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The HR itsme

04 July 2021

UQalify launched a HR and Learning profile that lasts a lifetime, offers a picture of who employees really are, and that can be used to match them with jobs and training. The Dutch Etil Research Corporation gratefully uses the possibilities on offer and becomes the first international partner.

The joint venture UQalify sees technology companies Nalantis and join forces. UQalify makes smart modular and connected HR platforms to match individuals with suitable jobs, training and coaching. The HR ecosystem also introduces an interactive and personal profile - myUQskills - that enables employees to discover their own potential and then share it and match with relevant providers. Founder and CEO Thierry Lescrauwaet: “A previous study with Antwerp Management School demonstrated that Belgian people can only list about three talents. They have difficulty assessing themselves. Our tool suggests at least 15 talents, giving a confidence boost. What’s more, we added a motivation compass and we developed a universal DigiSkills Passport in collaboration with Agoria. It offers an immediate and holistic view of who you are.”

Living profile

CEO Frank Aernout leads Nalantis, a language technology company. The company works on understanding language, semantically and linguistically. “HR language, in the case of UQalify. As experts in assessing skills from CVs, we worked together to create a personal competence profile that encompasses your entire career. It is life-changing, because you can use it to log in to external platforms and raise your profile. Your own talent and motivation, your digital hard skills and soft skills, as well as knowledge and experience are all contained within. It is a dynamic profile that accompanies you everywhere and adapts to what is happening. We are making upskilling and reskilling accessible and applicable for everyone.”

Dutch partner

Etil Research Corporation, a Dutch economic research firm specialised in data on the Dutch labour market, is joining forces with UQalify. Director and business manager Jeroen Meuwissen explains: “Our organisation aims to offer insight into improvement and deliver this insight from economic data to enhance the function of other organisations and regions. The insights we gain into economy and labour are incorporated into the solutions for the individual. We are active in various segments, including the labour market and education.” Etil has a passion for data and extracts valuable insights from it. It was the individual level that was lacking the right insights and solutions. “We know the labour market opportunities in terms of jobs and sectors, but we had no idea about the individual. Now we can use a person’s itsme to give advice and provide data. We help them understand where their best opportunities lie in terms of profession and sector. In the Netherlands, we use the UQalify tools to determine the opportunities and possibilities of individual employees.”

Technology as a means

For Thierry Lescrauwaet, technology is no more than a means. The end goal is for people to work and learn differently. For them to feel fulfilled by what they do and to see the future as an opportunity, instead of a threat. Therefore, UQalify builds platforms where content, diversity, inclusion, and the user experience are at the centre. In the same way as Etil also promotes work mobility throughout the Netherlands, and across the regions. They look at people’s rich profiles to guide them in their choices. These choices can be unexpected. The bookkeeper who edits videos in his spare time might foster completely different ambitions that he may be able to evolve towards and be rewarded with much more job satisfaction.”

Augmented intelligence

In the meantime, the unique profile is linked to various existing HR and learning platforms. Thierry Lescrauwaet: “It is important that companies realise their organisation’s potential is within the company. We help to identify this potential and to activate internal job mobility, among other things.” Frank Aernout talks about AI, but he is not referring to artificial intelligence. “AI stands for augmented intelligence. It is an instrument that offers HR employees more and faster insights, concisely and rationally, without any bias or human influence. This means the AI is ethical, not a black box that makes decisions as a mathematical machine would. It definitely does not replace the decisions made by HR. It presents HR with the talents of their teams and employees. It maps everything out differently, and can help HR to manage the departments. The insight is offered through dashboards, among others, that support the two core competencies of HR: employee training and internal mobility.”

Lifelong learning

UQalify wants to guide individuals and prepare them for the future. Not an easy task at a time when organisations often are aware that job content will change without being able to predict exactly what this new content will be. Frank Aernout: “HR should regard the colleagues differently, and prepare them on the basis of skills they might need within the next three years. To do this, those colleagues must know themselves above all, and know where they still need to hone their skills.” Thierry Lescrauwaet adds: “Our datasets and insights can help SMEs to identify and present the relevant future jobs and skills. This will allow their employees to have more faith in the preparatory process and realise that things aren’t that bad. Nobody really has the appetite for lifelong learning, but we do all want to develop further and grow every day - where, when and how we want. Eventually, this will also lead to a job that suits us and makes us feel fulfilled.”

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