Jovana Ivanović, HR Director, Coca-Cola HBC Serbia

Always Striving To Be Better

Although we are already one of the most desirable employers, we will strive to be even better in the future!

Major global companies realised the relevance of HR managers and the role of this position long ago. Jovana Ivanović, the new HR director of Coca-Cola HBC Serbia, reveals how Coca-Cola HBC Serbia motivates its employees and contributes to their professional development, and why the HR role is so important. With the decade of experience in the HR sector that she brings to this position, she will contribute to even greater successes in improving employee performance, capabilities and engagement, as well as the company’s overall business culture.

How did the COVID-19 Pandemic change your approach to employee management and the HR role?


A strange year, to say the least, is behind us. A lot changed, but our commitment to employee well-being did not. In the first weeks, we demonstrated skills that we’d only trained in theory before. This primarily relates to agility and adaptation to the changes in the working environment on an almost daily basis. I am particularly proud of the fact that our employees expressed incredible collegiality and solidarity by creating a safe place for work, caring for their own and their colleagues’ health, together with the company management.

Under such circumstances, I can say that the role of a HR manager is even more complex, because, for instance, we have people who continued to work in the field, then those who’ve been working from home for a year now, and those who have to come to the plant due to the nature of their jobs. Our aim is to offer everyone the same level of ‘service’, specifically in the sense of effective communication, opportunities to educate themselves online and psychological support via free sessions with experts. When now, nearly a year after the outbreak of the pandemic, employees perform their activities with even stronger commitment and still feel a bond with their colleagues and the company, you know that a good job is being done and that the HR role has achieved its purpose.

The title of the most desirable employer is a result of years of hard work on ensuring good working conditions and creating a working atmosphere that generates creative development, critical thinking and healthy competition

Coca-Cola HBC Serbia has been at the very top of various survey-based rankings of the most desirable employers for years. What contributes to these excellent results?

Just as the Coca-Cola recipe is a secret, how Coca-Cola HBC Serbia has managed to stay in the position of the most desirable employer will also remain a secret. What I can tell you is that the title of the most desirable employer is a result of years of hard work on ensuring good working conditions and creating a working atmosphere that generates creative development, critical thinking and healthy competition.

Our employees have an absolute opportunity to reach their full professional potential. In that sense, we support their development, both vertically and horizontally, enabling them to explore their preferences and short- and longterm professional aspirations. Additionally, as our company operates on 28 markets worldwide, there are myriad opportunities to gain global knowhow and experience.

Another important element is our authentic corporate culture, practised by existing employees and developed further by new ones. All that combined makes us a good employer for more than 1,400 employees and a highly desirable employer for those who wish to join our winning team.

What will be in the focus of the Coca- Cola HBC Serbia HR sector in the period ahead? Our absolute priority in the coming period is the simultaneous development of employees and new technologies, especially bearing in mind that our company and the whole society have undergone an accelerated digitisation process during the previous period.

We will continue to listen carefully to the professional preferences of people in the company and strive to successfully harmonise the ambitions of employees with the jobs they perform, being professional and fair in selecting and assessing future recruits. In short, although we are already one of the most desirable employers, we will strive to be even better in the future!

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