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This Revolutionary Workforce Model Is a Win-Win

A podcast interview with
A father is working at home on a laptop at a desk. His daughter, wearing a pink dress and a crown, balances her stuffed panda on his shoulders while he tries to work.

Workplace flexibility is high on the business agenda, and as a result, organizations are looking at adjustments to their work operating model. This has big implications for people responsible for talent management. 

The New Shape of Work podcast addresses the challenges and uncertainty in the workplace and focuses on how we transition to a more agile workforce for the future. In this episode, Placid Jover, Unilever’s VP HR for Latin America, talks about a new approach to talent management that balances the need for critical skills and workforce flexibility to help both the company and employees succeed.

On delivering security and flexibility to the workforce:

We have found a way of creating the third way … we have built an employment model — a new type of contract that is a hybrid — sits in between being a full-time equivalent and being a gig worker. It’s an employment contract that actually delivers on [security and flexibility]. 

On meeting the needs of various groups:

For people also that are phasing into retirement … or that they are probably at that stage in life where they don’t need to work 24/7, but they don’t want to lose the fact that they could be active contributors to society … that’s a beautiful employment contract. 

What we learned was that yes, there are many people that … decided to join [this work model]. … But there were also two segments that … we were surprised by the uptake. One was returning moms.  Professionals on the back of maternity — they would love to stay connected to a company … but not really to work as they did before. [This model] allowed us to retain really good people with trusted skills and to keep them connected to our ecosystem and these are people that otherwise, most likely, we would have lost. 

On how this model benefits the business:

The way we’ve thought through this model makes it affordable for our P&L, it is sustainable over time, and it’s something … that is responsible as an employer and toward our employees. I think everybody wins with this model. Everybody wins. … These types of employment models … could be the next big thing after the creation of pensions because they deliver on that promise of flexibility and security.


Placid Jover

Vice President of HR for Latin America at Unilever

Placid Jover is the vice president of HR for Latin America at Unilever. Jover has played a key role at the leading edge of some of Unilever’s most innovative people and culture strategies and has a profound passion for driving change. With experience across the UK, mainland Europe and LATAM, he brings a wealth of knowledge to bear.

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