Running a global HR function (podcast)

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Chris Heron

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Simon Viggers has worked in most areas of HR and communications, in a career that spans more than 20 years. Simon has just left his position as Vice President of Human Resources, Communication and IT at Otsuka Pharmaceutical in Europe. Previously he headed up the HR function at Novo Nordisk Inc in Princeton, New Jersey. Simon has a strong profile within cultural and behavioural change, and like us is a strong believer in harnessing a culture where the voice of the employee is valued and actioned. We talk to Simon about the future of HR, what it’s like to manage a multinational HR team, and what he believes will be the future of work. 

We discuss Simon’s background, where he grew up, how and why he decided to get into HR. We also discuss the type of roles he has been involved in throughout his career. Simon also gives us his insights into what it’s like to run the HR function of a large global Pharma

We discuss how a big strategic shift like, outsourcing early stage drug discovery for a Pharma, can impact your people strategy.

Simon described his role as balancing people, performance, engagement and business, which I liked, so I asked him to explain what this actually mean’t.

Simon explains how the role of HR has changed over the last 20 years, and what impact COVID-19 will have on the HR function moving forward.

Finally we ask Simon to give his 20 year old self some advice, never easy!

It’s a fascinating interview with a highly successful global HRD, we hope you enjoy.




If you want to connect with Simon the best place is via Linkedin

If you enjoyed the show then please leave us a review on the podcast, or if you have any ideas or questions about today’s episode please reach me directly on

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