Empowering employees

PUBLISHED : Monday, 25 May, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 25 May, 2009, 12:00am

Slick operations and a global network are almost par for the course in the express logistics sector, so being regarded as best in class takes something extra.

'We empower employees to take discretionary decisions and expect them to do the right thing out in the field. But you need to reinforce constantly to make it a living culture,' said Clifton Chua, managing director for Hong and Macau at FedEx Express, which ranked sixth in the Best Employers in Hong Kong 2009 study.

Instilling those values, Mr Chua noted, essentially came down to good motivation, targeted training, and acting decisively on the feedback from internal surveys.

The basic survey contained about 30 questions. There were a few different questions each year to cover new ground and enhance the integrity of the process. And, while the scores for particular work groups helped to measure the morale of the organisation, the real benefit of the exercise was in identifying concerns and expecting action.

'The system is very broad-based, so it tests the integrity of the decision making and helps me to see if there are particular structural issues to deal with. Each work group manager must also conduct regular meetings to hear concerns and discuss opportunities, and there is a grievance handling process which guarantees fair treatment.'