Career track

Over the past few months, Personnel Today has been tracking the careers of
two HR professionals. This week we catch up with Duncan McIntosh (right), HR
services manager at insurance company Standard Life

– In the past couple of months I have been working in the following areas:

Developing key supplier relationships

Ongoing work has seen us identify the many (around 250) suppliers who have helped
us source new employees for the company over the past few years. Following a
business focused process we have now identified just under 20 suppliers of
recruitment services that we have invited to tender to provide recruitment

At the end of the process we hope to have 12 to 14 contracts in place, which
will leave us well placed to develop these relationships for mutual advantage.

Process improvements

We have been working for some time to improve the letters and contracts that
we use in HR. Not only are there issues in respect of legal matters and
terminology used, but it is important that for each individual offer made we
can be sure that we are using appropriate terms and conditions without starting
from scratch each time. It is an interesting HR conundrum in that we need to
retain control over the content of the contracts while encouraging line
managers to be more actively involved in the overall process. We believe our
proposed solution should strike this balance.

Personal development

Trying to get closer to all the work that goes on in the different areas of
my responsibilities, I recently spent a few hours on the HR helpdesk answering
calls from our customers. Despite having worked on a helpdesk back in the late
1980s, I found it a challenging experience responding to the many and varied
demands of the customers. It is clear from the calls received that we could
better use our HR intranet site ‘Lifeline’ to support some of the queries

I attended the Chartered Institute of Bankers in Scotland ‘Young Banker of
the Year’ competition and dinner. The topic this year was ‘loyalty’ and each of
the four finalists approached their presentation from a different angle. It has
made me consider the extent to which we build loyalty with our (mainly
internal) customers in HR and the extent to which HR should ‘brand’ its many

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