Ivana Ivić, Head Of HR Department At UniCredit Bank Serbia:

Culture And Innovations To Foster Business

The banking sector is extremely dynamic and diverse, and requires a variety of skills. It is therefore very important that the employee can follow all activities and adapt quickly to different business scenarios

It is with the same goal that UniCredit Bank Serbia is developing leaders and talented individuals in leadership skills and in motivating and retaining high-achieving employees who possess high potential.

The banking sector is extremely dynamic and very flexible in terms of adapting operations to a fast-changing environment. In such an environment, how do you adopt the required variety of skills to achieve the goals of the company and the contribution of employees to achieving those goals?

– Since the beginning of the global economic crisis, we haven’t reduced our number of employees, rather, on the contrary, that number has been growing in Serbia. What is equally important is that we constantly invest in our employees. Special emphasis during the past year has been placed on a culture of agility, innovation and a focus on clients. A number of training courses and workshops were organised with the aim of familiarising members of the Management team, as well as the first and second lines of the hierarchy, with new methods of work, ways in which organisations and individuals can innovate, as well as awareness of the importance of digital transformation for business in general. We continuously provide full support to business in achieving results through the improvement of their organisational culture, which implies innovation, agility and giving feedback.

As part of UniCredit SpA, which is present in numerous European countries, which principles is your HR system in Serbia based on and does it differ from market to market?

– A strong geographical presence in 14 countries throughout Europe, where we operate through our banks, represents one of our main competitive advantages. Not only does it give us the possibility to benefit from the local knowledge and expertise of UniCredit’s people, developing strong cooperation, but also to fully exploit best practises deriving from different geographies, adapting them to each local market. Employees were provided with lots of internal and external training, with “rotation at work” programmes, either in our country or elsewhere in the Group, planned and held, providing employees with the opportunity to gain a broader perspective, learn the technical skills they need, or gain international experience.

The declaration promotes a set of specific, concrete actions to support work-life balance across UniCredit Group. New technologies are implemented to make best use of people’s resources, in terms of both skills and time, while respecting their private life

UniCredit was among the first banks to adopt the Declaration on Work and Life Balance. Besides that, you implemented different activities with the aim of create a working environment that best suits employees?

– The declaration promotes a set of specific, concrete actions to support work-life balance across UniCredit Group. New technologies are implemented to make best use of people’s resources, in terms of both skills and time, while respecting their private life. The document calls for a general approach to setting target standards in all countries where the Group is present, with five macro-areas of focus: Digitisation, Space and time flexibility, Time management at work, Well-being and Cultural change. At UniCredit, we believe in the importance of respect. Taking into consideration both personal and professional interests must be at the heart of everything we do. This will help us create a culture that enhances the value that each and every one of us can contribute. We have already enabled employees to work from home, to have flexible working hours, every Wednesday for us is ‘Healthy’, since we provide fruit for all employees. Moreover, as of last year all our employees have had private health insurance. We have also launched an initiative not to send emails after working hours, in order for us to spend more quality time with friends and family. We will continue with such activities, since our goal is to make UniCredit Bank the best place to work.