This year marks the 15th anniversary of our partnership with Randstad. To commemorate this accomplishment, we went over to Randstad’s Headquarters to interview their senior compliance counsel, Dieuwke Visser.
Mrs. Visser has been at Randstad for 25 years and has thus been at the company for the entire duration of our partnership. In fact, she played a great part in implementing SpeakUp®, and is still very much in the thick of it. We talked about our partnership, People Intouch as a provider and Mrs. Visser’s view on compliance. During our conversation at Randstad some striking similarities between our companies became apparent, of which the biggest was that Randstad is about people, just like People Intouch. This, and other takeaways from our talk with Mrs. Visser, are outlined below.
How would you describe People Intouch?
Dieuwke Visser: First of all it is advantageous that they’re in The Netherlands, so lines are short. This also means that you meet at certain events much more easily. I would describe the relationship as being very personal, and they are easily accessible. I think Rolf [Rolf Thung, People Intouch’s founder] really set the tone and culture at People Intouch from the beginning. Over the years it seems that the company has been continuously improving and professionalising. Even though there have been changes and the company has grown substantially, lines are still short and the account manager always tries to stay aligned. They’re dedicated and very approachable. If we have a question there is always a quick and good response, and the contact is very personal. Furthermore, they are not afraid to tell you if something is not possible, which provides a lot of clarity. All in all, I cannot imagine getting the same kind of dedication from another party.
Putting people in first place is very much ingrained in both our companies’ approach and product/services. What is your opinion on this?
Dieuwke Visser: Yes, it’s easy to point at the rules, but it’s much better to look at how you can help and to look at what you can do for people. How can we make things better? How can we improve? Some organizations still tend to look at compliance from a ‘rules’ perspective, but it is much more about behaviour. If you have the right behaviour, the rules are basically almost irrelevant. For Randstad this is closely aligned to our core values. Also handling incidents is about putting people in first place. To be approachable, to be known, and to be trusted. People have to be willing to come to you or other colleagues. The support from management in this approach is essential. Compliance should not be stuck at the end of the corridor, it has to be supported and visible. The tone at the top should include compliance and the compliance officer. It shouldn’t be there because it has to be there, but because they want it to be there. It should be visible in a positive way.
Following that last question, we would like to ask you a question of conscience: would you yourself make a report via SpeakUp®?
Dieuwke Visser: I definitely would, but I would first address it via the regular reporting line, and I would expect it to be solved. But, yes, I would definitely. SpeakUp® is safe. If I am aware of something I can’t continue without mentioning it or bringing it up, but I can imagine that it can be really tough to leave a report and address your concerns. Yet I hope my colleagues feel comfortable to do so, directly, or by making use of SpeakUp®.