Head of People Experience CLE


Dublin, IE

Company:  Canada Life Group Services

Canada Life Assurance Europe plc (‘CLE’) has been operating in Germany since 2000. It supports over 530,000 individual customers, over 600,000 policies and 30,000 Corporate relationships, and is authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland and regulated by the German regulator Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin) for conduct of business rules.  
CLE has a fast-growing position in the unit-linked pension, savings, and protection market, distributing through independent brokers with a reputation for innovation. Its growth strategy sees an increasing focus on group pensions, customer, and adviser experience, developing new ecosystem propositions as well as exploring new routes to market. It employs over 800 people across its Irish and German offices and while still relatively young in its business lifecycle, is already a good contributor to Great West LifeCo European Division earnings.  
We have an ambitious growth plan, which is centered around our Purpose ‘to be here for life with our customers and business partners, helping them to build stronger, more inclusive, and financially secure futures’. This Purpose translates into our Mission ‘to innovate and win in advice and workplace solutions to become Germany’s fastest growing insurer’. With a stretching ambition, our culture and values are more important than ever requiring strength, collaboration, responsible leadership, a relentless pursuit of better – and all that coupled with unconventional creativity.   


Role Overview

Based in Dublin, we are seeking to hire a dynamic, experienced HR leader to join our international business to support the execution of strategic people and culture initiatives and enable our ambitious growth strategy. Reporting to the Chief People Officer, you will be an integral member of the People & Culture Leadership team and will partner with business leaders and the broader People & Culture Team across Germany and Ireland to deliver best in class people and culture solutions and initiatives.  
Commercially focussed, with deep HR knowledge and expertise, excellent stakeholder management and execution skills and a track record of successful delivery of substantial people and culture initiatives; this role will support the delivery of an enabling People and Ways of Working Strategy across the business. With experience in creating, leading and implementing organisational development, change and design, fostering a high-performance culture, great people experience and talent initiatives to maximise potential; this is an exciting role and business to be a part of.  

What you will help us to achieve


•    Support the CPO and People & Culture Leadership Team and Business Leaders to identify strategic people priorities, develop robust strategic, tactical execution plans and implement them to deliver value and success for our people, business and customers 
•    Enable and support the development and delivery of a People and Culture Strategy that enables effective organisational change and evolution, proactively supporting the change impact on the organisation 
•    Identify areas for process improvement, operational enhancements, and cost optimization, accompanied with solution proposals and carry through to implementation 

Business Partnering 
•    Provide HR Leadership, drive best practice and be a trusted advisor, providing vision and direction on People and Culture strategic direction across the business  
•    Foster a collaborative and productive working environment within the People & Culture team, with Business leaders and colleagues, as well as European and Group stakeholders promoting excellent and effective communication, teamwork, and collaboration 
•    Champion the advancement of organisational capability with a bias for balance (DEI); identifying, developing, and deepening diverse talent and succession pipelines – collaborating across CLE, the European businesses and Lifeco leveraging learning and development initiatives to enhance capabilities and growth 
•    Support the CPO with oversight of performance and reward strategies and practices – embedding a culture of high performance, building leadership capability to sustain and ensure reward practices are geared and aligned to drive performance and results and compete in the market 
•    Support the embedding and evolution of ways of working, including Hybrid, and the implementation of new tools and processes for people across CLE 
•    Be a Culture Champion for the organisation, ensuring that ways of working and underpinning governance and structure support CLE culture and values 
•    Own the preparation of various communications from the CPO, including Board updates etc. 
•    Support the CPO as a key contributor to the CLE annual planning and budgeting process and have oversight of significant people budgets 
•    Partner with the second line functions on regulatory and legislative issues impacting the People agenda, and be a leader in risk identification, management and reporting for HR 
•    Manage special projects and initiatives assigned by the CPO 
•    Collaborate with the CPO, and senior leaders ensuring people, process and resource optimisation and agility 

What you will need to be successful in the role

•    Extensive experience and a proven track record of supporting the development, leadership and implementation of People & Culture vision and strategy in large, matrix organisations, preferably across multiple geographies and jurisdictions 
•    Expert level of knowledge of HR practices; including but not limited, org development, design and change, workforce planning, talent management and employee experience and communications, employee relations and legislation. An understanding of German business and regulation impacting HR including German Workers Council are desirable 
•    Experience in managing employee relations including industrial relations
•    Self-starter with a results/action-orientation demonstrating pace and energy  
•    Excellent organisational, programme and project management and execution skills and ability 
•    Ability to create an environment that maximizes and leverages the diverse talents, backgrounds, and perspectives of employees 
•    Ability to partner, influence and relationship manage business leaders to connect business goals to people solutions to achieve successful employee, customer and commercial outcomes 
•    Excellent communication and storytelling skills – written and verbal. German language would be advantageous 
•    Strong analytical and problem-solving abilities, with a data-driven mindset and a hunger for knowledge 
•    Financially numerate with experience of managing budgets and adept at using Excel and Power BI tools   
•    Flexibility, resilience, and adaptability to work in a fast-paced, dynamic environment 
•    Stays abreast of industry trends, change and industry best practice to inform the strategic direction of the people roadmap and drive successful outcomes 
•    Excellent working knowledge of MS Office packages and including PowerPoint and Excel 
•    Masters, Degree or professional qualification in HR, Business Administration or an insurance-related field, or equivalent work or education-related experience. Master’s Degree is a plus

Key Competencies

Commercial Awareness
Develop High Performing Teams - Build a diverse winning team through role modeling authentic leadership and creating an inclusive environment where people can thrive.
Build Collaborative Relationships - Able to foster relationships which encourages diversity of thought, and facilitates cooperation that improves customer and business outcomes.
Drive Business Growth & Resilience - Focus on areas of growth, applying an enterprise mindset and considering the external environment to seize emerging opportunities and address challenges.
Deliver Performance and Value - Leads with operational excellence to most efficiently and effectively drive the delivery of results.
Lead The Way Forward - Inspire a vision, articulate meaningful expectations and clear pathways to desired outcomes. Quickly adapts to new realities even in the face of ambiguity and uncertainty.
Risk and Control
Stakeholder Focused - Considers key stakeholder needs, to make timely decisions that drive superior and sustainable business and financial results.


The company reserves the right to draw up a shortlist as part of the selection process.  Where Agency assistance is required the Canada Life Recruitment Team will engage directly with suppliers. Unsolicited CVs / profiles supplied to Canada Life by Recruitment Agencies will not be accepted for this role.


Canada Life Group Services is proud to be an Equal Opportunities employer. We have created an environment of inclusion and growth to help people achieve their potential, to ensure they can bring their whole selves to work and to feel valued.  We celebrate diversity of thought and perspective and want all of our employees to feel valued, respected and supported.  We have built a culture that promotes equality and inclusion for all of our current and future employees and strive to ensure that our behaviours, processes and practices are aligned to this culture.

If you require any accommodations during the recruitment process please contact karen.gallagher@irishlife.ie and we will be delighted to ensure you are fully supported to be your best.   

CLGS supports Equal Opportunity and is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland