projects that were implemented by Tagline. This competence manifested in client feed back with the rating considerably moving up in the past years and ending at 93% last year.
Business Success – Project Aurum’s focus on the employees helped increase business growth across all the different Tagline companies. Since Aurum was introduced Tagline’s average growth of sales year on year has been at 32%. This is above average growth in an industry that is challenged by an over supply of competition. Furthermore Project Aurum has helped improve the acquisition rate of clients by an average of 15% per year. Client accounts serviced has also increased consistently with an average of 20% per year.
One of the constant feedback given by employees both past and present about the company is the uniqueness and strength of Project Aurum. Staff evaluation and talent management strategies are conservative in most Philippine companies with HR managers utilizing very traditional one-on-one evaluations. Realizing that the Tagline Group of Companies has a young median age, the strength of Project Aurum comes from its gamification of the employee journey. Instead of creating a sterile corporate employee roadmap, Tagline created a gamified journey with employees being briefed on the rules of the game. The point systems help inspire the employees and motivate healthy competition from each other. Culturally, this gamification resulted in employees having internal vocabulary on “Aurum worthy work” where they act as check and balances to one another. Staff encourages one another to be Aurum worthy. The public score boards and the year-end glamorous awards create a culture of encouragement and excitement to celebrate achievements. This is one of the best innovations of Project Aurum.
Majority of today’s workforce come from a generation dubbed the millennials. Critical to understanding millennial motivation is the focus on the pillars of concrete, transparent, objective and achievable goals. These values are key to the motivation of this generation. It’s therefore important when discussing modern HR roadmaps to ensure that these pillars are lived in their own ways.
Concrete – Job expectation is spelt out clearly from the beginning of the engagement. The rules to climb up the ladder are made clear and the employee is informed that decisions are made according to these rules. Once these rules are concrete the employees know what direction to take their careers on and can focus their energies on achieving these concrete goals.
Transparency – Modern workers value transparency in the sense that employee achievement is quantified. Everyone knows how the game is played and most importantly where does each person stand. All evaluation parameters are justified with objective measures. The public nature of Project Aurum allows employees to see where they stand. No secrets build their trust and rapport with management.
Objective – Since everything is quantified through points based on quantitative measures, evaluation and growth is detached from personal biases and focused simply on the numbers. This removes the element of politics and just focuses the reward on achievement.
Achievable – Project Aurum provided employees with an achievable road map that is specific enough to include potential dates when the employee can move up. Because the goals are measured quantitatively in a public setting, the employees know that the goal they are given is not impossible to reach. The only thing required of them is their determination to deliver what has been agreed upon in the Project.
Project Aurum therefore became the nexus for nurturing talent. By providing a nurturing environment coupled with a program that used principles of gamification employees felt that they had full control of their destinies thereby resulting in talent that consistently blossomed and grew.