2023 HR Priorities for U.S. Bank

The Next Practices Weekly call series has become a well-attended and wide-ranging discussion for HR leaders each Thursday at 11am ET / 8am PT. On this week's call, i4cp' s VP of Member Services, Mark Walker, and Senior Research Analyst Tom Stone, facilitated a conversation with special guest Elcio Barcelos, Senior Executive Vice President and CHRO at US Bank. Here are some highlights from the call:

  • Barcelos joined US Bank as CHRO in 2020, several months after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • His philosophy is that HR's purpose is not rooted in policies and procedures, but rather to enable business outcomes through talent.
  • To accomplish this, a major digital transformation was needed, mirroring the ongoing digital transformation that the entire organization has undergone (i.e., over 80% of transactions at the bank today are digital).
  • HR also needed to become more consultative with the business, and one focus area was on the role of HRBPs. They were given a new title, Talent Consultants, to better capture the strategic role they were going to play going forward. Significant upskilling, including in areas such as financial and business acumen, was provided so that those in this role could truly consult on all talent matters.
  • Barcelos shared the journey that US Bank has been on regarding their overall employee value proposition (EVP). This has included attention to various employee offerings, including a change to maternity leave as well as their approach to the minimum wage, first raising it to $18/hr and then $20/hr, with other compensation adjustments then made across the organization to stay in alignment.
  • In 2021 they instituted major changes to their talent acquisition engine, and in 2022 they reaped the benefits of that as they were able to hire nearly 24,000 new employees across the organization globally (a big number given their approximately 77,000 total employee population size.)
  • L&D will be a major focus in 2023, both in terms of change and growth to the function at US Bank and regarding the organization pivoting to a broader skills-centric approach to all talent processes. Barcelos said they are going to "reinvent learning" in 2023.
  • Specifically, very few organizations think of L&D as what skills do I have, what do I need, and how do I bridge that gap?  They will be enabling employees to take a purposeful view of the top five skills they need today, top five they need tomorrow, how do they get there?
  • Regarding skills, in the past, they were viewed as elements of the job description. Skills make up capabilities which in turn are required by the role. Skills really are the essence of everything that is done, so they can and should be the common language when it comes to talent in the organization. That said, in some areas a focus skills is more critical than in others. So the focus will be on critical skills and critical roles, and a pilot approach will be taken to avoid trying to boil the ocean.
  • From the employee's perspective, transparency of the work on skills is key. Employees have aspirations, and need to understand what is available, what opportunities exist, from classes, to job rotation, and more. The benefits here are a win-win, for the employees themselves and to have a more inspired workforce overall.
  • Barcelos noted that key elements of their HR tech stack include Workday, ServiceNow, Edcast, and Phenom.

Links to resources shared on the call: