How a smartwatch inspired to innovate the HR industry

Growth

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July 30, 2019

September 2, 2019

A smartwatch has led Reindert Kriek (37) to his current position, Head of VIE People’s brand-new Rotterdam branch. “I was using analytics as a tool to improve my own wellbeing but the biggest revelation in my working life was when I started linking this insight to the HR industry.”

Freedom to guide a new office

Reindert Kriek’s voice radiates with boyish excitement when speaking about the freedom he has been given to lead the Rotterdam office of VIE People, which has its opening party on September 4th. His task will be to guide the new branch to become an autonomous office while sharing the core values of its significant other in Amsterdam. No unnecessary bureaucracy, no reporting to managers, no staff departments. An HR-consultancy firm without an HR-department? Exactly.

Using the A12 to divide and conquer the country's fast-growing enterprises, the Amsterdam office will continue to take on clients north of the highway. The brand-new Rotterdam branch will assist entrepreneurs with their HR challenges in the south. “We needed to keep true ownership of the tasks, our clients and the products we develop. By splitting the company early on, our targets are becoming much more attainable.”  

3,5 to 4 hours of sleep a day

Adopting a growth-mindset was key in obtaining his current position, Reindert admits. Guided by a simple piece of technology he started on a journey of self-discovery.

“I began to track my every move with my new smartwatch. My sleeping pattern, my food intake, my calories. Soon I found out I only slept for about 3,5 to 4 hours a day.”

That realization led him to subtly tweak patterns and experiment with forming new habits. Instead of his occasional runs Reindert took up CrossFit. Being physically exhausted by burning more than twice as much energy increased the quality of his sleep. “I was using analytics as a tool to improve my own wellbeing but the biggest revelation in my working life was when I started linking this insight to the HR industry.”

Proving the effectiveness of HR

Quantifying the added value of HR products, trainings and tools is what Reindert aims to do in Rotterdam.

“HR is often frowned upon and not viewed as cost-effective, but entrepreneurs should look at the bigger picture.”

Tracking and combining employee and revenue data and tweaking HR strategy accordingly can be a huge money-saver. “We want to start using data to predict the effects of introducing a company culture based on vulnerability, psychological safety and having clear targets on employee engagement and revenue.” This analytical approach to HR gives entrepreneurs the chance to lead by facts instead of only gut feeling. Solid sleep guaranteed, even without a smartwatch.

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