With 15 years in the HR domain, my journey started with a belief that employees are the cornerstone of any organization. I am passionate about resolving employee grievances, attracting the right talent, and helping people find their right fit in terms of jobs.
Q2: Personality often shapes a professional's approach to their work. How would you say your personality traits complement your role as an HR professional?
As a person, I am deeply empathetic and derive joy from helping others. I focus on making people comfortable within their work environments and dealing effectively with conflicts. I tend to avoid unnecessary confrontation and strive to maintain a harmonious workplace. I believe this goes hand in hand with my HR role.
My career in tech hiring began with my first job at Capgemini in Mumbai. From there, I moved to Raqqirl, only to return to Capgemini later on. My experience across these roles involved managing end-to-end tech hiring, and overcoming various unique challenges. These experiences were incredible learning opportunities for me.
When I started out about 10-12 years ago, hiring channels were mostly limited to job portals like Naukri and Monster.com, and employee references. Today, social media platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter, as well as various online groups and communities, play a huge role in recruitment. While this has expanded our outreach, it's a double-edged sword. On one hand, we aren't solely dependent on job portals anymore, but on the other hand, companies must be extremely cautious about their brand image on these highly visible platforms.
A company's reputation is paramount. If a company has a history of frequent layoffs, it can seriously harm its image in the eyes of potential employees. Today's candidates don't just consider the salary package. They conduct their own background checks on potential employers, much like how we screen them. Websites like Glassdoor and Ambition Box have given potential employees powerful tools to vet their potential employers. So, a negative reputation can definitely deter top talent, even with the offer of a significant salary hike.
Candidates today are incredibly discerning. Just as we conduct multiple rounds of interviews to assess a candidate, they perform their own due diligence on the organization. A generous salary package isn't the sole deciding factor anymore. They look at the organization's history, its culture, stability, and growth opportunities. So, organizations need to be more transparent and work on building a positive brand image to attract and retain the best talent.
It can be a challenge when a job has already been filled but the information continues to circulate. This can lead to candidates reaching out to me through email or phone, and then I have to inform them that the position has already been filled. This issue can also impact HR professionals if they are looking for a job.
here are significant differences in the hiring processes between established tech firms and startups. Established organizations like Capgemini, Apple, or TCS already have strong branding, so we don't have to 'sell' the organization to potential hires. However, with startups, there are many more questions candidates ask before starting a conversation. They want to know about the organization's stage, the co-founders, job stability, and the company's mission and vision. Hence, we need to convince them at every stage.
Q9: How does the approach to hiring differ between project-based roles at larger firms and product-based roles at startups?
In a large IT consulting firm, you are usually hiring for projects, whereas, in startups, you are hiring for a product. Established companies can afford to take more risks with their hires. Even if a hire doesn't meet all the job criteria, they can afford to train them on the job. However, in a startup, there's less room for error. We need to hire individuals who meet about 85%-90% of the knowledge or skillset criteria.
Q10: How do the challenges of startup hiring differ from those at established IT consulting firms?
The challenges are significantly different. For a startup, every hire is crucial, so there's less margin for error. We also need to convince the candidates about the vision of the startup, the future of the product, and how it will create a difference in society. There are also practical considerations such as funding. It's a much more complex and detailed process compared to hiring at large consulting firms.
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