Momentum Metropolitan: pivoting from product to people

Written by Topco Staff Writer



Congratulations on being a finalist at the Future of HR Awards in the Best Use of Technology category. Why is entering award ceremonies such as the Future of HR important for Metropolitan Momentum?

It is key to benchmark progress with an outside-in mindset. These awards foster aspirational energies and encourage internal teams to go beyond immediate needs, anticipating future requirements especially within the context of a new normal that requires deeper and wider digital enablement for hybrid scenarios embracing work from anywhere as a new normal.

Please unpack how your organisation has made the best use of technology?

Technology enablement plays out on a continuum of best fit considering budget and need. Our business has embraced the new despite very limited additional discretionary Technology spend allocated. This required looking at meeting needs beyond traditional sources and resources, embracing access to offshored resources in India and locally to augment internal thinking and execution. The HR Tech requirement expanded significantly during the 2020 pandemic year with new but essential forays into productivity and Occupational Health and Safety toolsets. Integrating these offerings into mainstream channel management has been essential in driving user adoption.

What were some of the biggest hurdles you faced in 2020 and how did you resolve them?

An analysis of AS-IS Tech capabilities and systems landscape against a new requirement for user-friendly, intuitive toolsets that integrate with ease and offer deeper decision-support insights, revealed a chasm that could not easily be met with new ERP toolsets. A best of breed or fit for purpose approach had to be crafted to balance needs fulfilment with financial capacity in the face of a new operating model that allowed for differentiation amongst business units.

What have been some of Momentum Metropolitan’s greatest highlights over the last 3 years?

Resetting the organisation for success through a change in operating model to create a federation of empowered business units have unleashed new energies which has set us up for growth. The 2020 lockdown temporarily restrained the significant gains achieved through this strategic shift. Our Metropolitan business achieved significant turnaround despite the pandemic constraints. Our B-BBEE status of Level 1 for the past two consecutive years has ensured business continuity within our SA Ecosystem. Consolidation of our African Businesses has created focused delivery whilst expanding the Aditya Birla JV in India.

What exciting plans do you have for 2021?

Our pivot from being a product-led central design to a significantly more consumer or end-user centric approach will require a design thinking approach which will no doubt create simplicity from complexity in practice. Our systems landscape will be deeply aligned to enabling a bought-in People Strategy, ensuring focused delivery. This will be supported by new technologies to drive automation through AI/ bots and channel curation for easier adoption of toolsets. Weaving collaboration tools in to the fabric of the people agenda will foster greater connectivity as we embrace a hybrid workforce requirement.  


Momentum Metropolitan Holdings Limited (Momentum Metropolitan) is a South African based financial services group listed on the Johannesburg and Namibian Stock Exchange.

Momentum Metropolitan was formed from the merger of Metropolitan and Momentum, sizeable insurance-based financial services companies in South Africa and listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange on 1 December 2010.



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