Sunday, March 28, 2010

Starting your HR Career

This is not a big post. Just a few points that I could recall from the "last discussion" that we had with one of our professors who is a leading HR practitioner. When my class asked him a few tips that we should remember as we enter the corporate world again, he was prompt to reply following:

1. Enjoy the work that your are doing. You have chosen this stream after much thought process and you should love the work that you do. You may not get the best of the work but work with the best of your abilities, prove your mettle to be given "good" work.

2. Never leave the job for money - Leave the job for any reason but for money. It is not considered to be a good strategic decision. 

3. Next 2-3 years : In the coming two three years, learn the basics of the field. Be an avid learner. Learn and absorb as much as you can. Question the theory and learn the nuances. While, you are doing this, slowly and gradually learn to master your competency in a particular area. If the organization does not provide you a chance, pull in your personal resources and learn an area of interest. 

I guess, these 2-3 pointers, can go a long way in guiding any professionals career. 

Thank you Sir.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Recruitment - a couple of points

Recruitment is a vertical in HR which I am really fond of. After going through several case studies, handling the intricacies of this vertical for a good period of time and also understanding how monotonous and pressurizing the job can get, I have realized that there are two points many have missed.

I remember, the head of the site once in a one to one discussion mentioned that it is very important that the candidates who come for interview go through the process in the least possible time and have a great experience in the entire process.

I realized that , till that discussion, we did not pay much attention on to the two. Our objective was always to get the maximum and best candidates for the interview with a belief that they need the job as much as we need a candidate to fill in the vacancy.However, the discussion forced me to think more on "adding value" at each step. We were situated in the remotest possible location and hence the candidate stayed in the place for close to 30-36 hours. The challenge was right from the time the candidates were shortlisted to the time they return back and the results were declared , we had to make their entire trip an experience. More important and challenging that it had to be done continuously, week after week, month after month, vacancy after vacancy. Complacency could easily creep in. And slowly we started addressing the challenge. Customized mails, talks on phone with candidates in the most friendly manner to ensure they know the journey, keep important things and most importantly - know me and my team well enough so that we don't have to "break ice" when we meet. We exchanged roles so that we didn't feel monotonous and each challenged the way the other does work so that none were complacent. Continuous discussions with customer departments to understand their needs and present our requirements helped us to bring the two departments closer. The seniors supported and soon we started building relations with our candidates and ensured that their visit to our premises was more than just an interview. It was an experience. 
And this brings us to the next important thing that I have not read anywhere so far(may be I need to read more). Cost!!! We talk of many direct and indirect costs associated with recruitment. However, to my understanding the biggest cost involved in the entire recruitment process is intangible and is the cost that can be called as " Brand loyalty cost." Yes, a bad experience can lead to huge negative publicity through word of mouth and these days through blogs, mailers, social networking sites etc. And this cost is beyond repair. One must ensure that the candidate leaves the premises with an experience that he would like to share with all that come in contact with him on his way back and for days to come.
Hence, an experience to remember and the cost associated with strengthened brand image are two most important aspects related to recruitment that one should always remember. 
The views are based on my experiences at work and should not be reproduced.