Leadership interview: Hilti discussing the power of placing people at the heart of business

Interviewing the interviewer

Being recognised as one of the best workplaces in the 2020 Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For and 2019 Best Place to Work by Glassdoor, and ranked among the top employers by the Great Place to Work Institute multiple times, Hilti Group is committed to investing in their people and culture. In this interview, we ask Ir. Michael Leung, General Manager and LK Tong, HR Manager of Hilti Hong Kong, to reveal their approach to attracting and securing an array of young talent for their company development.

How do you attract the right talent and what do you think are their motivations?

Hilti has always been a people-oriented company and we spend a lot of efforts on people development. The average age of Hilti’s employees is around 34 years old, our young and energetic culture has always been an appealing factor when attracting young candidates.

We understand salary is no longer the most important factor to the candidates nowadays when deciding a job. Talent, especially for young candidates, also consider non-monetary elements such as empowerment, flexibility for completing works assigned and whether their employers would listen to their feedback for improvement. They also value their actual involvement in the job and the sense of belonging.

How do you retain your employees in the war for talent?

Hilti does pay a lot of attention to employees’ career development with actions. Our management team communicates with employees frequently to understand their career aspirations at Hilti. For example last year, we involved 200 staff in this kind of communication by spending two days with them on discussing and collecting all their voices and feedback.

At the same time, we always encourage our employees to “get out of your comfort zone” by promoting job rotations and flexibility.  Our HR team also invest in fast-tracking employees’ learning path by holding related events, such as arranging tutorials and workshops to upskill their capabilities continuously.

How have you demonstrated your core values during Covid-19?

The word “WE” could summarise well the value Hilti has upheld during this healthcare crisis. We understand the greatest concern of employees is job stability during difficult times, and that is something we have assured them in the thick of this global pandemic.

In order to protect our employees’ health and wellbeing, we purchased masks, hand sanitisers and other hygiene products at the beginning of Covid-19 period when there was a huge shortage in Hong Kong.

At the same time, Hilti kept investing in both software and hardware for employees to adapt to the market change and the contingency actions under the pandemic including system enhancement to provide higher flexibility for the day-to-day operations. For example, with the need of working from home; laptop, headset and other related devices were delivered to employees’ home to ensure they could stay at home and work comfortably at the same time.

How do you see the Hong Kong Construction and Engineering market in 2021 and beyond?

We are confident that the construction market will be positive in a long run. There are many large-scale construction projects ongoing in the market such as Central Kowloon Route, Kai Tak Spork Park, Third-Runway System, various sewage treatment plants development etc.; not to mention those that haven’t been awarded such as the relocation of Sha Tin Sewage treatment plant and the last sizable contract of Third runway system etc. 

Other than that, many companies have stepped up on developing BIM teams by spending resources and assigning specialists on Modular Integrated Construction (MIC) projects, as well as using more digital tools in asset management. For Hilti, we have an asset management system called ON!Track – by continuing to develop and invest in new digital tools, we hope to save more time on construction projects and maintain our competitive edge.

Stay tuned for more Construction & Engineering leadership interviews by Dicky Leung, Manager, Robert Walters Hong Kong.

Alternatively, contact Dicky for hiring Construction, Property & Engineering talent in Hong Kong. 


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