OEEC: Human Capital Panel – Lower for longer

How to navigate the downturn in the offshore and energy industry from a human capital perspective? That was the focus of the Human Capital Panel on Wednesday morning at Offshore Energy Exhibition & Conference.

The panelists, all with an HR background, shared their expertise under the guidance of two moderators. The discussion was formed around five statements. The panelists were Just In ‘t Velt (Group HR Director, ERIKS), Arnold de Vries (HR & Corporate Affairs Director, Damen Shipyards Group) and Alexander van Noort.

The three agreed that the right use of human capital could stimulate organizational success during this challenging industry climate, with a specific focus on optimizing organizational design, talent management, and leadership development. “It is all about the people,” summarized Just In ‘t Veld.

One of the statements was “Our industry is not sexy for Millennials.” Although all of them agreed that there is an image problem, they also said that it is more a case of not knowing the industry.

“Perhaps for young people leaving university it looks not sexy from the outside, but don’t forget we are a producing industry,” said Arnold de Vries. Alexander van Noort added: “Millennials want cool offices with slides and snooker tables. But if you work for Google or any other hip tech firm, basically you are just typing numbers into a computer. We make something real, that is very sexy.” Just In ‘t Veld admitted that he is having a hard time filling the pipeline when it comes to attracting young talent. “But our industry is incredibly attractive!”, he said.

That does not mean that there is no need for change. Alexander van Noort: “We need a radical change when it comes to management style. It does not have to be so hierarchical. Leaders have to see the employees as individuals and invest time to get to know them personally, so they can find out what drives them.”

The Human Capital Panel ended with a live poll. For your information; 62 percent of the public thinks that robotizing will reduce the workforce by 10 to 25 percent in the next five years.

Source: Navingo BV

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