Why HR Teams Should Learn No Code Tools: Interview with Ryan Chew, COO of Tribe

February 16, 20211:24 pm2431 views

Technology has infused all parts of our working lives, none more so that in HR departments. HR professionals need to leverage technology to make their lives easier and more efficient, as well as understand the tech if they are to source and hire the right people for the right jobs. One emerging field is ‘No Code’ platforms, essentially platforms that allow anyone – from entrepreneurs to company employees – to design and develop their own apps.

Ryan Chew, COO of Tribe, explains what No Code technology is, how it can be used by HR teams and employees alike. Read on…

Mr Chew, the future of the world of work will no longer be dominated by humans. Technology has also taken an important part to help future business development. What is your general view on how technology and humans should play their roles?

Technology is moving faster than ever before. From online shopping to car sharing and mobile payments, it has transformed the way we live, work and play. As the COVID-19 pandemic has shown, technology can play an important role in keeping society functional and safe during a crisis as well.

In particular, blockchain technology can be a disruptive force for good. It functions as an immutable ledger that records all modifications made to it, making transactions transparent, reducing risks and preventing fraud. However, what makes blockchain revolutionary is the applied uses of it to solve real-world problems. 

For example, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Singapore start-up Accredify, supported by Tribe, developed a digital health passport that helped people better manage and secure their medical records. This is a blockchain-powered application which allows users to store medical documents, including COVID-19 swab results, immunity proof and vaccination records, via a mobile app for easy access and verification for travel declaration.

There are many potential uses for HR too. Blockchain could potentially help authenticate candidate information and work history during the recruitment process. Grades, qualifications and degrees could be verified much more easily and quicker on the Blockchain, employment records would be harder to falsify. Additionally, there is the possibility of creating smart contracts between employer and employee that makes it easier to pay employees. A good example is OpenCerts, a GovTech Blockchain initiative that makes it easy to check and verify certificates.

What challenges and opportunities do you see that many businesses leaders are still not aware of?

With technology, there are no limitations. There are still many untapped opportunities that business leaders have yet to take advantage of.

For example, blockchain-driven technology could be used by companies to create smart contracts, while employees can be encouraged to use No Code platforms to take charge of their own change by creating web applications that solve their day-to-day problems with minimal involvement from the IT team.

For example, HR teams could use No Code tools to develop simple applications for timesheet tracking and expense claim submissions, which will not only help them become more efficient but also free up valuable time to focus on crisis management issues.

How important do you think is data literacy to today’s business? And how literate should business stakeholders be?

In a world increasingly powered by data, data literacy is essential. This ability to process, analyse and understand data is important for making informed decisions.

With advancements in technology, machines are able to collect and store vast amounts of data for companies. However, the real potential of data remains largely untapped as it remains difficult for employees to distinguish what is valuable information from what is not. Research by software company Qlik has shown that 80 percent of workers in the Asia-Pacific region are still experiencing a knowledge gap in terms of understanding data, despite the ever-growing pressure to use data in the workplace. This is a missed opportunity for businesses as they are unable to realise the tangible and measurable value from data.

On the other hand, the same study has also shown that employees recognise the value of data in their roles – 90 percent of respondents agreed that data enables them to do their job better. Thus, more can be done to support these workers to become more proficient in understanding and analysing data. This is why Tribe Academy focuses on developing specialised courses, such as Blockchain, data science, cybersecurity and machine learning, to help support the training and upskilling of employees.

In line with question no.3, one study mentioned that there still lacks confidence in people’s ability to utilise, read, analyse, and work with data. How could No Code Tools and platforms help in this matter?

No Code tools bridge the gap between the tech and business teams. They allow anyone from entrepreneurs to employees with a great idea to transform it to a reality in just a matter of hours. They do not require users to learn any form of programming language just to create a web application.

For example, start-up founders have used the No Code platform Bubble to create various applications, ranging from a privacy-focused accounting tool for freelancers to an artificial intelligence-powered shift scheduling application for doctors.

This democratises the process of app development, reducing the barrier of entry for people who were previously intimidated by the challenge of learning how to code. This is why Tribe Academy has recently launched a No Code App Development course, which will equip entrepreneurs and ‘intrapreneurs’ – individual employees with an idea to add value to organisations – with the skills needed to use the No Code platform, Bubble.

Then how can we instil a sense of employee engagement and development in the automation ecosystem?

Automation is not necessarily a bad thing. It takes away the dull and repetitive work and frees up employees’ time to make meaningful contributions, which they find much more rewarding. Companies could use this opportunity to redesign jobs, business processes and workflows so that their employees can work more effectively alongside machines. Workplaces could be reorganised to promote greater collaboration between teams, resulting in more agile ways of working.

Such a culture of innovation will give employees more autonomy and a sense of mastery and purpose over their contributions. This not only helps organisations remain competitive, reduces costs and creates value for customers, but also leads to happier, more creative and engaged workers.

Lastly, please give some tricks or tips to leaders and/or employees on how to maximise the use of automation and technology, such as No Code Tools, to grow their business.

No Code platforms are simple to use and designed for people who have a great idea for web applications but have no coding background.

Entrepreneurs may find it a useful tool to help them develop an initial product quickly. With a viable product ready, they can go to market much faster and at a lower cost. They could even present it to investors to raise funds and scale their idea.

Business leaders who are building a culture of innovation within their companies could use No Code platforms as a way of doing that. Employees could be encouraged to collaborate with the IT department to develop their own prototype applications that solve issues they face in their everyday work. This would not only improve business productivity in the long run but also gives employees a sense of accomplishment as they contribute something valuable to the company.

There is a myriad of No Code tools in the market which are easy to learn and master. Courses are available for people interested in learning how to use these platforms to build their own businesses, including Tribe Academy’s No Code App Development course. Ultimately, these courses take little time yet equip students with the ability to build their own App-based solutions, potentially solving numerous challenges along the way.

Read also: Trends in Travel and Hospitality Industries During & Post-Pandemic: Q&A with Andrew Chan, Founder and CEO of ACI HR Solutions

About Ryan Chew: 

Ryan Chew is a second-generation serial entrepreneur and COO of Tribe, a deep technology innovation, talent & education platform supported by the Singapore government. Prior to Tribe Accelerator, Ryan served as Managing Director (Asia Pacific) and member of the Board of Director of Verlocal, a Silicon Valley startup. In 12 months, he grew the company from inception to a team of 10, helping more than 100 SMEs and freelancers turn their passion into their profession.

Connect with Ryan on LinkedIn

Content rights: This exclusive interview content is produced by HR in ASIA. Any redistribution or reproduction of part or all of the contents in this interview is prohibited. You may not, except with our express written permission, distribute or commercially exploit the content.

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