Metinvest Holding LLC is a major player in the mining and metals industry and, with 82,000 employees, one of the largest employers in Eastern Europe. Despite this, recruiting the next generation of its workforce is proving to be a significant challenge.

While qualified, skilled specialists have always been in high demand, attracting young people to build a career in mining and metals is more difficult than ever. Competition from global brands and cool startups in the tech, retail, and services sectors — among others — has left traditional industries out of touch with millennials.

It is an issue that Yuliya Ryakhovskaya, Human Resources (HR) Automation leader and Business Support director at Metinvest, knows all too well. “Recruiting young talent is one of the biggest business challenges we currently face,” she says. “Experience is a key differentiator. Millennials typically want to work for companies that offer a modern workplace experience.”

Adopting a Digital Culture

To attract the young talent that it needs for the future, Metinvest needed to build a digital culture.

The first step of this digital HR transformation was to rethink performance management, a previously paper-based process that varied department by department.

Metinvest Digital, IT partner of Metinvest, rolled out the SAP SuccessFactors Performance & Goals solution at six group subsidiaries for 40,000 employees, including blue-collar workers. Employees can set annual, quarterly, and monthly performance goals, complete self-assessments, track their achievements, and interact with managers at their own convenience.

“There’s much more regular communication between employees and managers,” Ryakhovskaya says. “We’re working hard to build an open, transparent company culture where employees feel listened to and valued, and SAP SuccessFactors solutions are a big part of this.”

Employees now manage their performance digitally, rather than having to regularly fill in paper forms.

“There’s much more flexibility, as employees can do everything at their own convenience, 24/7, with mobile devices,” remarks Ryakhovskaya. “We’re not digitalizing processes just for the sake of ‘going digital,’ but to change people’s mindsets and behaviors. Engagement with performance and goals management has increased thanks to the use of digital technologies, including SAP SuccessFactors solutions. It’s only when employees understand the value of the technology that we begin to see the benefits.”

The strategy has also reduced the time spent on performance management tasks by 50 percent on average for employees and managers alike. Metinvest expects to save US$2 million over the next five years as a result of the current implementation project.

Building a Brighter Future

SAP SuccessFactors Performance & Goals has laid the groundwork for a fully digital employee experience at Metinvest in the near future — a key competitive advantage when it comes to recruiting millennials.

“Replacing manual processes with a mobile app is a game changer,” Ryakhovskaya says. “Millennials aren’t interested in performing routine, repetitive tasks. They expect a frictionless digital experience — and that’s exactly what we can now deliver. A digital culture enabled by SAP SuccessFactors solutions will increase our employer branding and help us secure the bright young talent we need to fill the jobs of tomorrow.”