PG Group Gains Clear View Over Talent Horizon with SAP SuccessFactors

Industry-leading automotive and building glass manufacturing and retail company transforms talent capabilities with world-class HR solution

Staying ahead of the far-reaching changes in how companies attract, engage and retain talent can be overwhelming. In the case of PG Group, a leading manufacturer of automotive and building glass in Southern Africa that employs nearly 4 000 people, a completely reengineered HR and talent management capability held the key to its competitiveness as an employer of choice.

“We wanted to completely revamp our HR hiring processes, succession model and training regime to improve our competitiveness in attracting and retaining top talent,” says Barry Page, Group HR Systems Manager at PG Group. “We partnered with SAP Digital Business Services for a transformative project that has reengineered our recruitment management and marketing, performance management, succession, employee development and learning management processes.”

PG was established in 1897 and is currently headquartered in Johannesburg. The PG Group consists of PFG, Shatterprufe, PG Building Glass, PG Primador, PG Aluminium, PG Glass, Llumar, Widney, and PG Glass Africa and has an average turnover of R4-billion.

Page and his team worked with SAP Digital Business Services to roll out the project over PG Group’s entire South African operation, which included five corporate divisions. The first phase of the project launched in November 2018, with the final phase rolling out in August the following year.

According to Page, IT system integration was one of the biggest hurdles with the company’s new employment and management vision. “The biggest challenge we faced was the SuccessFactors Employee Central and SAP HCM Payroll system integrations. However, SAP was an invaluable asset in overcoming these challenges and ensuring a smooth rollout.”

Page and his team implemented Quality Gates to ensure the project rolled out in a timely manner. These Q-Gates, as they’re also referred to, allowed all stakeholders to agree on milestones, which were followed by formal sign-offs. The process allowed all areas of the project to be validated. Billing was a fundamental aspect of the project and was directly tied to each phase–this required full review and completion before moving onto the next phase.

Page credits the success of the project to the strength of the teams at every step of the process. “With SAP’s assistance, we commissioned three different teams to oversee different parts of the project. All parties involved were essential to the overall success of the project.”

The teams consisted of the Core Project Team, which met once a week and were responsible for assessing weekly requirements, reviewing the progress of the project, and implementing plans of action for any stumbling blocks. From here, a second weekly team was established–the Change Management Team–which would understand project requirements and action plans for anything that would impede progress. Finally, the Project Steering Committee met monthly to review processes, provide support for the project, and make sure it stayed on track.

“Thanks to SAP SuccessFactors, a recruitment hub has been established for future employees. An incredible 85% of our employees have established goals on the SuccessFactors PMGM System. This, in turn, has positively aided our mid-year Performance Appraisals process. We are now piloting Succession Management, which should roll out to all divisions once our talent processes have been completed. We are also constantly adding e-learning modules to our Learning Management system, which has seen a massive uptake from staff,” concludes Page.

Cameron Beveridge, Regional Director for Southern Africa at SAP Africa, believes Page and his team have created a powerful platform for effectively competing for top talent. “Delivering positive experiences to customers and employees is essential in the Experience Economy. With its recruitment and talent management capabilities now aligned to global best practice, PG Group can continue its proud history as one of South Africa’s oldest and most enduring companies.”