Thursday, February 28, 2008

Existence of Recruitment Team in your Organization & their role..

Existence of Recruitment Team in your Organization

What do you think is the actual role and responsibility of “Recruitment Team” in company? I my previous write-up titled “Roles for HR Professionals in New Economy, I have mentioned about various roles and responsibilities that a “Recruitment Team” can take-up. The key and main role of the Recruitment Team of any organization is “Sourcing” but even if they are not doing that and just working as a mediator between Various Departments and Recruitment Consultancy Firms/Agency … don’t you think they are not justifying their very existence in the system? Lets go in detail and find the solution.

Different resources available for sourcing
The following are the various resources available for corporate houses and organizations to get profiles for their requirements:

1) Advertisement

2) Employee References

3) Job Portals

4) Campus Hiring (including, hiring through different private institutes)

5) Recruitment Consultancies/Firms

6) Resumes‚posted on the website of the company

7) Direct Drop-ins

The last two are ill-managed resources. If managed properly‚these two resources can be very useful and effective. Among the above-mentioned sources “Recruitment Consultancies/firms” is the only source where you cannot, directly get in touch with the “prospective employees”.

I am not against “Recruitment Consultancies”‚I am in favour of them and I want to use them in a better manner. I want to use this resource for “Headhunting”. This gives rise to two more questions? What are different resources available with Consultancy Firms‚for sourcing and what is difference between Sourcing and Headhunting?

Different Resources available with “Recruitment Consultancy Firms” for sourcing Recruitment Consultancy Firms also use all the above-mentioned resources except “Campus Hiring” and “Employee Reference”. (Let me know if there is any other resource available to them). Then, why is it that you cannot tap the talent and they can? Probably, you are not aware of the market? Probably, you are not aware of the business?

What the “Recruitment Team” is actually doing?

First question, if the recruitment team of your company is the final authority to “Select” or “Reject” a candidate? In most of the cases‚your answer will be NOPE, they are not the final authority. That right has been vested on “The Departmental or The Functional Head”. If those Department and Functional heads selects anyone on their own‚without informing you‚you cannot do anything.

Now the second question‚you cannot take any decision (on selection or rejection)‚you cannot even source (just getting people from recruitment consultancy firms)‚then what are you doing in the company? Are you working as mediator or coordinator between “Consultancies” and “Functional Departments”? In such scenarios‚how can you justify the very existence to this “department” in the organization? I am not against “Recruitment Department”‚my question is if they are not doing the very basic and key function of their department-”Sourcing” , then what they are doing?

As soon as they get the requirement from any department or any division they just call their (their selected, short listed or favorite) consultants and place the requirement. I have seen‚in some cases they are not even able to explain to the consultants‚the Job Description‚Job Specifications and roles for the profile that they are looking for. It is an irony.

Solution and Conclusion
It is not my verdict and it is not my decision. It is your company and it is for you to pay. But, I suggest to “Corporate Heads” and “HR-Heads”‚either use your all resources minus recruitment firms‚efficiently or outsource your total “Recruitment Process” to an external agency. This will save a lot of Administrative and Operational Cost. What do you say?

Thanks to: Sanjeev Sharma for his contribution

Resources for Talent Acquisition, Hiring and Recruitment

Resources for Talent Acquisition, Hiring and Recruitment


One needs to have dreams, plans, strategies to be successful in any venture. This is a basic requirement. If you do not know what you want, where you want to reach and how you want to reach (your mode and plan for success), you certainly cannot reach there. In case you are starting a new venture or you are planning to diversify your existing business, you also need to identify the source for your capital (Financial Backing). You cannot do all these things on your own. You need “extra-ordinarily talented” and Highly Skilled people to help you to reach the goal that you have seen for your organization. For this, you need a jeweller (the talented, matured and exceptionally skilled HR Professional) to identify such DIAMONDS for you. It is one of the key role of a HR Professional to identify, source, select, HIRE and RETAIN BEST of the talent from the market to work for the organization. If they cannot find talented people from the market then they need to groom the right type of people with the right type of attitude and aptitude. In 21st Century, we are in the era of “war for talent”. It is becoming difficult to get right type of people and retain them. Many companies are losing their businesses because they are not able to hire “right type of people”; because they compromised with the “quality of the talent”. In this article, we will try to explore and understand different sources to get “Best of the Talents”. Any reference of HR Department” in this article, means Team of Talent Acquisition, Hiring and Recruitment.

Different Sources To Get Talented People

As a HR Professional (Chief Talent Acquisition Officer; Hiring Manager or Recruitment Head), one should be aware of all the sources and resources to get best of the talents and they should also be aware of as how to use those resources to the optimum level. You can use either or all of the below mentioned tools to get BEST talents.

1) Existing and “Active” Candidates Data with Company

2) Employee References

3) Internal Advertisement (internal Job Posting)

4) Jobsites and Job Portals

5) Campus Hiring

6) Recruitment Consultancies

7) External (Newspaper) Advertisement

8) Social and Professional Networks & Local Communities

9) Head Hunting (Also called as “Body Shopping”)

10) Talent-Poaching

Distinction Between Headhunting and Talent Poaching

Some talent acquisition managers as well as hiring and recruitment professionals are confused and are not able to discriminate between the two. Here are few differences between the two:

1) Headhunting is associated with senior and rare profiles. Talent Poaching is just sweeping and running through talent-wealth of your competitor.

2) Headhunting is planned. Talent Poaching is targeted.

3) In headhunting, the intention is to get the BEST person for your organization but in Talent Poaching, the intention is to kill your competitor and the competition.

4) Headhunting is about getting a person with “Leadership” skills and “Global Exposure”. Talent Poaching is about “saving the training cost”.


This article is not about “Recruitment Process” or to describe about “Steps involved in Recruitment Process” but just to share the resources and channels to source and identify talent. I have taken care to list all the possible channels. I am sure all the readers will gain from this article.

I Would like to thanks Mr. Sanjeev Himachali for this contribution.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Azim Premji - "My Lessons in Life"

Azim Premji - "My Lessons in Life"

An Article Address by Azim Premji in the "Shaping Young Minds Program" (SYMP) organized by AIMA in collaboration with the Bombay Management Association (BMA) in Mumbai on "My Lessons in Life".

I am very happy to be here with you. It is always wonderful to be with young people. As my hair turned from black, to salt and pepper and finally salt without the pepper, I have begun to realize the importance of youth. At the same time, I have begun to truly appreciate some of the lessons I have learnt along the way. I hope you will find them useful when you plan your own career and life.


The first thing I have learnt is that we must always begin with our strengths. There is an imaginary story of a rabbit. The rabbit was enrolled in a rabbit school. Like all rabbits, it could hop very well but could not swim. At the end of the year, the rabbit got high marks in hopping but failed in swimming. The parents were concerned. They said, "Forget about hopping. You are anyway good at it. Concentrate on swimming." They sent the rabbit for tuitions in swimming. And guess what happened? The rabbit forgot how to hop! As for swimming, have you ever seen a rabbit swim? While it is important for us to know what we are not good at, we must also cherish what is good in us. That is because it is only our strengths that can give us the energy to correct our weaknesses.


The second lesson I have learnt is that a rupee earned is of far more value than five found. My friend was sharing me the story of his eight year-old niece. She would always complain about the breakfast. The cook tried everything possible, but the child remained unhappy. Finally, my friend took the child to a supermarket and brought one of those ready-to-cook packets. The child had to cut the packet and pour water in the dish. The child found the food to be absolutely delicious? The difference was that she has cooked it! In my own life, I have found that nothing gives as much satisfaction as earning our rewards. In fact, what is gifted or inherited follows the old rule of come easy, go easy. I guess we only know the value of what we have if we have struggled to earn it.


The third lesson I have learnt is no one bats a hundred every time. Life has many challenges. You win some and lose some. You must enjoy winning. But do not let it go to the head. The moment it does, you are already on your way to failure. And if you do encounter failure along the way, treat it as an equally natural phenomenon. Don't beat yourself for it or any one else for that matter! Accept it, look at your own share in the problem, learn from it and move on. The important thing is, when you lose, do not lose the lesson.


The fourth lesson I have learnt is the importance of humility. Sometimes, when you get so much in life, you really start wondering whether you deserve all of it. We have so much to be grateful for. Our parents, our teachers and our seniors have done so much for us that we can never repay them. Many people focus on the shortcomings, because obviously no one can be perfect. But it is important to first acknowledge what we have received. Nothing in life is permanent but when a relationship ends, rather than becoming bitter, we must learn to savor the memory of the good things while they lasted.


The fifth lesson I learnt is that we must always strive for excellence. One way of achieving excellence is by looking at those better than ourselves. Keep learning what they do differently. But excellence cannot be imposed from the outside. We must also feel the need from within. It must involve not only our mind but also our heart and soul. Excellence is not an act but a habit. I remember the inspiring lines of a poem, which says that your reach must always exceed your grasp. That is heaven on earth. Ultimately, your only competition is yourself.


The sixth lesson I have learnt is never give up in the face of adversity. It comes on you suddenly without warning. Always keep in mind that it is only the test of fire that makes fine steel. A friend of mine shared this incident with me. His eight-year old daughter was struggling away at a jigsaw puzzle. She kept at it for hours but could not succeed. Finally, it went beyond her bedtime. My friend told her, "Look, why don't you just give up? I don't think you will complete it tonight. Look at it another day." The daughter looked with a strange look in her eyes, "But, dad, why should I give up? All the pieces are there! I have just got to put them together!" If we persevere long enough, we can put any problem into its perspective.


The seventh lesson I have learnt is that while you must be open to change, do not compromise on your values. Mahatma Gandhiji often said that you must open the windows of your mind, but you must not be swept off your feet by the breeze. Values like honesty, integrity, consideration and humility have survived for generations. At the end of the day, it is values that define a person more than the achievements. Do not be tempted by short cuts. The short cut can make you lose your way and end up becoming the longest way to the destination.


And the final lesson I learnt is that we must have faith in our own ideas even if everyone tells us that we are wrong. There was once a newspaper vendor who had a rude customer. Every morning, the Customer would walk by, refuse to return the greeting, grab the paper off the shelf and throw the money at the vendor. The vendor would pick up the money, smile politely and say, "Thank you, Sir." One day, the vendor's assistant asked him, "Why are you always so polite with him when he is so rude to you? Why don't you throw the newspaper at him when he comes back tomorrow?" The vendor smiled and replied, "He can't help being rude and I can't help being polite. Why should I let his rude behavior dictate my politeness?

I hope you achieve success in whatever way you define it and what gives you the maximum happiness in life. "Remember, those who win are those who believe they can."

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Best Practices for Screening Candidates

Only one thing is certain about the procedure of screening and interviewing candidates: the huge variation in processes. But, through the years there is one that we have found to be fair, thorough (while being fairly quick), involves the right people, and (most importantly) the end decision will be one that both the company and the new hire are highly likely to be happy with.

What follows are our best practices for screening candidates.

1. Define the interview process.

Who will give input, who will be involved in the interviews, where will they be, and what are the criteria for selecting a successful candidate?

2. Develop good job and person specification.

This has the advantage that everyone knows what this person will be doing and key people in the company can give their input - with the added bonus that this can also be used for assessing performance in the future. For the person specification, are you looking for leaders or followers, someone who is inspired or inspiring?

3. Create a set list of interview questions.

Be fair on the candidates and don't leave important questions to chance. Get input from colleagues as well.

4. Conduct a first round interview.

Do a first-round interview with the hiring manager (or HR representative or consultant) to shortlist who will move on to the next step.

5. Include verbal and numerical reasoning tests and consider other psychometric tests.

These are quick, inexpensive, and can be done online. Unsuitable candidates can be objectively and consistently screened out earlier in the recruitment process. You may also want to include other psychometric tests, for instance an online Occupational Personality test. These will help you to identify for instance natural sales people or strong finishers.

Here is a list of commonly used online tests, available in many languages:

6. Invite successful candidates back for a second interview.

Make sure that the right people are involved: the hiring manager if they have not been involved before, typically at least one senior manager, and one or more peers.

This doesn't just add to the comfort-factor and a democratic selection method, it also means that the people who have given their thumbs up for the candidate will be supportive of him and her in the future (as it is in human nature that none of us likes to be wrong).

This is a great opportunity to discuss the result of the online tests, and also any relevant, work-related tests.

7. Make your informed choice!

Blog Flux Directory

Candidate's Recruitment Process

See what Mike Moore has to say.

Effective recruitment processes are vital in ensuring that an organisation has the people it needs to implement its strategy and meet its objectives. Recruitment can be expensive, but so too is the appointment of an employee who is inadequately qualified, fails to perform well or leaves the organisation before he or she has been able to make a significant contribution. The time and effort invested in planning the process of recruitment carefully can help to get the right person for the job, reduce labour turnover and enhance competitive advantage.


Recruitment is the process of attracting, assessing, selecting and employing people to carry out the work activities required by a company or an organisation. This checklist focuses on planning and undertaking the initial stages of the process. This involves assessing whether there is a need for additional or replacement staff, identifying the tasks to be carried out, specifying the kind of person needed, finding a pool of suitable candidates and drawing up a shortlist.

Action checklist

1. Review staff requirements

Take a broad view of your staffing needs and consider whether you really have a vacancy. If an employee is leaving, review the work load and decide whether a full-time permanent replacement is needed or whether an alternative option would be more appropriate. For example, would a part-time or temporary worker be sufficient? Should the work be restructured or outsourced? What would the staffing implications of this be?

2. Consult with those involved

Take any organisational policies and procedures into account. Authorisation for a replacement or a new appointment may be needed from senior management. Consult with your personnel or HR department if you have one, as they will have expertise in this area. Ask yourself which other departments may have an interest in the appointment--it may be possible to make it a joint effort. Where possible, talk to the previous holder of the post. Discuss the job role with the relevant supervisor, and especially with the people the new employee will be working with.

3. Specify the sort of person you are looking for

List the duties, responsibilities and relationships involved in the job role and define the level of authority the post holder will have. If you are filling a post that has been vacated, consider whether the job should be carried out in the same way or whether there are changes that you wish to make. Decide what qualifications and skills are required; what type and length of experience is needed and which personal attributes will be important. This will enable you to draw up an up to date job description and person specification. State how soon the person is expected to be competent in the job, what training you are prepared to give and set a target start date.

4. Research the labour market

Review the job description and person specification and ask yourself whether you are likely to find what you are looking for in one person. If so, undertake some research to gauge the pay and benefits package you will need to offer. Salary surveys are usually expensive, but are often summarised in the press at the time of publication. Monitoring job advertisements and networking with employers in your area and sector can also give you an idea of current pay rates. You should also consider whether you will be able to find suitable candidates locally or need to look further afield.

5. Comply with legal requirements

Recruitment activities are covered by a growing body of legislation and codes of practice designed to exclude discrimination and unfair treatment. These include: the Sex Discrimination Act 1975, the Race Relations Act 1976, the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, the Employment (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2002; the Employment (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003 and the CRE statutory Code of Practice on Equality in Employment. Keep yourself up to date with the latest developments to ensure that you follow good practice and don't infringe the regulations.

6. Plan how to find and attract candidates

* Start within your organisation. Are there any employees suitable for promotion or re-assignment? Even if you are doubtful, it is important to advertise internally as a courtesy to staff who may wish to apply, and because they may have friends or relations who will be interested in the position.

* Check records of any previous applicants, whether unsolicited or otherwise. Draw on any appropriate contacts. For example, training organisations may be useful, whether you are looking for apprentices or MBAs.

* Decide whether to use the services of a recruitment agency to identify and shortlist candidates for you, weighing the costs incurred, against the time and expertise at your disposal.

* Consider whether e-recruitment techniques, using either a corporate website or an e-recruitment service would be appropriate.

7. Decide where to advertise

If you decide to advertise independently rather than use an agency, think through the options and decide which is most likely to reach the kind of candidates you have in mind:

* local job centre

* local or national press

* specialist publications, such as the magazines of professional bodies or trade associations

* Internet recruitment sites and mailing lists.

Research the costs involved and decide what you can afford.

8. Write the advertisement

Decide if you and/or other staff have the skills and knowledge required to draw up an advert. If your organisation has a personnel department they will probably take on this task, but do ensure that you are involved throughout the process. In the case of a senior post, or if you are recruiting in large numbers, you may wish to hire an advertising agency to draft the advert and place it appropriately. It is preferable to name your organisation in the advert rather than use a box number unless you have particular reasons for secrecy, as a box number could deter some applicants. Ensure that the advert provides the following details clearly and succinctly:

* duties and responsibilities of the job

* qualifications and experience required

* personal qualities sought

* location

* some indication of the salary range

* form of reply you require i.e. a CV and covering letter or completion of an application form

* the deadline for the submission of applications

* whether further information is available and in what form.

It is important to ensure that the advertisement complies with relevant legislation. Bear in mind too, that it will be on public display and ensure that it presents a positive picture of your organisation which will attract candidates.

If you are using an application form, check that it requests all the details you will need to help you assess the candidates. It can also be helpful to ask a colleague to complete the form from the perspective of a candidate to ensure that it is clear. Prepare an information pack to send out to those requesting further information.

9. Draw up a short-list

Decide how many people you wish to interview, probably five or six at the most. Ask other colleagues, including a supervisor or manager, to help you sift through the applications and take their opinions into account. Be as objective as you can, matching the candidates against the requirements you have defined. Look out for any unexplained employment gaps, and assess the quality of presentation and how well the replies are tailored to the specific job.

10. Reply to candidates

Contact those you do not wish to interview as quickly as possible. Treat them courteously, thanking them for their interest in your organisation and the position. You may wish to keep a few candidates in reserve, in case none of those on the shortlist proves suitable. Contact the candidates on the shortlist to check that they are still interested in the job and arrange a date and time for interview. Make sure that you provide directions so that candidates can find you and be clear about whether you are prepared to meet travel expenses.

11. Next steps

The following checklists cover the next stages in the recruitment process:

* Steps in successful selection interviewing

* Organising the induction of new recruits

How not to plan recruitment


* assume you have a vacancy before reviewing the current situation carefully

* skimp on the preparation of an appropriate job description and person specification

* overlook suitable internal candidates

* ignore relevant legislation

Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO)

See what Mike Moore has to say on RPO.

Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO)

RPO as a highly customized, fully integrated single-source solution in which expert consultants manage all of a client’s human capital requirements, either on-site from their location or from the provider’s. The goal is to attract the highest-quality talent while also bringing improved processes and efficiencies to the organization. To do this, providers leverage brand, leading-edge technology, proven diagnostic and metrics, and their global reach.

RPO is meant to be customized to what an individual company needs rather than a one-size-fits-all approach to the recruitment function. A good recruitment partner must be agile and prepared to scale its support as client needs fluctuate. When done correctly, it is clear that RPO helps build stronger teams, which positively affects customer satisfaction and improves business results. The right RPO partner will offer:

• Expertise and a solid track record. Companies are looking to leverage RPO providers who offer best practices when it comes to volume recruitment strategies.

• Speed. It is a constant challenge to find the right people as quickly as possible, so identifying strategies to reduce time-to-hire is
critically important to any company’s core business.

• High quality. Just about anyone can fill a seat, but a good RPO provider will deliver top-quality candidates with the expertise required and within the pre-defined parameters while also bolstering the overall recruitment process.

• Cost control. Savings can be spread across an organization when recruitment efficiencies occur or when variable cost models are employed. An upfront diagnostic can identify many of the hidden flaws in the internal recruiting process, while mutually agreed-upon metrics can ensure that the results are achieved both on time and on budget.

• Technology-supported strategic objectives. The right blend of HR expertise with leading-edge technology support (not vice versa).

• Global oversight. Companies insist on maintaining and reinforcing control of their recruitment function, and we find this to be particularly true for international clients. With this in mind, a good RPO provider will honor that need while also adding value, improved communication, and strategic insights every step of the way.
• Pan-Country and/or global capabilities. An RPO partner with a large global footprint can scale to meet demands that change over time.

While each company faces unique challenges with its industry, geographic footprint, and sheer size, there are a few definitive signs that it might be time to consider outside support of your recruitment function. Here are a few points to consider:

Your company has immediate plans to hire high volumes of employees—from a few dozen to hundreds or more—in three to five months.
These imminent volume hires are for highly specialized roles (engineering, finance/accounting, healthcare, etc.).
Your organization requires these volume hires to be strategically placed across multiple geographies.
You work for a start-up organization or are planning to relocate.
Your company faces a significant shift in business strategy and/or plans to launch new products or services.
Merger or acquisition plans are on your company’s horizon.

An RPO might be right if you face complex recruitment challenges requiring long-term strategic and day-to-day tactical support. RPO in one market is gaining momentum.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

My Favourite Quotes

"Anything in life worth having is worth working for." - Andrew Carnegie

"Success often comes to those who dare to act. It seldom goes to the timid who are ever afraid of the consequences." - Jawaharlal Nehru

"Success is never ending, failure is never final." - Dr. Robert Schuller

"I just love when people say I can’t do something because all my life people said I wasn’t going to make it." - Ted Turner
"Great thoughts speak only to the thoughtful mind, but great actions speak to all mankind." - Emily P. Bissell

"Obstacles are those frightful things you can see when you take your eyes off your goal." - Henry Ford

"It takes a strong fish to swim against the current. Even a dead one can float with it." - John Crowe

"You will never find time for anything. You must make it." - Charles Buxton

"Remove failure as an option." - Joan Lunden

"There is no one giant step that does it. It's a lot of little steps." - Peter A. Cohen

"Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you will land among the stars." - Les

"Some of us have great runways already built for us. If you have one, take off. But if you don't have one, realize it is your responsibility to grab a shovel and build one for yourself and for those who will follow after you." - Amelia Earhart

"Work like you don't need the money. Love like you've never been hurt. Dance like nobody is watching." - Mark Twain

"What the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve." - Napoleon Hill

"There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure." - Colin Powell

"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance." - Samuel Johnson

"The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will." - Vince Lombardi

"The man who follows the crowd will usually get no further than the crowd. The man who walks alone is likely to find himself in places no one has ever been." -
Alan Ashley-Pitt

"It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you'll do things differently." - Warren Buffett

"Champions aren't made in the gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them - a desire, a dream, a vision." - Muhammad Ali

"Dwell not on the past. Use it to illustrate a point, then leave it behind. Nothing really matters except what you do now in this instant of time. From this moment onwards you can be an entirely different person, filled with love and
understanding, ready with an outstretched hand, uplifted and positive in every thought and deed." - Eileen Caddy

"The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It's as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today. The true entrepreneur is a doer." - Nolan Bushnell

"Whatever you vividly imagine, ardently desire, sincerely believe, and enthusiastically act upon must inevitably come to pass!" - Paul J. Meyer

"Keep away from small people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you too can become great." - Mark Twain

"For anything worth having one must pay the price; and the price is always work, patience, love, self-sacrifice. No paper currency, no promises to pay, but the gold of real service." - John Burroughs

"To be successful, you must decide exactly what you want to accomplish, then resolve to pay the price to get it." - Bunker Hunt

"You just can't beat the person who never gives up." - Babe Ruth

"When you get right down to the root of the meaning of the word 'succeed', you find it simply means to follow through." - F.W. Nichol

"Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, 'What's in it for me?'" - Brian Tracy

"If you don't set goals, you can't regret not reaching them." - Yogi Berra