Micky Chopra Explains about Startup Hiring & What HR Needs to Know About it

startup hiring

Startup ecosystem- a legendry revolution in the history has certainly transformed the way markets are working today in the country. The evolution has caught the eye balls of thousands of investors who come up with a new story, from Flipkart to Dine Out, every now and then. Today, the land of startups holds more promises for job-seeking candidates and unquestionably it has worked on the root procedure to bring a mass pool of aspirants on board.

In similar discussions with Mr. Micky Chopra, the Director  & Co-Founder- Talent Acquisition, Taction Talent Pvt Ltd, Noida, we at CareerBuilder were delighted to have been acquainted with his words of wisdom, which we have presented right underneath.

 Excerpts of the discussion with Mr. Micky Chopra, Taction Talent Pvt Ltd   

startup hiring
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“Very recently, I attended an orientation program of a management institute and interacted with HR aspirants and enthusiasts. I must say most of them were geared up and had a very realistic mindset about the challenges that lie ahead in the corporate world. Though we talked about Technology, Engagement, Compensation practicalities, there was one enthusiast who stood up and asked a very interesting yet critical aspect of HR i.e. hiring:

If given a chance, should I take up the role of Hiring Executive for a start-up? How different is it from hiring for the brand itself?

He looked stressed rather confused and didn’t know what to say because he had two job offers, one from a growing brand  and the other, from a technology start-up.

 I patiently listened to him and enquired.

 “If a start-up does influence or inspire a brand (policies, marketing, branding etc), do you still categorize it as start-up?” and what comes next was plenty of Ohh’s and Ahaa’s.

 At the early stages of any start-up, due to lack of processes, policies, and practices there is always a challenge to structure things to be more productive, efficient and effectively manage business goals. Though in a Start-up, what stands out is the level of collaboration (that exists) between the various groups/departments.

 Hence for a startup, it becomes even more critical to hire the right people. Poor hiring decisions (in a startup) or delayed hiring can cost you a BOMB.

 Is there a way out? We can though argue and deliberate on many parameters, here is list of critical focus points to be considered:

 1. The Startup Mindset – as HR, delivering the right intent of the organization goals is a must. Every known brand starts as a startup and your organization is no exception. Hence it is utmost required that we understand the aspects of the organization that stands out and deliver the right pitch to the job aspirants.

 2. Create a Personalized/Brand Experience – every job aspirant could eventually turn up as the brand ambassador of your organization. Hence it is critical to create happy experience for him/her. As startup you cannot lose an opportunity to transform job aspirants into brand ambassadors.

 3. Don’t Hire the Best Fit, look for Right Fit – perhaps the biggest mistake we do in startup hiring is to hire (or look to hire) the best resource possible, while ignoring many parameters and eventually end up losing time, effort, money …  It is critical to understand the business need and look for every opportunity to transform the talent available to the best fit possible (while hiring at the first place).

4. Hire for Opportunity not Challenges – challenges and opportunities are opposite sides of the same coin. Though challenges cannot be ignored, it is critical for startup hiring managers, be intentful to discuss the opportunities available to the job aspirants in detail. There should be a focused approach towards hiring for long term benefits, while ignoring short term fixes.

5. Know Your Best Source – startup hiring is not only about hiring the right fit, but more importantly hiring at the right time. Hence it is required to know your business needs, competitors and prospect individuals. Identifying at the right time is utmost critical for startup hiring.

6. Customized Interview Process –what works well for one organization may not necessarily, work right for the other, and do not blindly copy the interview process of any organization to deliver the right results for you. Customized your interview process in a way that is effective for your business need to better ROI.

 micky-chopraAuthor Micky Chopra

Director  & Co-Founder- Talent Acquisition, Taction Talent Pvt Ltd, Noida

 Micky Chopra is a Strategic Thinker and Passionate People Leader having Experience in Organisation Strategic Planning, Practicing, Directing, Transforming various Human Capital Management Initiatives. He comes with Diversified Experience in People Relationship, Talent Acquisition, Leadership Development, Change Management, Organization Development, Engagement & Communication. Micky has been instrumental in developing Innovative HR Initiatives to streamline various HR Processes and capitalize on Organizational Growth opportunities.

 Hope you liked reading the HR blogger’s point of view on startup hiring. Please feel free to share your valuable thoughts with us.

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Technology & Recruiting In 2025 By Adhiraj Dey – ITC


Attracting the best talent is the ultimate motive for recruiting professionals. In discussion with Mr. Adhiraj, Vice President (HR), ITC, we at CareerBuilder were acquainted with some innovative thoughts on how technology and recruiting would take place in 2015.

Excerpts of the discussion with Mr. Adhiraj Dey, VP-HR, ITC

“As technology continues to develop, can we assume that businesses will still be using recruiters 10 years from now? There are grounds for doubt, but it seems on the contrary that recruiters will have a highly strategic role to play in attracting and motivating the best talents for the projects, management and operations of the organizations they serve. One thing is certain, however: the digital transformation that began in 1995 with the advent of the Internet compels us to rethink everything.

Organizations and employees will have to reinvent their everyday activities, adjust their values and perhaps even review their primary purpose. Recruiting agencies and headhunting firms will be no exception: they, too, will have to undergo a radical repositioning.

There are nine predictions about the future of recruiting that are based on significant trends and weak signals that suggest three main hypotheses:

  1. Collaboration is what builds the collective intelligence of organizations. Attracting the right resources will depend on how promising the employer appears in cultural, experiential and educational terms.
  2. New ways of working are making people more independent, and more highly specialized. The best talent will set its sights on development potential, rather than immediate satisfaction. Knowledge workers want to take personal control of their learning processes and their professional advancement.
  3. Smart recruitment will shift from “predictive” to “prescriptive” mode. Real-time science and technology will use artificial intelligence and contextual factors to make recommendations and provide custom interactive content.

Between the extremes of realism and imagination, below are the 9 fundamental trends for recruiting in 2025

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1. Recruiters will be the “organizational designers” of high-performance teams and assignments.

Freed of the repetitive administrative tasks involved in finding candidates, posting announcements and sorting through CVs, recruiters will be able to focus on simplifying procedures and improving the content and the meaning they give to their work. They will have increased decision-making power, and will have a strategic role to play in making assignments stimulating and meaningful for employees. Their sole purpose will be to offer custom challenges to workers. The make-up of high-performance work teams will also be among their responsibilities. Advanced matching indicators will enable them to assemble the appropriate personalities, experience profiles and learning potential.

2. Recruiters will be salespeople for “rich learning” and “career discovery” programs.

Recruiters will develop and supply accelerated knowledge acquisition and personal development programs. These personalized and adaptive programs will use MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), COOCs (Corporate Open Online Courses), online gaming and microlearning content. “Rich learning” will complement marketing efforts and will constitute a necessary component of custom-tailored assignment proposals. Recruiters will have to respond to the growing demand for new skills, and speed in acquiring those skills will be crucial in a fast-changing world. The speed of technological, social and economic change will demand a reactive capacity in terms of the upgrading and renewal of talents throughout the workforce. Programs will incorporate cooperative group teaching resources, both internal and external. HR specialists will demonstrate flexibility in negotiating thoughtfully designed packages to attract candidates.

3. Recruiters will define the organization as a social and cooperative “hub” with a distinctive identity.

In an age of globalization and standardization driven by universal integrated software (Ios or Android), what encourages identification and generates loyalty is organizational culture. Made up of highly intangible and people-oriented markers, it is what distinguishes one workplace from another within the same industry, or among firms of similar size. Employees will look for balance in seeking a job close to home with values that are clearly expressed. They will also develop cultural referencing through the interpretation of social and cultural factors.

4. Employees will recruit themselves.

Rather than applicants, Employees will be considered “invited guests.” They will be briefed on targeted, location-specific suggestions, career options and development opportunities by means of wearable devices. They will have been shortlisted for the assignment on offer. The goal is to reduce unwanted invitations, delays and the complexity of recruitment procedures and focus on integration, the assignment and accelerated development. A Employees who accepts a proposal will learn first about the nature of the assignment, and then about the organization itself.

They will develop accurate profiles of knowledge workers and consumers. Combine this with a genetic profile that is virtually free of charge and we will be very close to recruitment as a biostatistical exercise. Yet another frontier to explore!

5. We will consult our “represented self” to improve our self-knowledge and our recognizability.

The death of the CV as we know it is only a matter of time! The “quantified self” will move from the quantitative phase to semantic mapping. Each point in the network – a connected worker – will be identified by labels, representations, data links and hubs, skill sets and relationships. Our personal descriptive data stored in the cloud, updated in real time, drawn from many sources and accessible through many devices, will recall the “e-portfolio” concept of the early 2000s! Educational content will be offered in progressive ways to correct any weaknesses in the “represented self.” This “synthetic me” will also be able to gain more independence.

6. “Deep recruitment” will become essential.

Recruiting in 2025 will be the outcome of several eras. The most advanced stage will be what is known as “deep recruitment.” Recruiters will use data mix and machine learning services. They will use artificial intelligence, HR big data, neurosciences and digital measurement of our sensors and related behaviours. The data and algorithms produced by these tools will help us personalize our communications, automate processes and generate hiring and talent development recommendations Recruiters will purchase data, performance analyses and online content to obtain a quantified semantic visualization of the strengths and talents within the work team, the department or the firm.

7. Recruiters will specialize in engagement and social inclusiveness.

Recruiters’ tools will include personalization, close attention to candidates, genuine conversation, culture mix, the social contract and free engagement. Hiring people with atypical profiles, talents from varied sources and older workers requires skill in managing diversity and cultural factors. Investing in workers’ potential, recruiters will have to practise the subtle art of developing contacts, building trust and reaching agreement.

A word of caution, however:  promises will have to be kept. Their role will include making sure that initial coaching and development contracts provide an optimum experience. Some organizations could usefully apply their ability to identify learning potential and versatility and benefit from their development programs in order to provide opportunities for candidates with less recent labour market experience.

8. Recruiters will be engaged in re-recruitment and longitudinal recruitment.

Re-recruitment will be based on a comprehensive policy of employee development referred to as “leave, learn and come back.” Learning can be more successful outside the company. Remember that over 80% of the workforce will be drawn from generations X and Y. Recruiters will have to be constantly aware of the occupational future of their contacts, and very well briefed on their career paths and needs.

To achieve early targeting of candidates and stimulate their interest, recruiters will use very finely focused contextual relationship marketing. “Re-targeting” involves a candidate who has been approached once and subsequently receives regular signals from a firm that is tracking his or her development in the medium term. The digital connection between candidate and interfaces can provide suggestions and assignments geared to the candidate’s decision-making cycle, as is now done for consumers. By anticipating a candidate’s intention to change jobs, it will be possible to attract him or her at the right time.

9. Measurement will acquire a whole new dimension.

Recruitment departments that have developed into aggregators of external and internal data will become brokers for HR, economic and social data to be used both by the firm and by the talents that seek to measure their success and progress. We already have devices that can measure the performance and well-being of employees and work teams in real time. These will be complemented by performance measures of the recruitment of individuals and the recruitment of synergistic teams that focus as much on candidate and team satisfaction as on operational impact. Candidate evaluations will have to be immersive and interactive in order to generate appeal and clarify development requirements. Evaluation of skill requirements will also be a key measure in anticipating needs and designing and planning development programs.

In the final analysis, measurement of the candidate experience in terms of simplicity, speed and sociability, the return on engagement (ROE), the return on development (ROD) and cyclical factors will be crucial in gauging the reaction speed and overall performance of a recruitment department operating under pressure. These indicators will undoubtedly be made public in order to demonstrate that the 8 previous points are present and correct.

The new fundamentals of recruitment for the future

Naturally, all these predictions will come up against resistance to change, organizational inertia as a brake on innovation, and social, ethical, technical and moral issues. We may nevertheless be surprised by how quickly the public adopts these new ideas.

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Three things are immediately obvious:

  1. In HR as in other disciplines, the more technology becomes integrated, the cheaper and simpler it becomes and the less it differentiates between individuals. Thank goodness for digital convergence! Power will therefore lie not in connections, media or network access, but rather in the ability to acquire and exploit knowledge derived from data.
  2. The more information is collated by netware, the more transparency and intelligibility will provide free choice for economic agents, candidates and recruiters.
  3. The more science tells us about ourselves, the more in tune we will be with our physiological, social and emotional drivers.

The best is yet to come!

In 30 years, we have moved from the early days of personal computing to mobile Internet devices and the social and cooperative web. We are just beginning to discover the potential of wearable devices and big data. The year 2025 will see a transition to the semantic web, quantum computing, robots and organic artificial intelligence.

In 2025 we will see fluid interfaces that learn from our personal biology and how we move and express ourselves; myriad means of communication that work with our “personal operating system”; ubiquitous interactive environments that provide contextualized information before we even know we need it; software that adapts independently to incorporate a missing functionality; personal robots to provide us with assistance and – perhaps – love; and bionic men with augmented cognition for extreme performance. The HR craft will have been transformed, reinvented and expanded.

Don’t believe it can happen? The acronym “BRING” (for biology, robotics, informatics, nanotechnology and genetics) nevertheless accounts for a large proportion of the extensive research program at the MIT Media Lab. All these technologies are already in the experimental stage as start-ups in 2014. Technology suggests possibilities to people, and they tend to choose what they like. Only the 2025 economy will show us which of these predictions really holds up.

Let’s hope the creative thoughts presented by Adhiraj are panned out well in 2025.

Adhiraj Dey

Author Bio

Adhiraj Dey, Vice President – Human Resources, ITC

A professional with around 20 years of experience in motivating & handling human resources development functions encompassing like Manpower Planning, Recruitment, Performance Management, Development Programs, Performance Appraisal, Training & Development, Policies & Procedures extensive experience. 

Follow the Latest Updates on Talent Acquisition & HR Tech on CareerBuilder India G+ and Instagram

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“Build Your Own Job Satisfaction”, Shares Madhav Vamsi, Campus Head (HR) @ Flipkart


In discussion with CareerBuilder, Mr. Madhav Vamsi, Campus Head at Flipkart, shared some virtuous knowledge with us about ‘How to Build Job Satisfaction & a glance at some amazing strategies that can help job candidates build their careers with their heels and head high.”

Excerpts of the discussion with Mr. Madhav Vamsi, Campus Head (HR) – Flipkart.com, Bengaluru

“Are you your JOE (Job Optimizing Engine)?”

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Data says – “Whether you love your job or not, you’ve probably given at least some thought to your next career move.” And yes, we make the same mistake(s) like ever while searching for a job. With so much research, content, wisdom and knowledge available around us, the expectation is to optimize time & search for the next big opportunity. However, most often these are those simple, small, minor avoidable mistakes standing between you & your career.

A job means different things to different people. For a few, it might be a means to pay bills while they pursue their interests through other means and the list goes on. I’m not the type of person who says that your professional life needs to look a certain way.

However, if a job means the following for you, then move ahead with this article.

What is a Job?

  • It is part of your life & not life itself (My apologies to all the workaholics who thought otherwise) – Work is about a search for daily meaning as well as daily bread – very basic
  • It is a means for creating & building a meaningful life – very basic
  • Therefore, my attitude, behavior, values, education, job 1 + job 2 defines my career & life both – basic but we strongly do not introspect (What comes first- growth or job?)
  • The means by which we trade our skills, talents, and passions and bring value to someone else & ourselves as a means to earn money.

Believe me when I say that you have control over your job satisfaction.

What if I told you that your job satisfaction is totally dependent on you (refer to point 3) & that every job or career opportunity you have from now until the day you retire can be fulfilling and rewarding financially as well as emotionally? It is totally possible with the right set of attitudes & behavior – do not worry much around skill! – Introspect (Are you healthy – Your productivity – Your ambition – Who are you/your self-awareness)

Read out the checklist of things which might help you better your future job searches.

Crisp Resume- I am not a big believer of resume, but I am part of a democracy & the 1st step for any job search continues to be a resume.

Make it concise – (Make it into 1-2 pages only – analytic’s say an employer spends 30 secs typically per resume)

Avoid templates- (Ctrl C + Ctrl V)

Be Honest- (Super important- include only those things which you could back with data – refer to point 3↑)

Emphasize accomplishments- (Key Achievements/Personal Traits/Awards & Recognition/Your Favorite book or Your Hobbies)

We are all creative– However, avoid too much design, over index or use creativity on content (say action verbs) & less on design

Don’t lie on your resume – (refer to point 3 ↑ values)

Focus on what makes you special

Update your LinkedIn profile – social profiling is the new hiring trend and employers want to know you beyond your resume – invest into a digital presence, we are in the world of populated digital natives. Don’t forget, LinkedIn is a very powerful tool – it’s more than an online resume

Proof read your profile- (resume/LinkedIn profile) – get few of your colleagues to read your profile too

A job never comes to us- Knock the door – be proactive – make your list of 10-20 employers you would want to work with.

Broad base your Sources– Whether you recently lost a job or are ready to jump ship from your current one, the chances of you getting a new position through the job postings ads is next to nil.

Invest into networking (KEY)- No limits here- your friends, parents, ex-colleagues, teachers, it’s a fair game to enter for your next job pursuit. Hence it is important you value people around you, respect them & you earn a lot back – do not connect back to them just when you are in need – consistently stay in touch with your network.

Become a Social Net-worker- The world is Digital now – setup your social accounts, it’s a great learning platform, while you learn you have an opportunity to share your thoughts as well.

Get out there– Ask your network how they got their current jobs, or at least those of your network whom you consider are into great jobs/jobs you would love to be part of.

Ask yourself a very basic question– “Did I learn anything new in the past 6-12 months?” – maybe a new skill, a new art, a new something totally unrelated to your job function but which has an impact in the way you think – if the answer is no, then it’s not a good news at all – you don’t want to be that ‘difficult-to-train’ new hire for your next employer.

 You are a Brand: Determine your unique value proposition (Heavy line, but never mind. Ponder on it) What makes you different from your peers; Figure out your value + strengths + your skills + your attitude – your passion. Both your offline & online brand is important. Guys attitude plays a big role, there are a certain set of characteristics that almost all hiring managers find appealing. “Respectfulness” is the most important, for me it earns 5 Star rating, remember in that sprint attitude wins over skills all the time.

Sum Total of U– It’s a great idea to share your psychometric profile with your employer (self-image/work image/stress image) – ever tried subjecting yourself to assessments/tests which throws your profile? (Data & Science is a far more convincing testimonial – remember that).

 Prepare for your interviews – Hiring techniques have changed – while a few employers still conduct biographical or traditional interviews, a lot of firms rely on the importance of structured & competency based interviews measuring behaviors too. Do a few mocks, get someone to ask you questions/ invest into mock interviews- it builds your confidence. Try this question, why did you join your (X) job & what are the reasons to quit that (X) job.

Always Follow-Up– It would be wonderful if every HR rep followed-up in a timely manner. But the reality is, they don’t. It isn’t always their fault. The best you can do is persistently follow-up to find out where they are in the process and if they need any more information from you.

Perception– It is a killer (and a bottleneck). Our ability to follow- up shows our organizational skills, integrity, and most of all -our interest. Do not shy on following up- stop assuming that you would end up looking greedy or too much in need of a job – remember those self-defeating thoughts come from your lack of confidence/ insecurity. (Eliminate guessing)

Finally, be Politely & Patiently Persistent

To sum up, just want to share a line I read in the Accelepoint Webzine-

“Even individuals need to develop a brand for themselves… Whatever your area of expertise, you can take steps to make people think of YOU when they think of your field!

The tips shared by the Bengaluru recruiter at Flipkart can go a long way in shaping out job-seekers, as well as, employees seeking out opportunities in their diverse fields.

Madhav Vamsi HR Head FlipkartAbout the Author

Madhav Vamsi M, is Campus Head (HR) at Flipkart.com. The talent leader manages all entry level recruitments and takes strong interest in people analytics. Madhav frequently travels to campuses to lead presentations, networking events and conduct awesome coffee chats. The HR blogger has made headlines with HT media & Career 360. Known for his knowledge bank by his ex-colleagues, Madhav keeps outstanding sharing knowledge pieces on his social media platforms.

*Read the original blog at bit.ly/2bLI4Ir

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Guest Post: Learning Quantum Leadership in HR- Talk with Adhiraj Dey – ITC

Quantum Leadership

We have been talking and hearing about leadership in an organization for quite some time now. In discussion with CareerBuilder, Mr. Adhiraj Dey, enlightened us about Quantum Leadership and how it impacts the organizational culture.

Excerpts of the discussion with Mr. Adhiraj Dey, VP (HR), ITC.

What exactly is Quantum Leadership?  

In simple words, Quantum leadership is the process of leading from the future. Since the outside forces, are not in control of any organisation & are unforeseen and complicated, management needs to realign their internal culture as well as operational strategies to address the same. Corporate and public leadership face the need for a quantum leap in their thinking about the structure and leadership of the organization. As times change, they now face the greatest technological upheaval and the greatest need for creative restructuring since the Industrial Revolution. Without clearly recognizing it, corporate and public leaders are challenged by external forces to build a radically new leadership culture from the ground up.

Quantum Leadership
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This new culture must define a new leadership paradigm that can deal creatively with rapid change, uncertainty, global interconnectivity, de-centralization, and greater demands for ethics and meaning from both employees and customers. Therefore, this not only requires new thinking but also new metaphors, new assumptions and new values. There is no better model for such a paradigm shift than the revolution in scientific thinking that gave us quantum physics, chaos, and complexity science.

Quantum leadership is leadership informed by quantum thinking and guided by the defining principles of quantum physics. Quantum leaders think ahead by formulating many scenarios for what the future might hold, encourage questions and experiments, and thrive on uncertainty.  Quantum leaders have used the defining principles of spiritual intelligence to nurture a higher, quantum intelligence.

The Journey towards a Quantum Organization means moving away from a Newtonian Organization paradigm towards a current model that captures both personal and professional experiences and possibilities, which are dynamic and may be changing constantly, morphing and evolving with inertia to create movement in an environment that may be chaotic. (Cycle of Balance and Flow)
“Newtonian Organizations no longer work (if they ever did) and that leaders can invigorate their businesses and institutions by incorporating the insights of quantum physics.”

The reason we want to move away from the Newtonian Organization is they embrace and require certainty and predictability. They are typically hierarchical in structure, with perceived power emanating from the top, and authority & control exercised at every level. They tend to be heavily bureaucratic and rule-bound, but most importantly they are necessarily inflexible and are managed as though the individual parts (groups/teams) organize the whole (enterprise).

Now that we understand a potential starting point for the journey towards a Quantum organization we find ourselves asking the following questions?

  • How fast or slow do we need to move?
  • Who travels with you?
  • What are the obstacles along the way?
  • Is there a wrong path?
  • How do you know when you are there?


The Quantum Organization itself relies upon the emergence of unique solutions, ideas, and insights through the self-sharing of all members aligning their individual skills sets, talents, insights, personal experiences, and individual identities with the values and goals of the enterprise. To embrace the model, it requires a sense and explanation into what the major interconnected features of the Motion of Fluidicity diagram means.

Adhiraj Dey

Author Bio

Adhiraj Dey, Vice President – Human Resources, ITC

A professional with around 20 years of experience in motivating & handling human resources development functions encompassing like Manpower Planning, Recruitment, Performance Management, Development Programs, Performance Appraisal, Training & Development, Policies & Procedures extensive experience. 

Follow the Latest Updates on Talent Acquisition & HR Tech on CareerBuilder India G+ and Instagram

( 198 visits )

Future of Human Resource- In the Words of Adhiraj Dey

Image Credit: Techsquare
Image Credit: Techsquare

In conversation with Mr. Adhiraj Dey,  we discussed about the future of human resource. In his utmost simple words, the HR professional enlightened CareerBuilder India about his perspective on ‘what lies in future for the recruitment industry’.  

In the talks with Adhiraj Dey – VP (HR), ITC 

Q. What skills are necessary for the successful HR professional today?

A. There are five critical skill categories:

  1. Business skills–HR professionals must understand the dynamics of business and possess the financial acumen to assess and communicate how HR strategies impact the bottom line. Project and process management skills also fall within this broad category.
  2. Leadership skills–HR professionals must have the ability to create a vision and strategy to ensure the alignment of the organization with  its strategy and the ability to manage and motivate a team.
  3. Consulting skills–Truly effective HR professionals must develop their consulting skills, with a focus on the ability to market their work within the organization. Cultivating an executive presence through progressive experience working with senior business leaders is also important.
  4. Technology skills–HR professionals must develop a proficiency in broad HR applications and their potential delivery systems. They must be able to apply this knowledge to the business-planning process.
  5. Global mindset–Business is increasingly global, requiring HR to understand the dynamics of the global marketplace. HR leaders should cultivate a staff that is multi-lingual and has direct experience working in other cultures.

Q. How to build the skill set?

A. Underneath are certain ways through which HR professionals can develop those skill sets:

Capabilities – Companies looking for strategic HR talents are now beginning to compete for consulting talent. They are looking for people who can see across many areas.  These broad consulting competencies include:

skills required by an HR

Increasingly, a  track record of business success, based on developing creative and innovative human capital solutions, forms the most powerful resume.  Why?  Today’s business requires HR solutions that are without precedent.  In this environment, a desirable skill set includes:

  • Broad problem-solving ability
  • Systems thinking
  • Solid business background
  • Technology understanding
  • Comfort with ambiguity.

These skills, coupled with an ability to recognize the high leverage points for HR, predicate success for HR professionals. Business acumen and the ability to translate business strategy into effective HR strategy are the skills most desired by business leaders of their HR partners.

This direct experience validates focus group outcomes identifying the following capabilities:

HR Leader Skillsets

HR professionals must be able to present the business case for HR.  A  business orientation and an understanding is required by the HR professional to be conversant in finance, sales, marketing, manufacturing, etc., and know how HR fits into the business’ strategic goals.  All lines of business must be able to express their value through effective measurements—HR is no exception.  So, knowing how to develop practical metrics to measure results and support HR initiatives is critical.  Additionally, as HR evolves to more of an “internal service business,” the development of consultative/customer service skills is important. Currently, there are few HR professionals who combine both business depth and functional expertise.

As shown below, HR professionals need to understand these interdependencies, including corporate governance, and their role in each aspect of the business.

Gap in Skills - HR

Today, the skills that in-house HR professionals need are generally compliance related.  HR keeps the organization in compliance with the many laws and regulations associated with the workforce.  HR also needs technical competence in specific disciplines like compensation, benefits or training.  These skills have not changed a great deal over the years.  The inherent problem is that it’s possible to be successful in HR with these skills; yet still have no real understanding of business or the ability to contribute on a strategic level.

Q. Within the next decade, what are the primary workplace issues and challenges facing the HR profession?

A. Let me be very specific on this issue:

  • Attraction and retention of talent (including leadership development)
  • Organizational Design / Psychology
  • Neuro Sciences
  • Innovation – Research & Development
  • Culture Change, Build and Sustainability
  • Learning & Development – Human Capital Mobilisation
  • Workforce planning and skills assessment
  • Utilization of technology
  • Globalization process
  • Customer satisfaction and its relationship to employee satisfaction
  • Strategic alignment and operational efficiency in the operation of HR, measurement. Underscoring these challenges is a key objective for HR to express its value added in terms of economic consequences to a business.
  • Leadership development
  • Delivery of training
  • Organizational development capacity
  • Change management skills

Q. What do you think are the workplace challenges in the next decade? 

A. Changes in the workforce—There is clear evidence that the demand for skilled workers exceeds the supply of qualified people. Today’s workers are smarter, more demanding and less loyal than their preceding generation.  In this environment, employees can and will challenge their employers—with significant leverage.

Increased litigation–The aging population will present new legal issues for HR. Legal experts predict that litigation around “wrongful termination” of older workers while balancing succession planning of younger workers will begin to outstrip all other legal issues associated with employees.

Pipeline of new workers–The aging population presents pipeline issues at the other end of the spectrum. Where will the skilled workers come from to replace Baby Boomers, in case of us ?

Worklife-balance–Even in companies recognized as leaders in promoting Worklife-balance, there is an increasing skepticism whether balance exists for employees. The same technological innovations designed to increase efficiency also enable work to pervade all aspects of an employee’s life.  Are corporate programs aimed at promoting work-life balance just public relations?  Will “Generations X and Y” demand something more and different?

Q. Will the way in which HR work is accomplished change significantly in the next decade?

A. The most significant change will be the impact of technology on HR services and employee self-service.  There is a trend right now for companies to push the extreme in terms of technology and in sourcing.  Over the next decade, companies will find the right balance between technology and people.  Increasingly, HR work will move into the line, with managers handling the majority of HR-related issues.

Q. What are the opportunities for forward-thinking professionals over the next few years?

A. One of the key opportunities for forward thinking HR leaders is to develop the capability within their functions to meet the challenges presented by business in the future. Some companies are adopting a “migration strategy” to build capability within HR. This strategy typically requires

  1. Having a clearly articulated strategy/business design for the HR function.
  2. Identifying the operational infrastructure requirements; and
  3. Ensuring that staff has the skills, knowledge and competencies to flawlessly execute their re-defined roles. In some cases, this may mean recruiting and hiring for business, consulting or systems skills and then providing training in the technical HR disciplines.

The most powerful opportunity for HR professionals is to develop the strategies that can build a company’s brand through its people.  When you think about it, there is nothing that can’t be copied—whether technology, product or strategy.  The only thing that can differentiate Company A from Company B is a common set of values delivered through people.  People will become the critical differentiator.

Q. Will the HR profession survive in the next decade? If not, how will it be replaced?

A. HR will certainly survive in the next decade but will continue to transform.  However, taking a look at HR as it was 10 years ago, there is a vast difference today—and the same will be true again in next 10 years. Future HR will be more powerful and impactful. There will be a greater reliance on technology, delivered through internal and external sources. Finally, the line will continue to blur between HR and line management, as HR becomes more integrated into the managerial role.

Needs of talent in 2020 and Onwards

Q. What will be the most important needs of talented employees a decade from now?

A. While the above will continue to be important, another set of needs may become much more important. Prominent among these are

  1. Autonomy & Freedom – A peek into the future is visible in organizations like Marriott and Google today. Both are magnets for young employees. Both have an extremely high degree of freedom and empowerment. And both have open and transparent communication processes to share information required by employees to exercise their freedom.
  2. Higher flexibility and work- life balance – Employees are increasingly going to differentiate between selling their skills and selling their life. Contracts will be based on deliverables and not on time spent. Developed economies like us have more than 22 percent of their workforce in the form of “free agents”- people who are not on the rolls of a company. Even traditional forms of employment will change. IBM, for example, has more than 50 work-life balance programs and a significant section of employees who work from home.
  3. Customized career paths – Infosys has recently devised 24 career streams, most Organizations have 1 or 2! Why stop at 24? How about one for each employee? Seems impossible in a paradigm where structure follows strategy and people follow structure and roles. Yet in reality, the growth of each person is unique; why should his career growth not be unique?
  4. TransparencyExampleMindtree has a rule called 95:95:95. In 2020 this rule will become 99:100:100 i.e. 99 percent of the information will be available to 100 percent of the people, 100 percent of the time.
  5. Opportunity to make a difference globally – For many people, work will move from being a source of living to providing meaning to life. The social impact of business will transcend national boundaries. Social networking using technology will override man-made boundaries.

Adhiraj Dey

Author Bio

Adhiraj Dey, Vice President – Human Resources, ITC

A professional with around 20 years of experience in motivating & handling human resources development functions encompassing like Manpower Planning, Recruitment, Performance Management, Development Programs, Performance Appraisal, Training & Development, Policies & Procedures extensive experience. 


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Humanity at the Workplace

Humanity at the workplace

In general world, almost half of the time, technology and humanity are considered to be contrary. Though, we cannot deny the importance of technology in our life, but it has deteriorated the soul of what we consider as ‘natural’. On the other hand, in the HR periphery, technology has changed the entire scenario where technology not only enhances the HR process, but never becomes any roadblock to humanity at work place as well. We cannot avoid the parallel roles of technology and humanity at any of the workplaces. They both are two sides of the same coin.

Humanity at the Workplace
Humanity at the Workplace

Image Source: huffingtonpost

TechHR16 conference, organized in The Leela Ambience Gurgaon Hotel, created a fair balance between technology and humanity through the discussion on the theme of ‘humanity at the workplace’. China Gorman, Director at Motivis Learning discussed it wisely during the TechHr16 conference.

China Gorman prioritized the importance of humanity at workplace by saying – a culture at workplace based on humanity is directly proportional to company’s success. “Leaders who encourage humanity in their organizations trigger high employee performance leading to competitive advantage in the market. Employees who say that their companies are a great place to work outperform five times more than their competitors,” says China Gorman from Motivis Learning.

She further strengthened her opinion by putting some examples of companies like Microsoft, TD Bank, Jet Blue and Reebok are using the term ‘humanity’ for branding so that they can establish better connection with people. “When advertising picks up a theme in the economy you know it is a real issue.  The focus on humanity rather than engagement is more important. Companies like Microsoft are using brand tags like – ‘More human way to go’, TD Bank in Canada is promoting on twitter with #bankhuman, Jet Blue airlines uses ‘Air on the side of humanity’ and Reebok- how ‘being more human’ helps you,”claims China.

Shift from Engagement to Humanity

There is great need for a shift from engagement to humanity. Earlier, the focus was on strategy and competition, but today the dynamics have changed. Today, it is all about “how you treat people.” A company cannot be future-fit if the employees are not taken care of. Data show that business results are remarkable in organizations where they create environment and a culture that takes care of the happiness of employees.

China Gorman further explains, “My hypothesis is that engagement is the outcome of many things and not just one thing. Leaders, academicians and HR leaders focus on the wrong thing. I think it is not engagement. It is when you have a culture, where leaders are trusted and employees feel supported – they get meaning and purpose from what they do and the organization recognizes that the workforce is made up of individual human beings and not specific skill sets and need care and attention. If employers today relate to wholeness of human beings and not just skill sets, then we will be living in different world all together.”

Employees are Assets

Company’s assets are generally divided into – tangibles and intangibles. Tangible assets are the ones you can touch: buildings, inventory, equipment, and financial resources. Intangible assets are the ones without a physical manifestation and they include intellectual property such as patents, trademarks and copyrights and human capital. “The bigger part of the intangible assets of the company is the people. I feel it is the people that really drive value of intangible assets in your company’s valuation. You need to think – how talent valuation, talent mobility, and a culture of talent development will make a difference in your organization,” explains China Gorman.

(This article is an excerpt from China Gorman’s speech  who discussed on the theme of humanity at the workplace during the TechHr16 conference)

#Featured Image source: peoplematters

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Talent Acquisition Has Undergone Transformation; What Lies Ahead? – Explains Kevin Freitas

Talent Acquisition

Industries around us are being disrupted. Old businesses are making way for the new. Whether it is AirBnB disrupting hotels worldwide or Paytm changing the way we transact with money today; there is disruption everywhere. The only way to sustain in this competitive environment is to transform and evolve. The primary lever of delivering outstanding transformation is talent. And as talent acquisition and HR professionals, it is imperative that we hire the talent that’s best suited to transform our business. Transformation is happening in our world too. The workforce is multi-generational and the way we cater to our audience has changed immeasurably.

In this article, I will share a glimpse of how talent acquisition is transforming and what lies ahead.

Image Source: Cielotalent

1. Employee Engagement

Employee lifecycle in an organization is getting shorter. According to a study by Gallup, job hopping is now fairly established as the new trend. In fact, millennials are the job-hopping generation. The study also shows that this job hopping phenomena is directly proportional to their engagement level in the organization. And today, millennials are the least engaged generation in any organization. The interesting part is money isn’t their top motivator to work nor is job security. They care more about recognition, job satisfaction, growth and learning opportunities.

To retain this job-hopping generation, it is important to have a clear, well-planned employee engagement strategy. We need to give up on the traditional methods like annual performance reviews and move towards a continuous feedback mechanism. Employees care about job satisfaction so it matters when we recognize them for their work, celebrate the successes and share failures with them. Sharing the larger picture, like company goals keeps them aligned to the organization’s culture. A healthy culture drives engagement and delight.

As HR professionals, we often segregate employee engagement from hiring. But, employee engagement is the future of smart talent acquisition. Not only does it help in improving retention but it also affects other aspects of recruitment like employer branding and hiring through employee referrals.

2. Gamification

We are hiring a generation that has played more video games than any other. Take for instance the latest sensation, Pokémon Go. It broke the internet within a week of its launch. The success of the game added $7.5 billion to Nintendo’s market value. Pokémon Go proves that gamification, when designed well, drives strong human behaviour. This strong user behaviour leads to measurable business outcomes.

To achieve business results, we need to leverage and apply elements of game playing (point scoring, competition, badges, etc.) to the processes of HR and recruitment. Use it to engage your employees. Blend it with different learning and development activities to increase participation. Encourage competition between employees and have them give their best shot at everything they do.

You can also use gamification to attract and engage candidates. Run coding competitions, hackathons, assessments for a particular role. It is not easy to assess each candidate and such processes eliminate junk while keeping top talent engaged. A gamified hiring process makes employers more attractive in the eyes of job seekers. Take in consideration the competitions organised on DoSelect’s Hackathon pages or Directi’s CodeChef. Their monthly competitions help companies get more exposure and acquire fresh talent.

Ultimately, gamification taps into the competitive fire that we all have. Use it to your advantage. Gamify, attract, hire, engage and retain top talent.

3. Employee Referrals

Employee referrals are one of our best channels to hire top talent. Employee referrals rely on word of mouth and word of mouth is powerful. It gives you the ability to distribute your jobs on social media. Leverage your employee’s networks for improving the distribution of your employer brand. Having employees advocate your brand and help you find and hire top talent makes our lives as talent acquisition professionals easier.

With the advent of smartphones, hiring and referral is increasingly moving to mobile and powered by viral and social media, so one should leverage solutions that understand and can help the talent acquisition team profit from this new normal.

Employee referral systems are fairly mainstream today and social to make the activity fun for your employees.

4. Technology

As talent acquisition professionals, we are expected to be effective multi-taskers. We are expected to be copywriters and write impressive job descriptions. We are told to adapt marketing skills to showcase our brand online. This is on top of being effective sales folks to engage a prospect and convert them to a hire. That is a lot of skills to pick up.

Technology can help ease your burden in several aspects of talent acquisition. It can create a visible talent brand online to help candidates find and apply for jobs. You can use technology to share open positions on different social networks and attract candidates. Given that the whole world is online today, social is your biggest crowdsourcing platform to attract candidates.

The key to converting top talent is a good candidate experience. Technology can keep your talent pool engaged by giving them a glimpse of your culture. It can help you share content that interests their role. In fact, technology can be used to reinforce consistent communication and showcase a personality online. This way you not only leave a good first impression but have the means to build lasting relationships.

To summarize, transformation in Talent Acquisition practices is inevitable. We have two options as professionals in front of us. Watch the transformation occur as bystanders and become redundant or be the change makers for our organizations, lead the way and drive this change.

Kevin Freitas

Know Your HR:

Kevin Freitas is the HR Leader for Asia at InMobi, where he heads HR for the Sales organization across countries like China, Korea, Japan, Australia and India. Kevin is a Chartered Accountant and a gold medalist in Managerial Ethics from XLRI Jamshedpur.  Follow Him on Twitter: @kevinsfreitas



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HR Robotics – Making HR Daily Occurrence Activities Simpler!

CareerBuilder_HR Robotics

TechHR16, a conference & exhibition on HR Technology, fairly justified the true purpose of organizing it through its one of the sessions – “HR Robotics Process Automation”. Anurag Malik and Milan Sheth from EY (Ernst & Young) created this session quite informative through their chat on the present and futuristic role of robots in human resources.

CareerBuilder_HR Robotics
CareerBuilder – HR Robotics

Image Source:diginomica

“Matching Data would be possible through cognitive automation where HR robotics would be matching data the way human eyes do.” – Milan

Difference between AI and RPA

They discussed on AI (Artificial Intelligence) and RPA (Robotic Process Automation); and how AI is ‘self-learning’ whereas RPA robots are ‘dumb’. Milan discussed how the evolution of RPA impacted the whole world through doing, thinking and analyzing HR activities. He said there are around 500 bots being used in HR periphery as of now.

Bots Making Frontend Robust

Milan stated that basically bot mimics human actions, for example, ticket checking, query handling etc. It does what is repetitive in nature. Backend technology has always been robust, comparatively frontend technology has not been robust. Bots would make frontend technology stronger than ever. Milan then went on to show a small video based on automation in recruitment process that illustrated how we use software for recruitment in present days. He further mentioned that HRA is a customer-facing function and robots are making it easier through performing customer-facing activity.

No Danger to HR Workforce

Milan cleared the doubts about the future of HR (workforce) by saying that robots would not be diminishing the role of HR, in fact, HR robotics would be maximizing the role of HR extensively in other crucial HR activities such as relationship management and resource management.

Anurag stated that the impact of robotics on HR is minimal, but after finance, it is the HR that has the maximum potential of robotic action. Bots have already started making its space in Performance Management, Workforce Management, HR Operations, Recruitment & Selection, Payroll and Training & Development. He further added that obviously it won’t be like Optimus Prime but it will be something of same sort.

Daily Occurrence Activity

Making his (Anurag) point stronger, he further discussed how bots are able to check mails, save the required CV, shortlist, schedule interview and multiple other activities. The basics of any robotics is to help imitate both mental and physical activities. When a “bot” has finished working on a CV, it could email it to a candidate with a note saying what further needs to be done and what follow up tasks are required. Bots, therefore become a part of the team.

Milan then adds that, “Power has shifted from IT to business.” The HR department has had a tremendous transactional evolution and RPA will play a significant role in organizational cost optimization and will also elevate the customer experience.

 (This article is an excerpt from Fire Chat on ‘HRobotic Process Automation’ at TechHR 2016)

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