International business 4

Valerie Scoular Global HR Director Dentsu Aegis Network

Global HR Director
Dentsu Aegis Network
Valerie Scoular

A high performance culture with richer experiences and the greatest opportunities

Since 2013 we have grown from 15,000 to over 38,000 diverse and talented individuals. We are a bigger, better business and we retain our ambitious, challenger mindset. Our high performance and continued success is fuelled by our culture – one vision and one set of values uniting our people across brands, markets, and functions. Our values of agile, collaborative, pioneering, responsible, and ambitious are at the heart of our culture. These values guide the behaviours, actions, and mindsets needed to deliver our vision of Innovating the way brands are built.

Every year we conduct an extensive employee engagement survey which is used to inform and guide our people and business strategy. It also provides a channel for employees to feed back and tell us how we are performing. The survey results are extremely positive with a response rate of 90% and an overall engagement score of 73%, with 80% of the results exceeding the external media norm.

Our people strategy is focussed on growing our leadership for 2020 and supporting and enabling them to succeed for our clients, people, business, and society. This is done in the context of the pace and speed of change in the digital economy and the increasing need to navigate complexity while embracing new and innovative ways of working. In this business environment, great leadership is more critical than ever.

Leadership@DAN: re-defining leadership in the digital age

In this context, we reviewed what leadership means for 2020, the digital economy and as Dentsu Aegis Network continues to scale and grow. Our data and research showed that while 85% of people said leadership should retain much of the same qualities, it should be refined for the digital age. The new framework is based on leadership mindsets and is shaped around our five values which provide a simple, effective, and differentiating way of defining what Leadership@DAN means for us. To support our people, we are now embedding and bringing this new framework to life across multiple employee touchpoints from hiring decisions, feedback tools and guidance.

The people strategy also focuses on supporting, growing and retaining our talented people. We do this by providing stretch careers and experiences enabling people to gain the knowledge and skills to deliver for our clients. By using the scale of our network, we facilitate career moves and development opportunities across the business, helping to develop global leaders. The data from the employee survey and analysis of employee turnover tells us that career development is a key driver of engagement.

Route 500 – accelerated careers at the forefront of the digital economy

Route 500 is our unique career accelerator programme, enabling the career moves of our high potential employees. It supports people to drive their career and move into critical leadership roles by providing access to new development opportunities; a network of people across the business; and resources to further develop leadership capabilities. It also creates a global pool of talent with the right skills and the relevant experiences for our clients and our business.

New trends in employee expectations about working practices were identified through our employee survey. The drivers of freedom, control, and responsibility were first highlighted through gender diversity and our female population, and they were also shared by our millennial employees.

Agile working – empowering employees to perform to their best

Part of the success of Dentsu Aegis Network is our ability to be agile, fast, and flexible. Empowerment, collaboration, and agile working practices are key drivers of the success of our unique operating model which delivers integrated solutions to our clients. In our employee engagement survey, empowerment scores highly with 86% of respondents saying they are able to make the decisions they need to perform in their role. This level of empowerment is also critically important as employees are increasingly wanting more choice in when and how they work. It also underpins our commitment to attracting new and diverse world-class talent into the organization. To further bring this to life for our business, we define agile working as, empowering people to perform to their best; to deliver results with the freedom and responsibility to decide when and where they work.

While balancing commitments to our clients and maximizing the benefits of collaborating with colleagues in the office, agile working turbo boosts our unique operating model and empowers our people to deliver results with maximum flexibility and minimal constraints.

By attracting, developing, and retaining world-class talent we can continue to drive stronger performance and create different and better solutions for our clients.