HR Professionals : Everything to know about the HR domain

HR professionals play a significant role in taking any organization to greater heights. Being a people’s person is not an easy job to do, day in and day out. To be in constant touch with the workforce, listening to their woes and becoming the bridge between the employee and the employer, HR does it all! But what is it exactly to be an HR professional? What are the latest trends in the HR world? What can someone do to become HR? How to carry out the duties efficiently when the HR’s role is mainly on the job training? What are some of the hardships that the HR personnel face? There are many questions. Let’s just find out the answers to some of these in the article below!

So, let’s start with an easy one!

What are the duties of an HR professional?

The HR’s job description includes several roles that they need to perform depending on the needs and requirements of the firm. So, broadly outlining, some of them are:

  • Analyzing the needs of the company and thus carry out the recruitment drive
  • Interviewing and hiring the right candidates
  • Formulate the compensation structure and process payrolls for the employees
  • Conduct disciplinary actions for the employees and moderate their behaviour
  • Update and keep a record of the policies of the organization
  • Maintain employee records and the kind of work performed by them
  • On boarding, training of employees
  • Provides means for continuing an employee’s education
  • Keeping workshops and helping employees to discuss their career growth

What are the skills required to become an HR professional?

Like every job role, the role of HR also demands a set of skills that needs to be mastered to succeed in this field. Some of these key skills are:

  • Communication skills: This includes clear writing and speaking skills, which is required for being a good negotiator, a good and critical listener as is required for listening to the employees and an outstanding conflict management skill, which is the most important for resolving everyday conflicts in the workplace.
  • Administrative or Organization skills: This includes skills like managing records of employee leaves, the employee in and out times, payroll, absence and many more. This comprises the major daily task force of HR, so mastering this skill is a must. This also includes the skill to maintain a proper calendar and have impeccable time management skills.
  • Confidentiality skills: One of the most important skills of HR is to be as confidential as possible. Being the trustworthy ear to all the employees requires the skill of being discreet. They need to be trustworthy in the eyes of the workforce so that they can open up to HR. Having a strong sense of ethics is the key skill of any professional, and that goes without saying.
  • Adaptability skills: As everyone says, change is the only constant! So, the ability to change old traditions to give way to new ones is kind of like HR’s job. The ability to see the big picture while predicting the number of employees required to be hired in the next recruitment skills requires strategic skills.

These are some of the soft and hard skills that any aspiring HR needs to master to have a fruitful career in the HR domain. Having great communication skills and analytical skills are a must to do the job well, and good convincing skills can help a candidate have a bright future as an HR.

How to be a successful HR professional?

  • Having a strategic approach for every problem that you encounter, aligning the company’s goals with the current doings of the firm, the ability to make decisions upfront is what makes someone a great HR.
  • Being the firm’s voice, using it effectively during new hires, in meetings, aiding in conflict resolution is what will help HR be a good professional.
  • Adapting to the current tech trends in the industry, thereby becoming tech-savvy will help HR to go a long way.
  • Being flexible in the way of approaching people, in the way of dealing with things. Rigidity never helped anyone reach anywhere. The ability to sense changes, adapt to them and learn from them is what makes a successful HR.
  • Work closely with all the other departments, learn their needs and what do they expect from HR. Collaboration with all the departments will give insights regarding what can be done to meet their shortcomings and thus serve as a great bonding exercise and a strong team for any company.
  • Take risks, inspire others, work smartly and put your 100% in whatever you do.

What are the hardships faced by HR?

Being an HR is not a cakewalk. Like every other task, it also has its share of hardships. Some of these are:

  • Firing an employee: It is disheartening to take away someone’s source of livelihood, and in every firm, HRs are the messengers to do that. This is probably the toughest part of their job description.
  • Recruiting the correct fit for the company: Not only is recruiting a time-consuming process, but even the cost of acquiring is huge, and thus no company wants to waste so many resources on a wrong hire. So, HR needs to make sure that the hired person is the right match for the company.
  • Dealing with lawsuits: Sitting across the table from a lawyer dealing with costly settlements and negotiations, being a witness, a defender and an advocate, is a tiring job and no one other than HR needs to deal with it.
  • Implementing new rules and values: Now and then the company needs to keep up with the evolving trends and change its rules. The formulation of rules is a part of HR’s job, and correct implementation and making sure that everyone follows the new rules is a tough job to do.

Why is HR predominantly full of women?

It is a well-known fact that HR is a domain that has been dominated by women. Now, women being naturally empathetic, having great communication skills and being a people’s person are reasons for the same, but there are other reasons for this as well. Men not being attracted to the HR domain can also be cited as the reason for this inequality. Women are more attracted to this field mainly due to the dominant use of the soft skills aspect of the job description.

History also has something to contribute to this issue. In the late 19th century, the job of welfare workers was assigned to women, and the current-day role of HR is thought of as akin to this job. Having better influencing skills and not being able to look at the results directly in HR makes fewer men want to take up the HR role and are more attracted to the job of sales or finance. So, this makes HR traditionally a field dominated by females.

What are some of the recommended HR books and websites to be followed?

Reading up and keeping oneself updated with the happenings in the HR world is a smart decision to make. So, some of the popular HR books to help one to polish the HR knowledge and get started with the basics of this domain are:

  • Human Resource Management – Gary Dessler
  • HR from the Outside In: Six Competencies for the future of Human Resources Dave Ulrich, Jon Younger, Wayne Brockbank, Mike Ulrich
  • Work Rules! – Laszlo Bock
  • First, Break All The Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently – Marcus Buckingham, Curt Coffman
  • Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t – Jim Collins

Some of the popular HR websites to be followed are:

  • Genesis HR Solutions
  • SHRM in the News
  • HR Bartender
  • TLNT
  • Talent Culture

What are the current trends in the HR world?

In this ever-evolving world, new trends are coming into the market almost daily, and the HR domain is no exception. So, keeping up with these trends to be ahead in this race is what every firm must do. In the face of the pandemic, everything has seen a radical change to accommodate the remote working aspect. So, some of these new HR trends in the face of the pandemic are:

  • WFH Policies: Creating new and customizable work from home policies (which is the need of the hour and we are sure is going to stay for a long time!) which are required by every firm.
  • Employee experience: Reinventing ways of hiring, onboarding, training and even firing people in this remote working atmosphere, basically reinventing the entire employee experience.
  • Tech dependency: Increased dependency on tech like zoom calls, google meets and many more to make the employees feel connected to each other and be a part of the team. Digitization and automation both are the need of the hour.
  • Upskilling: Upskilling the HR teams, to become more proficient in data handling, decision making, digital integration and becoming analytical experts.
  • HR being the drivers: In the face of uncertainty, companies look towards HRs to provide solutions, and in this massive shift in work atmosphere, HRs have been handling it like the front-line workers.

HR domain is filled with its version of thrills and excitement. HR professionals are the voice of any organization. They make sure that the workplace is a happy space for all the employees working there. So, if you are a people’s person, you can lend a listening ear, are proficient in managing time, records and people, so the HR department is just for you!

The Full and Final Settlement (FnF)

Leaving an old job to start a new stint? Severing all the ties with the old firm? Bidding goodbye to the place to start afresh? All of these feel great, and leaving behind the old firm means finally settling all the dues with the old organization in the form of a full and final settlement. Letting the employee enjoy the last few days in the organization when the management takes care of all the leaving formalities is a great thing, and full and final settlement plays the most crucial role. So, here in this article, we will discuss the process and components of the full and final settlement offer and how it is carried out.

What is a full and final settlement?

The full and final settlement also known as the FnF settlement, is done when an employee submits his/her resignation from the firm and is a process that is undertaken during this period. This process is carried out based on the guidelines which have already been drawn upon in the appointment contract. During this time, the employee has to be paid for his services to the firm for the last month, bonuses, additional deductions, or earnings. This entire process of paying and recovering during the resignation process of employees is included in the FnF settlement. The company can either conduct the FnF process and then release the employee or can do vice-versa. It depends on the company’s policy.

Sometimes, exit interviews and surveys from the leaving candidates also form a part of the FnF process. These help the firm in assessing their strengths and weaknesses and how they can improve better. It also helps the firm keep track of the number of resources handed to the employees and helps the firm in collecting them back. The H.R. department generally takes care of this process as its completion requires extensive knowledge in this domain.

How does the company carry out the full and final settlement process?

It is a complex and time-consuming process. So, most of the firms follow a basic procedure to get through this settlement process.

STEP 1: The employee comes forward and informs the company about his intention to resign from the firm and thus submits a resignation letter.

STEP 2: The management team of the company accepts the resignation of the employee after overviewing it.

STEP 3:  The resigning employee has to submit a no dues certificate to the H.R. department from the department he/she is from and other concerned departments.

STEP 4: The company prepares the reimbursement statement that the employee will receive from the company, which includes paid leaves, pensions, gratuity amounts and many more.

STEP 5: The FnF statement is prepared, which includes both the reimbursement and recovery amounts, and this is then sent to the accounts department to review. The accounts department then accepts/rejects it and then the H.R. creates the final statement and asks for the cheque for the final clearing.

What are the major components of the FnF settlement?

The FnF settlement has many components that the H.R. needs to take care of before handing over the full and final settlement to the leaving employee. It involves paying and recovering many components. Preparing the reimbursement statement is a mammoth task and has to be done critically. So, let us see the different components of the FnF settlement process in detail.

  • Unpaid Salary: The most important component refers to the time duration between the day the employee submitted the resignation and his/her last working day. It can also include the salaries of past previous months, for which salaries have not been provided yet. It also includes the Leave Travel Allowance (L.T.A.) and other arrears.

Unpaid salary = (# days the employee worked * gross monthly salary)/26 (or the # paid workdays in a month)

  • Non-availed leaves and Bonus: All the leaves the employee is entitled to but has not taken need to be encashed. All the bonuses and credits are also added to the FnF settlement. As per Section 79 (11) of the Factories Act 1948, when the employee resigns, all of his/her unpaid leaves must be paid on or before the 7th & 10th of the coming month. Also, according to Section 15 (3) of the Karnataka Shops and Commercial Establishment Act, all the encashment dues should be paid by the 10th of the next month.

Non-availed leaves and Bonus = (# of days of unavailing leaves * monthly salary)/26 (or the # paid workdays in a month)

  • Gratuity: It is the cash benefit provided by the employers to the employees for their continued service to the firm. The regulation states that the gratuity amount has to be paid within 30 days of the employee leaving the company if the employee has completed a minimum of 4 years of 240 days in the firm, or else interest has to be paid on the amount if 30 days pass without the company paying the gratuity amount.

Gratuity = (15 days of last drawn salary for each working year * total tenure of the employee working in the firm)/ 26 (or the # paid workdays in a month)

  • Deductions: It includes provident fund, Income tax, professional tax (if applicable), and compensation if the notice period is not served. Gratuity amounts and encashed earned leaves are exempted from T.D.S. as per the Income Tax Act. All the other payments attract T.D.S. Segment 72 (5) under the E.P.F. Act 1952 makes it mandatory for all the businesses to forward the Employer’s Provident Fund (E.P.F.) guarantee forms within 5 days of the employee submitting its claim.

Income tax deductions depend on the bracket in which the employee’s salary falls. Like employees with a salary of 2.5LPA are exempted from Income Tax, salary between 2.5-5 L.P.A. attracts a deduction of 5% and so on.

  • Pension: Employees who have completed 10 years of their pensionable service with the organization are eligible for pensions and can claim them by providing their “Scheme Certificate” after 58 years of age or their retirement. Most of the time, pensions are provided as a part of E.P.S., and it specifies a range of pensions between Rs. 1000 – Rs.7500.

Pension = (Pensionable salary * period of service)/70

When does the Full and Final Settlement Process occur?

According to the rules, the final settlement must happen on the employee’s last working day in the firm. However, clearance from the various departments takes time, so it must be done within 30-45 days after the employee’s last working day at the firm.

Gratuity must be paid within 30 days of the employee’s last day, while the bonuses must be paid within the current accounting period. Employees must be given a specified period if they are being removed from the company so that they can use the time to think about their future, and the same goes for the employees that they must inform the firm beforehand if they plan on leaving the organization. Failure to do this will attract penalties during the FnF settlement process.

In conclusion, FnF is a detailed process that has to be done with full concentration. It is H.R.’s domain, but most companies use specialized soft wares for carrying out the FnF process. Going by the rules, the FnF will help the firm to achieve maximum growth and avoid employee dues.  

Employee retention rate: formula and practices

Employees are the backbone of any firm. A solid employee base makes a strong firm and helps the firm in achieving its long-term goals. In today’s competitive world, where every firm is in search of the right talent, to make their base strong, where poaching employees have become a common practice, companies must hold their top talents tight enough. They must make elaborate plans to retain them in the long-run as everyone knows hiring someone completely new is a long, exhausting and an expensive process. So, having employee retention plans in order, planning extensively on employee retention formulas and how to calculate them are something that must be included in the company’s strategic planning. So, let us start with understanding what exactly the employee retention rate is?

What is the employee retention rate?

Employee retention is generally expressed as the percentage of the workforce that has stayed with the company for a fixed period. It is the employees that stuck around in the firm till now. It is often expressed as a statistic as it is such an important matrix for measuring HR analytics. Retaining employees is a huge task for employers and is a constant work to keep the employees motivated so that they choose to remain employed and provide benefits to the company. So, effective employee retention strategies must be in place to reduce employee turnover and the costs associated with it.

Why do employees leave jobs?

There are quite a few reasons as to why do the employees leave their jobs. So, some of them are:

  • Lack of job satisfaction
  • Too much workload for the employee to handle leads to employee burnout
  • Bad relationships with co-workers and bosses
  • A feeling of not being recognized at work
  • Lack of flexibility
  • No career advancement
  • The bad work culture of the firm
  • Insufficient compensation

Why is employee retention so important for the firm?

Employees are the most important asset of any firm. So, keeping the back at any firm must be of utmost importance. So, employee retention is important due to the following factors:

  • Reduced time and cost wastage of the firm: Hiring new employees is a big blow to the company’s resources in terms of both time and cost, and companies want to minimize it as much as possible.
  • Keep the productive flow of the firm going: Employees who work for a longer period builds up a bond with the company and the team and are more skilful and they how to contribute to the firm’s success.
  • Reduced training times: New employees require huge training periods to get accustomed to the firm’s business, so the entire process has to be repeated.

What is the formula for the employee retention rate?

Calculating employee retention rate is a mammoth task, and there is a simple formula that most firms use to arrive at an answer. So, the formula is:

Employee retention rate formula = (Number of employees who stayed with the company for the entire period/ Number of employees in the firm at the start of the period) *100


Employee retention rate formula = [(Total number of employees – Number of employees that left)/Total number of employees] *100

So, any 2 of the 3 inputs are required for calculating the retention rate:

  • Number of employees at the beginning of the period
  • Number of employees who stuck till the end of the period
  • Number of employees who left during the period

How to calculate the employee retention rate?

Let us understand how to calculate employee retention rate using an example:


Suppose the company hired 25 employees in April and 5 of them were replaced by the month-end. So, what is the retention rate for April?

Total no. of employees = 25

No. of employees who left the firm= 5

So, no. of employees still at the firm = 25-5 = 20

 So, retention rate = (20/25) *100

                           = 80%

One important thing to note here is that, while calculating the retention rate, if

some of the employees have left the firm and then they are replaced, then these new employees are not taken into account. Here, as the number of people hired, fired or replaced are not taken into account while calculating the retention rate, so to have a clear idea about the employee landscape in any firm, the employee turnover ratio must also be taken into account.

What is a good employee retention rate?

There are no such hard and fast rules but a benchmark to see how the firms are performing as compared to the other firms. Firms can have a good retention rate, but if the few people who are leaving the firm are the top talents, then the firm might not be in good shape. A good employee retention ratio is more than 90% for all sectors worldwide. But in recent years, the retention rates in India have dropped to 80-85% and is dropping further, which is a topic of worry.

What is an employee retention strategy?

Employee retention strategies are practices that the firms follow to retain their top talents and prevent them from leaving the organization. The company aims at minimizing employee turnover as higher turnover rates are expensive and time-consuming. Losing an employee affects the team morale, reduces productivity and creates a wreck in the workflow if the leaving employee is someone at a higher post like a manager or higher. So, employee retention strategies should be in place in every firm, and every firm must make sure that they have the least turnover percentage.

What are some of the effective employee retention strategies?

Some of the effective employee retention strategies are:

  • The retention process starts with the recruitment process by identifying the employees who will stay for the long haul – Looking for candidates who stayed longer at their previous jobs, having qualities of loyalty, patience, perseverance must be the first pick as employees for the firm. Job hopping candidates are risky as they may leave the firm as soon as another opportunity knocks on their door.
  • Providing education support and clear advancement in careers: Many employees leave because they feel stuck at their jobs with no way out, and thus they do not see any advancement in their career. So, firms that provide continuous promotions make the employees realize that they are a crucial part of the firm and are valued. Also, helping the candidates in developing the right skills for the job role helps in retaining employees.
  • Providing the right kind of benefits to the employees: Benefits and perks play a huge role in keeping the employees satisfied and happy in their jobs. Providing stock options, flexible work options, generous paid leaves, health insurance, and many more is one of the most effective ways of retaining employees.
  • Keep the communication channels open between the lower level and top-level management: Doing this makes the employees realize their opinions and voice matters, and they can provide useful insights into important matters. And people tend to stay where they are a matter for a longer period.
  • Using data, AI to work and leveraging technology: Use employee’s data to predict which employees are most likely to leave and then work on retaining them by working on the factors which will cause them to leave.
  • Provide a nice and happy working environment to the employees: A happy employee stays the longest, and a good work environment is something that contributes greatly to that.

Employee retention is a crucial matter for every organization, and retention strategies must be carefully planned out so that the firms have the strongest workforce. Improving the retention rate every year must be the firm’s goal, and careful thought must be put into it.

HR Audit – Needs, Types and Process

The HR team probably plays the most important role in any organization i.e., managing the workforce. Handling their grievances and looking after almost everything be it the job descriptions, onboarding, salaries, benefits packages, leaves, company policies, the HR manager handles everything like a pro. A well-functioning HR plays a key role in deciding whether the firm is a success or a failure. So, the HR department needs to be handled with utmost care. So, how do you decide whether the HR people are taken care of appropriately or not? This is the role of HR audit. Making the firm aware of its pitfalls and strengths, an HR audit does it all. So, an in-depth overview of all the firm’s activities to understand its strengths and weakness is what an audit does and must be taken seriously.

What is an HR audit?

In layman’s term, an HR audit is kind of a test to evaluate the performance of the human resources department of any firm. It takes a look into all the tasks and activities performed by HR ranging from policies, documentation, systems and everything that comes under the HR preview. The main motive of any HR audit is to look into the areas that are causing troubles and how can be improved. An outsider can be hired by the company to do an external audit or the firm can ask the HR department to perform an internal audit as well.

Some of the areas which the audit department looks into are:

  • Hiring process
  • The onboarding process for the new employees
  • Salary and benefits packages
  • Performance reviews of the employees
  • Termination of tenure of any employee
  • Job descriptions of new job openings
  • Exit interviews if any, and many more

What is the need for conducting an HR audit?

An HR audit makes sure that all the processes in the firm are running smoothly and also makes the firm aware of any kind of pitfalls that they have. So, the needs of conducting an HR audit regularly are:

  • Measures the effectiveness of the HR department and its management of goals, missions, objectives and strategies.
  • It serves as the assessment tool and thus provides a basis for improvement in the future.
  • Helps the HR department in proper understanding their roles and how to deliver them efficiently.
  • Making sure that all the company’s workings comply with the laws of the government.
  • Reviews the resource allocation for the HR department.
  • Evaluates the performance of employees and staffs.
  • Ensures proper implementation of all the policies and seeks explanations in case of success and failure of the HR.
  • It serves as a measure of check and due diligence for all the investors and stakeholders of the firm so that they get an assurance that the company is working efficiently.
  • To enhance the brand value of the firm in the market with the perfect audit results.
  • Important for delegation of authority and to decentralize the power distributed at the centre.

What are the different types of HR audits that the companies can undertake?

There are many different types of HR audit that the firm needs to perform. Let us look at them objectively:

  • I-9 Audit: An I-9 form must be present for all the employees in the company. This form is a legal requirement for all companies to verify that all of their employees have valid employment authorization. This audit checks for any mistakes in the filling of this form.
  • Policy or handbook audit: This audit reviews all the current and upcoming policies of the company and makes sure that they comply with the laws. It also makes sure that all the employees are well versed with the policies and everyone has a copy of this and the employer has a signed acknowledgement from everyone.
  • Legal Compliance audit: This makes sure that the company’s practices are in sync with the employment laws. This is performed to make sure that there is legal compliance with the reporting laws and regulations. It looks into leaves structure, health and safety, disability structure etc.
  • Departmental or Functional audit: This audit keeps on changing focus from one department to another to make sure that all the divisions within the company work on regulations be it payroll, performance management or any other.
  • Salary and working hours audit: This looks into the problems in salary structures and the working hours of the employees. It reviews the legal working hours, salary calculations, benefits computations, overtime calculations etc.
  • Safety audit: This looks into the necessary safety measures taken by the firm for its employees’ health. It makes sure that the firm limits the risk to which it exposes its employees.
  • Hiring process audit: It reviews the hiring process of the company and makes sure that they are efficient, non-discriminatory and fair.
  • Employee training audit: This looks into the employee training and development programs at the firm and what new programs to introduce and how to improve the old ones.
  • Benefits and compensation package audit: This looks into the minimum wage, compensation according to the company’s objectives, employee benefits and whether certain information like health insurance benefits are kept a secret or not.
  • Exemption audit: This makes sure that all the employees that are classified as exempt from overtime are still qualified to receive the exemption.

What is the process of conducting an HR Audit?

The HR audit process is a six-step checklist that needs to be followed.

STEP 1: Determining the scope and the type of audit that needs to be conducted

Determining the scope of the audit is the first step, where which all kinds of audit needs to be performed is mentioned and if the audit is performed for the first time, a comprehensive review of all the policies and HR practices needs to be done, or if the audit is for a specific purpose then that needs to be stated clearly.

STEP 2: Develop the plan and the audit questionnaire

Careful documentation of all the answers that need to be found by conducting this audit, must be done. All the specific questions that need to be answered must be included, goal identification, assembling the audit team and forming a timeline for completing the audit must be made.

STEP 3: Collection and analysis of data

Collection of all the applicable documents and forms outlined under the scope, review and analyze them to gather insights about the current HR practices in the company.

STEP 4: Formation of the report

The next step after analyzing all the information collected is documenting all the findings in the form of a report of the audit. This report must include all the strengths and the weaknesses found during conducting the audit and the recommendations on how the weaknesses can be converted to strong suits.

STEP 5: Creation of an action plan

After the completion of the audit, all the executives should meet with the audit team to discuss in detail how the shortcomings found can be addressed and improved. Some of the action plans include changes in the policies, training practices, correcting non-compliance issues. The audit process must be kept confidential.

STEP 6: Evaluate the progress after the audit

The audit team must continuously monitor the corrective actions taken by the firm to improve its shortcomings and create review checks periodically so that all the practices in the firms stay compliant.

An HR audit can be thought of as periodic checks that the form must undertake to make sure that they are on the right track. The audit must be kept confidential and must not be subjected to unnecessary disclosures. Every firm must undertake an HR audit once a year so that the performance of the HR department can be regulated.

Hiring decision process and Shortage of applicants

Hiring is one of the most crucial decisions that any firm has to make. It has to be strategically planned, curated and executed so that it addresses all the needs and demands of the firm. Making the right hiring strategy and aligning it with the business’s long-term strategy is of utmost importance. For hiring the perfect fit for the company, a common matrix needs to be decided for assessing all the candidates, and a large applicant pool must be there to choose from, but nowadays many sectors are suffering from a shortage of applicants, and there are various reasons for the short-supply of talent amidst the rising demand. So, let us explore some of the reason why the firms are suffering from a shortage of applicants and what is the correct hiring decision process that the firm must undertake.

Shortage of applicants – The new dilemma

A new and disturbing trend emerging in the market is that finding quality candidates for job positions is taking a huge time, and there is a shortage of applicants for job positions. The landscape is changing due to several social and economic factors. Job openings are there in the market, but skilled people are not available who can take up the role. There is a skill gap that is widening. Many companies also have an outdated recruitment strategy that needs to be polished and radicalized. A serious problem that needs to be looked after, let us look at some of the reasons for the same.

What are the reasons for the Shortage of applicants?

  • A talent shortage: A required talent for the job opening is scarce, and most of the people lack the technical skills required for the job.
  • Rapid innovation: With rapid innovation, more and more people are finding it difficult to adapt to the changing requirements and thus lack the skills.
  • The millennial challenge: This generation finds it easy to job hop, and thus no candidate sticks at the job long enough, and there is a perpetual need for candidates to fill up the positions.
  • The lower brand image of the firm: One of the reasons might be that the company has a lesser-identified brand image, and the job advertisement is not reaching many people.
  • Candidates lack experience: Companies need an experienced candidate, and people are with no experience, such an odd combination!
  • Increased competition amongst firms: Nowadays, firms compete with one another to hire the best talent, and some might win, some might lose! So, there is a shortage of skilful applicants.
  • Presence of culture “quirks”: Some companies might have some characteristics in their work culture, which makes it difficult for the new hires to gel up with. Thus, retention rates for these firms are quite high.
  • Outdated recruitment strategy: Being out there on social media, in the eyes of job searcher, makes the company more visible rather than using the age-old method of using job listings in newspapers.

So, owing to the above facts, many firms are facing a shortage of applications on their job listings. The major problem that the companies can handle from their side is having a great hiring decision process ready that is more according to today’s tech-savvy world and improving their brand name in the process so that more candidates want to apply for the position.

What is a hiring decision process?

An efficient hiring decision process is the step-by-side guide for an organization for identifying the needs of the firm, searching from the talent pool, interviewing the candidates and finally hiring the perfect fit who is also the most qualified for the organization. Most companies, regardless of their size, have a well-thought-of and panned hiring process already in place. Every hiring process has the same basic steps required for hiring, which the company can customize according to their needs and the industry they are in. So, to make the correct hiring decision, a comprehensive step by step guide must be followed.

What are the different steps in a hiring process?

As already discussed, the hiring decision is a carefully laid out, step by step approach, which every form needs to follow for efficient hiring. So, the steps are as follows:

STEP 1: Need Identification for hiring

The hiring process begins with the identification of the need to increase the workforce either for filling up a new position or better manage the workload or expanding the organization. The key is to identify the kind of job role that needs to be filled and finding the appropriate candidate.

STEP 2: Make a recruitment plan

An essential step of the recruitment process is to devise the entire process, provide clear instructions to all the people involved in the hiring process about their roles, employees who will provide input, employees who will select the candidate. This step also involves how to make a clear job description, advertising the opening, reviewing applications, the process of taking the interviews and the final hiring.

STEP 3:  Making a clear job description

A job description includes job requirements, qualifications required, characteristics and the required experience for the specific job role.

STEP 4: Advertising the job opening

Advertise the job opening to the employees so that the position can be filled by internal hiring or publicize it on social media and various job sites so that external hiring can be done.

STEP 5: Reviewing of applications

The next step is reviewing all the applicants to eliminate all the candidates who do not fit the minimum requirement criteria, which can be done either by an ATS or manually by the team. Then the candidates are decided upon whose interview is to be taken.

STEP 6: Initial screening of the candidates

If the applicant pool is large, only the interview round won’t be possible for so many people. So, there must be some initial screening of the candidates, which serves as the elimination round for non-suitable candidates. This round may also have a phone interview round, where the candidates are interviewed to make sure that they align with the company’s values and to choose the candidates for the final round of interview.

STEP 7: Final interviews

Depending upon the company’s needs, there can be multiple rounds of interviews. Early interviews are generally based on the person’s skills, knowledge and work history. The next round of interviews can be group interviews which can be more in-depth or with team members to see how the dynamics between them will be. There can be more round of interviews with the specialist of that field, and the final round of interviews can be with the senior leadership team or the HR round, which is offered to a very small pool of candidates.

After all these steps, the hiring team must undergo some final steps to come to a final hiring decision. These steps are also included in the hiring decision process and help the company to select the best candidate for the job finally.  

How to make the final hiring decision?

Once the interviews and assessments are done, it is time to deliberate on the candidate’s performance and thus select the best candidate for the job opening. So, some of the steps that are involved in making the final hiring decision are:

  • Check all the criteria that the candidate meets before hiring: Make sure there is a common matrix for assessing all the candidates on the list of the same factors. Make a checklist of all the criteria and assess all the candidates on them. Some of the factors can be: the amount of experience required, number of skills, how quickly can the person learn without supervision, amount of training required, achievements and many more.
  • Doing the background checks before making the final offer: Doing a background check provides the clarity required for hiring the person for good. Background checks can clear up any last-minute confusions that the recruiter might have.
  • Get all the stakeholders on the same page: Make sure all the decision-makers involved in the hiring process are on the same page and thus choose the candidate unanimously.
  • Extend the job offer to the selected candidate: The offer letter must include salary, benefits, responsibilities, start date, conditions of employment, work schedule, remote working and many more. Some of the terms are negotiable, and some are not.
  • Hiring the employee: The candidate is finally hired, and all the paperwork needs to be filled and sent to the firm.
  • Onboarding: It lays the groundwork for any employee, and the company needs to make sure that this is a welcoming one. This makes sure that the employee has a clear idea about the responsibilities that are expected from the new hire.

So, by having the correct hiring process, the problem of Shortage of applicants can be reduced. Having a proper decision process in place not only helps the company to plan out their recruitment drive but also helps in saving on last-minute resources. 

Looking ahead: The future of hiring in coming years!

Hiring is the only way to incorporate new talent into the organization. New hires bring fresh perspectives and ideas and thus give a new direction to the firm and help the firm in achieving its long-term goals. So, right hiring is adeptly one of the most crucial decisions for the firm as one wrong hire, and team dynamics goes bananas! And the amount a wrong hire costs a company is something else entirely. So, talent acquisition is a strategic decision that must be carefully planned out and executed to make the most of the resources. As times are changing, so are the needs of the firms and the ways to acquire them. So, new talent acquisition strategies are in play in the market, and how this affects the hiring process in the future, we shall discuss this in this article.

What is talent acquisition?

As the term suggests, talent acquisition means searching, identifying and acquiring the right talent according to the needs of the firm. Most of the firms have a talent acquisition team who looks after the entire process of developing skill. They do everything from searching, identifying, assessing, acquiring and hiring candidates so that the candidates are the perfect fit for the firm. In most firms, the HR team is the one looking after the entire process, but many times they have a special department dedicated to this, and they work in tandem with the HR department to get satisfactory results.

A talent acquisition personnel must have strong communication and interpersonal skills that help them in dealing with so many candidates. Their skillset must include sourcing strategies, assessment skills, candidate assessment, compliance-driven hiring standards, and awareness about trends in hiring and best corporate hiring practices. They must be highly motivated who are result driven go-getters.

What is the importance of talent acquisition for a firm?

For any firm, people are the building blocks and thus, having a strong foundation matters the most. So, talent acquisition is one of the most important concerns of any firm. So, its importance includes:

  • Hiring the right people who are the best fit for the company: Finding the right talent rather than finding quick talent is the main motive of the talent acquisition team. Hiring the right talent means a lower retention rate and thus is beneficial for the firm.
  • A means to stay competitive in this war of talents: Acquiring the right talent adds value to the firm and provides an edge to the firm by continuously innovating. Eliminating risk and motivating the fellow workforce, the right hire helps the firm in staying competitive.
  • Helps in saving time and thus making it cost-effective: Hiring the right talent once and retaining it for a more extended period of times saves time than hiring new talents for each position again and again! So, think wisely, acquire strategically! Be future-ready with all your hires.

What is the talent acquisition process?

Talent acquisition is an elaborate process that starts at the time when a job opening is hired in the company to the time someone is employed for the role. So, let’s take a deeper dive into understanding the process.

Step 1: Sourcing and Lead Generation

Starting with releasing a job opening and a job description, the talent acquisition team scouts social media, seminars, forums, conferences and many more to expand their applicant pool in search of the perfect candidate for the role. Having a large number of potential hires makes the process even more challenging and satisfying.

Step 2: Attracting top candidates

Having a strong brand value, promoting the company’s work culture and a comprehensive compensation package are the key ways to attract and retain top talents for the firm.

Step 3: Interview and Assessment

Recognizing the top skills required for the job position and interviewing the suitable candidates based on them to assess the candidates on an ordinary parameter.

Step 4: Checking the references

Cross-checking the references gives an absolutely clear idea about the candidate and also helps to clear certain last-moment doubts thereby making the acquirer ready to roll out offers.

Step 5: Selection of the most suited candidates

Based on interviews and assessments, make the final selection of the candidates who are the best fit for the job and the company.

Step 6: Hiring and onboarding

Hiring the right talent and giving them proper onboarding is the final test that can make or break an employee. So, the onboarding process is the last and the most crucial step.

What are some of the talent acquisition strategies?

As the importance of talent acquisition is well-known by now, so some of the important talent acquisition strategies that the firm must deploy are:

  • Have strategic workforce planning in place: Having workforce planning in force means having a proactive approach towards talent acquisition. Having a predefined plan means that the firm is well aware of its needs and can divert its resources in the actual acquisition of talent rather than in planning.
  • Building a positive and happy work culture: A corporate culture is an embodiment of a company’s values, beliefs, symbols, rituals. Positive work culture is something that every candidate desires so, build a culture that encloses the core values of the company and makes every individual feel included.
  • Make the firm a strong brand and cash in on it: Employer brand conveys how strong a company is and what kind of workforce the company has. So, make sure that the firm has a well-defined brand and is communicated to all the stakeholders for faster identification.
  • Use data analytics to be on top of the game: Use data to forecast the candidates required, have an efficient applicant tracking system (ATS), clear metrics to judge candidates upon and align the business goals with the acquisition strategy.
  • Expand outsourcing of clients: Having an elaborate reach so that different kinds of talents can be reached differently. Use different kinds of media, academic programs, seminars, forums to reach a wider pool to choose from.
  • Search for talented candidates: Different job roles have different requirements. So, hire candidates that can be easily trained for different skills and show an interest in the kind of work. Hiring a talented candidate is easier than hiring an experienced one as he/she might be rigid in the way of working.
  • Collaborative hiring: This trend is on the rise as many departments work side by side to hire professionals as it is both cost-effective and improves the quality of hire thereby reducing the turnover rates.

How can talent acquisition strategy be aligned with the business strategy?

The key to organizational performance lies at the intersection of talent strategy and business strategy. The alignment requires an analysis of the firm’s objectives, strategic and operational goals. As employees play the most important role in all these objectives, they are the key to achieve these business goals, so hiring the correct talent that helps in the fulfilment of plans is an absolute must!

Building a strategic plan of hiring according to the business goals so that they have the perfect relation between them right from the start is the correct way to go ahead. Having a good mix of external hire with the internal employees to have a balanced approach and perspectives towards business problems is also essential. Hiring talents equipped with ever-changing technologies that can help the company be in the competitor’s race is also required.

So, having a well-defined plan in place can go to great lengths in helping the firm acquiring the right talent. Talent acquisition works for the fulfilment of both short-term and long-term goals of the companies and thus plays a crucial part and must be treated with utmost importance.

How to Prevent and Handle Non-Paying Clients

Everyone expects to be paid for the services that they provide, whether in money or in-kind or by the method as described in the contract. Every business has some clients or customers who won’t play by the rules. The odd ones, who always make the job difficult. The ones who make the payments late or even better won’t pay at all! How disrespectful is that? This is a common problem that most firms face. It is a classic never-ending loop! One of the biggest problems faced by the financial department of many organizations. Handling these complaints is a messy job, and these late and non-payments have a serious impact on the running of firms. There can be many ways to deal with such non-paying clients that we will discuss in detail going forward.

What are non-paying clients?

Well, as the name suggests, a non-paying client is a client that refuses to pay his/her outstanding amount owed to the firm even after multiple reminders sent to them. These are the people who won’t pay their long-overdue invoices even after multiple efforts by the firm to reach them either by calling, emailing, or even reaching their place. If even after so many efforts, the individual is not ready to surrender the amount owed, then the company can take various extreme steps to get their payments like hiring a collection agency, going to a lawyer for seeking legal help by filing a lawsuit and many more.

How to handle non-paying clients?

There are many soft options that the firms can apply if a non-paying client comes on their radar. These are the steps that generally do not involve help from the legal department and can be tried by the firm itself. So, some of these hacks to try on are:

  • Draw up a contract and state clear due dates: To avoid any confusion, there must be a legal contract in place with all the important details like when the payment is expected, the terms and conditions of the services, and the timeline for the completion of the work. The date of payment must be in bold, clear and simple language, and the client must be well aware of it. Every legal contract must have the following inclusions:
1. Contact informationEmail ids, addresses, phone numbers of both parties  must be included in the contract for transparency.

2. Revisions: If the nature of the work is as such that it requires constant revisions, so the limit to the number of revisions must be included in the contract.

3. Deadlines: The start date, the end date, the delivery date, specific milestones- all of these must be mentioned for any project in the contract.

4. Intellectual property: It protects the clients from any copyright issues as well as allows the firm to include the project in their list of works.

5. Exit Clause: One of the most critical section, where the grounds of termination of the project are mentioned if anyone (the client or the firm) decided to back down from the project.

6. Financial terms: The most important section, which safeguards the firm from defaults in payment. So, the late fee charged, money-back guarantees, discounts, partial up-front payments are all mentioned in detail in this section.    

  • Add on the late fees to the already uncleared dues: Directly threatening someone with consequences can have a reverse impact on the client, and they may further refuse to pay the dues. While some of the candidates may have a genuine reason for not paying, levying a late fee might tempt them to pay at the earliest if they do not want to face even harsher consequences.
  • Polite reminders: Send reminder mails to the client as soon the due date is over, to make the client aware that the due date is over, keep the tone professional, re-emphasize the amount to be paid, the modes by which the payment can be made, the payment due date and any late fees added to the payment model.
  • Call up the client: Reaching the customer through the phone is the next step. Here also, try and be professional and polite and ask the client of the reasons for not being able to pay on time and try to devise a solution together. Try to get the client to agree on a future date by which the payment can be made.
  • Confront the client directly: The next step involves going directly to the client and having a talk face-to-face so that the matter can be resolved most efficiently. Try to reach a mutually decided date of payment from the client.
  • Offer lucrative payment methods: Offering options such as payments in instalments by charging some nominal fees can be provided to the client so that the strain to pay such a huge amount can be eased on them.
  • Stop any future services to the client: This is a smart option in which the firm stops providing any service to the non-paying client till they pay their dues. In doing so, they further save their own time and money by wasting them on a non-paying source.
  • Hire a collection agency: Now is the time to go to a third party if the client still hasn’t coughed up the money yet. Usually, collection agencies charge a huge amount of fees, up to the extent of 50 per cent of the collected amount, so pre-analysis must be done if the entire process is worth it or not.
  • Time to take out the big guns!

Can legal actions be taken against non-paying clients, and if yes, what can be done?

Even after so much pestering and reminders is the client is not ready to pay the dues owed to the firm, then the company has no other options but to resort to legal help. The legal contract that the firm draws up before the beginning of the project gives the firm the right to resort to legal means if the client fails to pay its dues. If the amount due is significant, then hiring an attorney or taking the clients to a small claims account or filing a lawsuit in the civil trial court will be a viable option. So, YES! Legal actions can be taken against non-paying clients.

  • Send a demand for a payment letter: Before filing a lawsuit, a formal demand letter has to be sent to the client, which includes the reason for the client being in default, how much is the firm owed, demand for the payment by the specific date and warning for a lawsuit.
  • Let the attorney do the talking: Get an attorney involved and seek his/her help on how to proceed further. A lawyer can give great advice on how to handle these kinds of sticky situation. Lawyers will also advise on where can the lawsuit be filed based on the specifics of the situation. Threatening the client with a lawsuit is generally scary enough for the client to pay back their dues.
  • Going to a small claims court: Going ahead with the lawsuit, the first thing that needs to be decided is which court to go to. Small Claims court is generally the least expensive one, the least time consuming one and the best option. Most of the firms seeking to collect their debts go to the small claims court to take its help. Here, the process of dealing is simple enough, so most firms do not need to hire a legal attorney. There is a limit on the debt amount, which can be settled in the small claims court, which ranges from $2500 to $25000. If the client does not show up, then the firm wins the case by default or in case of a hearing. The result comes out on the same day.
  • A Civil lawsuit: If the debt amount is larger than the limit prescribed by the small claims amount or the case is a complex one, then the firm can lodge a lawsuit in the civil court. These cases might last for several days and are more formal ones. The firm might also require to hire a lawyer to represent it in the civil court. The court fees, lawyer’s fees, the amount of time spent to get a ruling all of these factors must be taken into account before filing a civil lawsuit.
  • Arbitration: Instead of filing a lawsuit, arbitration is a quick and easy way to get the payment from the client. It is overseen by an arbitrator and is much less formal, and the arbitrator’s judgement can be enforced like that of a judge.

A non-paying client is an unnecessary burden that most businesses have to bear. Taking legal actions against them can be taxing, costly and time-consuming. So, the best way to deal with them is to prevent having non-paying customers by doing a thorough background check before entering into any project with them. Dealing with non-paying clients is a difficult process, but it is a part and a parcel of running a business and hence, has to be handled tactfully.

Job Hopping: The necessary evil!

A common trend where employees leave their previous firms for better job roles, better exposure, better pay and various other reasons. This trend is nothing new, and thus job satisfaction for employees is such a big concern for the firm for retention of their clients. How frequently an employee must change the job has been a debatable topic for quite some time, but job-hopping has both pros and cons. Global competition has increased the hunger in every working individual, and no one wants to stay at one place for long in fear of missing out. Job hopping also poses a lot of questions during the interviews, which need to be answered tactically. A comprehensive guide to job-hopping is discussed here. Let us have a look.

What is job-hopping?

Staying at a particular job for a specific organization for 1-2 years, though some may even last as long as 5 years, and switching to new jobs frequently is called job-hopping. Moving from one company to another is what job-hopping means. Though viewed with a negative connotation traditionally as a job hopper was supposed to lack loyalty for a firm, its implications in the current world have changed. Doing a part-time job or temporary work at a firm and then switching to new roles also comes under job-hopping, and companies have become quite okay with that and some also prefer a moving workforce.

What are the reasons due to which employees go for job-hopping?

Job hopping may be a solution to many problems. So, some of the issues which are solved by job-hopping are:

  • Job dissatisfaction: When an employee is not satisfied with the kind of work he is doing or with the future of the job role, they tend to start looking for other opportunities.
  • Boredom: Many employees want a job that challenges them, and as soon as the challenging part gets over, they lose interest in the job and start looking outside.
  • Poached: Good employees often get poached by other competitors, and thus, employee retention remains a massive task for the firm.
  • Diverse experience: Many people want to gain exposure in different fields and thus cannot stay in a single job role for such a huge amount of time.
  • Better offer: Many employees may get a better profile or better pay than their previous job and thus chase those offers.

What are the benefits of job-hopping?

Job hopping has many advantages other than just a new CV pointer. Some of these benefits are tangible while others are intangible, but they are of great importance for both the employees and the employer. So, the benefits of job-hopping are:

  • Learning a diverse skillset: A job hopper is the culmination of all the skills that he/she learns on the multiple job roles that the person goes through. An employee who can handle the end-to-end process by himself, owning a diverse range of skill sets, is someone who every company looks for hiring and thus stands a better chance at employment.
  • Soft skills enhancement: Communication and adaptability are something that a job hopper becomes proficient at. Changing job roles and environment makes the person adaptable, and building new relations with people in different teams and firms gives a person strong communication skills and a good network of accomplices.
  • Increased pay: Job hoppers experience a better hike in their salaries as compared to the employees who stay in the same job for a longer period.

What are the drawbacks of job-hopping?

Having a stigma attached to it historically, job-hopping has its cons. So, some of them are:

  • Losing out on gains: A job hopper never stays in any firm for a long period to gain the additional benefits. They always have to start over and thus never get the time to establish themselves. So, job hoppers lose on retirement income, employer’s contribution and other additional benefits that the firm provides only when the employee has served for a minimum amount of time.
  • The stigma attached to it: Job hoppers were looked upon as disloyal and those who do not stay at one place for long, so employers do not want to waste a huge number of resources on them. Losing of trust from the employer side is one of the worst things to happen to an employee, which can lead to early termination of the employee.
  • Job-hopping syndrome: A common syndrome that frequent job hoppers develop, where they are never satisfied with wherever they land and thus always remain dissatisfied with the kind of work they do in search of something better. So, they are stuck in an endless loop of finding the perfect job in the next switch!

How frequently should one switch a job?

As is said, too much of anything is bad! So, job-hopping when required is a good step, but doing it too frequently can cost you much more than doing you any good. Switching 5 jobs in 5 years is a terrifying deal as most of the recruiters won’t even want to talk to you as you ooze the trait of instability! Sticking to any job life-long is not an option in today’s time, so job hopping must be done, but it must be done strategically! In the early years of your career, job-hopping a bit is understandable as you are trying to explore different career paths, but after that, becoming stable is advisable. So, sticking to any firm for a minimum of 2-3 years is a good period before considering a switch. Switching jobs every year is not an advisable decision and must be avoided if you don’t want to achieve the tag of a job-hopper!

How to do job hopping correctly?

Anyone has to be sure of certain things before job-hopping, and then only it can be done in the right way. So, the correct way to go into job-hopping is:

  • Be sure of what it is to be gained while switching: Make sure that with the job switch, new skills are being learnt, and you are moving up in your career ladder. Only then consider the switch. Do not do it just for a better salary.
  • Do not hop jobs too soon: Recruiters do not like talking to people who show too frequent job changes in their resumes unless they have some exceptional skills. So, spend at least a year or more in each firm where you work.
  • Do not leave the previous firm on bad terms: Be sure to tell your previous corporation well in advance about your intentions, and do not leave the firm on bad terms. Be cordial and accept that the journey there has come to an end and maintain good relations with your previous manager so that if your potential boss calls up your ex-boss, he/she will only have good things to say about you!

How can job hopping in your resume be explained during an interview?

Explaining small spans of work to the recruiter can be quite challenging for the job hopper. So, the best way to deal with this kind of question is to be honest with the interviewer. Showcasing how the varied range of skills gained during the short tenures can be useful for the potential job role is also a good way of dealing with this question. Show the potential employer that you are the best at your job and no one else can provide results better than you, and then you stand a chance in front of the interviewer. 

Grouping similar roles together and thus laying out different profiles chronologically can also help explain the different stints performed at different firms. Saying that the job-hopping was intentional and planned out according to your goals for life can portray that you have everything planned out and are not vague. Thus, confidence is the key! Own everything that you did and explain everything clearly, this will make the interviewer have trust in what you say, and thus you can explain your resume.

Job hopping is evolving from the stigma that was formed around its years ago, but still doing it pretty often is not taken in a good light. Doing it only when necessary is the way to go about it. Prepare a solid answer to explain the hopping if you have many, and prepare to showcase your talents to put you in a good light. Job hopping is the necessary evil in today’s world. One cannot live with too much of it and cannot live without it.

Top 10 Recruitment/ATS Softwares

Historically, recruiting has been an extremely laborious and tiring task for the hiring team of any firm. With huge amounts of data and endless sheets of information, manual hiring was a tedious process. Hours spent on the recruitment process, and if the right talent is not hired, the entire hard work went to waste. To tackle these problems in the recruitment process, in today’s world, where every process is automated with the least amount of human intervention, is the recruitment process. With everything made easy with technology, the recruitment process has also been simpler so that the best candidates can be hired for the organization. The company’s growth and productivity can be enhanced. Let’s have a look at the top 10 recruitment software of 2021. 

What is recruitment software?

Recruitment software is something that makes the entire hiring process automated. Starting from posting the vacancy for a job online, making job descriptions, shortlisting the candidates, taking interviews, selecting the final candidates, and the onboarding process of the new hires, recruitment software helps it all! It is used by firms of all sizes, whether big or small, to make their recruitment process a smooth flow and interact with many applicants.

Recruitment software makes the hiring process easier, less time-consuming and automated. The huge number of emails, notifications can be sent to all the candidates at once and thus helps in selecting the perfect fit for the organization. It makes the work easier for the recruiting team.

What is Applicant Tracking System (ATS)?

ATS provides recruitment and hiring tools for various organizations. ATS collects thousands of resumes from various job applicants all around the world and sorts them. Most of the companies, be it small or large, use these ATS to sort out resumes and thus provide the list of the candidates best fit for the firm according to the organisation’s needs. These systems highlight the top candidates and help hire professionals and make the correct fit between the job seeker and the employer. Most of the recruitment software has an ATS embedded in them, and applicant tracking forms a part of the recruitment process.

What are the benefits of using recruitment software or ATS?

A recruitment software provides many benefits for the recruitment team. Some of them are:

  • It reduces the time consumption in the hiring process and thus makes the process easier.
  • It increases the productivity of the recruiter.
  • Enhances the communication done within the recruitment team and also with the applicants.
  • Allows the company to hire a good fit for the organization.
  • The in-built analytics feature helps in the critical decision making of the team.

Which is the TOP 10 recruitment/ATS software of 2021?

There are many recruitment/ATS software available in the market. Many follow a basic code, while many provide customization according to the client’s needs and demands. Almost every one of them has a predefined method that is followed whenever the hiring process starts. Encapsulation of AI and machine learning has automated all the steps and thus reduced the firms’ workload. But some of them are better than others, and thus based on reviews, usefulness, the number of features provided, and popularity, we have curated a list of the Top 10 online recruitment software. So, here they are:

1.   Zigsaw Consultancy: An emerging recruitment/ATS, where job vacancies according to different domains and locations can be searched, and communication can occur. Zigsaw is the preferred hiring partner for many firms. Rated a solid 5 star on Facebook and 4.8 on google, Zigsaw makes the hiring process a lot easier. With three dedicated plans to help HRs in their hiring needs, Zigsaw has a clear path in front of it, to be every firm’s HR partner.

Features: Candidate sourcing, screening, Interview coordination and management, Database management

Price: 3 models, free model with no cost, rent-a-recruiter model with Rs 15000 per month fixed and Rs 5000 per hire variable and a dedicated hire plan costing 15% of the annual CTC of the selected person (plus GST).

2.   BambooHR: A leading recruitment/ATS software for small and medium enterprises. It has a cloud-based system where data management is easier due to personalized human resources information system (HRIS). It has an applicant tracking system and also provides customizable offer letter templates.

Features: Pre Boarding and onboarding facilities, Job requisition, CRM.

Price: Quotation-based for different firms.

3.   Zoho Recruit: A powerful recruitment/ATS software streamlines the hiring process due to a cutting edge applicant tracking system. Tracking of resumes and efficient interviews, Zoho does it all. It is an all-in-one package used by corporate HRs, hiring agencies as it provides background screening, reference checking, self-service portals.

Features: CRM, Internal HR, assessments, Interaction tracking, Interview management, Onboarding, Resume Parsing, Job requisition

Price: Free trial with two modes of pricing, standard at Rs 1500 per month per

recruiter and enterprise with Rs 3000 per month per recruiter.

4. icIMS Recruit: It has market-leading technologies that help the team manage resumes and the recruitment process. It provides customizable job advertisements, searching for suitable candidates through the in-built features. It also uses social media, thus making it easier to connect the recruiters with applicants. They make their online presence felt so that employees can be seen and can be hired.

Features: Background screening, Internal HR, Self Service Portal, Onboarding, Job board posting, CRM, Reference checking, Interview management, assessments

Price: No pricing available on the site.

5.   SmartRecruiters: High-performance firms use it to hire the best talents. It is built on a cloud platform and has a function for collaborative hiring. More than 4000 companies use this for their recruitment needs. It also has more than 400 vendors on its platform.

Features: Self-service portal, CRM, interview management, background management, resume parsing, Internal HR, Job board posting.

Price: Quotation-based for different firms.

6.   Workable: It has streamlined the hiring process for more than 6000 companies. It has a system that manages candidates’ profiles, matches them with the job requirements, manages interviews, and charters a scoreboard for every individual. It shares job vacancies to more than 200 sites at once and thus makes the process very fast.

Features: Job board posting, interview scheduling, recruitment firms, reference checking, resume parsing, internal HR, background screening

Price: Quotation-based for different firms.

7.   Greenhouse: It is one of the fastest-growing recruitment/ATS software. Thousands of companies already use this for their hiring processes. It conducts top-class interaction with every candidate and takes care of diversity while hiring for the firm. It automates tasks, improves the team’s efficiency by collaborating work and designing the perfect tech stack.

Features: Job posting, Hiring process tracking, Evaluation of candidates, onboarding, assessment

Price: Quotation-based for different firms.

8.   Lever: It is a platform used by all the big firms and has more than 2500 clients. It has a powerful applicant tracking system, viewing candidate profiles and schedule interviews effortlessly. It can be used for small to medium to large firms, and it delivers results according to the needs and requirements.

Features: Interview management, resume parsing, self-service, CRM, internal HR, database management, reporting, sourcing automation

Price: Quotation-based for different firms.

9.   Jobvite: It is useful for small, medium and large enterprises. It incorporates AI and thus provides cost-effective solutions for all the hiring needs. It provides an applicant tracking system and critical decision-making features through analytics and mobile-optimized career sites.

Features: Onboarding, applicant tracking, advanced analytics, job broadcasting, sourcing, onboarding, CRM

Price: Quotation-based for different firms.

10.  Manatel: The next generation recruitment software with the latest technologies with AI helps in sourcing to onboarding and even beyond that. A cloud-based platform that provides features like remote management of the team, a collaboration of the team, reporting tools and compliance tools.

Features: Background screening, CRM, onboarding, interview management, job posting, recruitment firms, resume parsing

Price: 3 plans, professional for USD 15 per user per month, enterprise plan for USD 35 per user per month and customized pricing models.

These are some of the widely used recruitment software which makes the life of HRs a bit easier. They make the process streamlined and ensure that the best talent gets hired by the firm.

Is there any need for an HR person for a startup?

Startups have a flexible culture. Startups with their ambitions of making it big in the world generally administer executives with dual roles of managing people at the nascent stage with 5-10 people. As soon as the workforce starts to grow, managing the workforce becomes quite a task and who other than HR can manage them. Recruiting, onboarding, background checks and employee woes – for all these problems, HR is the person to go to! The importance of HR in a startup increases manifold as they are responsible for making the workforce up from scratch and thus have to make sure that they hire correct people who will give their all for the firm and help it grow.   

When should a startup hire its first HR personnel?

Hiring the first HR for any startup is a very crucial decision. It will set the scene for how the HR department will function in the firm. The HR will take crucial decisions with the firm’s senior-most people and decide on policies, the culture of the workplace and the environment that they want to set for the workforce and will live on with the firm for years to come. Thus, hiring the first HR in any startup is a strategic decision that must be well thought off and carefully executed.

For hiring the first 10-15 people of the startup, HR is not necessary. Since, during this stage, the founder is the person handling all the decisions, he/she might want to hire people similar to his temperament and values. So, the first few hires need to be done by the founding members themselves. During this stage, HR’s policy of hiring may or may not coincide with that of the founder’s, and this is the difference of opinion that the company should not deal with at this nascent stage. But varied opinions and depending upon the kind of startup it is, the first HR should be hired once the firm hits 25-40 employees, as managing this workforce smoothly requires an HR.

What is the importance of HR in a startup?

The importance of HR in a startup are manifold. Let us have a look at that:

  • Development of a good culture and healthy work environment: Creating a positive workspace right from the beginning is one of the most important factors for attracting and retaining the right talent. Good work culture is desired by every employee and fostering it right from the beginning, where the employees can have frequent interactions with the HR and thus can share their problems, is a good practice to follow right from the start.
  • Development of the firm’s VMO statement and policies: Every firm, whether big or small, has a specific vision, mission and objectives statements, which makes the entire workforce aligned to a specific goal that they need to work upon. HR plays an indispensable part in formulating the VMO and the rules and compliances which needs to be adhered to by every employee of the startup.  
  • Looking after all the regulatory and compliance requirements of the startup: Every country has its labour laws that must be complied with if the firm wants to avoid any legal hassles. The founder might not be well-versed with all these, so an expert on the subject matter of hiring, work laws, firing and legal frameworks must look after these and here, none other than HR comes to the rescue. Thus, HR protects the firm from facing any lawsuits even before its inception.
  • Hiring and retaining candidates that align with the startup’s ideologies: Starting your business with the right kind of people makes the foundation of the startup strong. So, no mistakes should be made during initial hiring as the employees make up the culture as they increase in size. Retaining the right people will give an edge to the firm and will help the startup to move in the right direction and achieve goals faster.
  • To create inclusive job titles and conduct well-structured interviews: Creating clearly explained job descriptions would entice the correct candidates to apply, and thus the hiring process can run smoothly. Every startup looks for a diverse set of employees who can help the firm in every situation that arises. So, hiring the right set of people for a startup is a must. So, having a well-structured interview process can help examine the candidates correctly on the skills required and thus help judge them accordingly.
  • Formulate appraisals and compensation structure for the workforce: Having a fair compensation structure, which is well researched and matches the industry’s standards, is a must for building a stronghold on the employees. The HR does this job efficiently and also makes sure that the startup does not make mistakes like the gender pay gap. Thus, making sure that the employees have a “fair” pay structure and the firm is not on the way to a lawsuit, and HR does its job to perfection.
  • Develop proper training schedules for the workforce: In the initial phase of any startup, it is filled with generalists as they can don multiple hats and can work efficiently in cross-domain projects. But as the firm grows, these generalists need to move on to specific management roles, and without having the proper training and experience, they can fail miserably at their task, which can be a huge drawback for the firm. So, having good managers has a direct impact on the firm’s performance, and thus the HR must churn out good quality managers.
  • Help the employees to have specific career paths right from the beginning: As soon as the employee strength starts reaching 30, it is imperative for the firm to have a critical approach regarding its employees’ career paths, so that there is least attrition rate and employees can work in the correct direction of their career paths. HR provides career pathing programs that help the employees in ensuring that they are taking the right decision. 

As discussed above, an HR’s role in a startup is multi-fold. Having a good HR team since the beginning of a startup can help build a great culture, hire and retain talents required by the firm and thus can set a positive tone in notion for the firm. As the workforce makes the backbone of any firm, so it is mandatory to have the authority in place that manages the workforce, i.e., the HR. Although investing in HRs can seem a huge investment right from the beginning, it is sure to reap benefits in the future and save a lot of time for the founder.

Can HR managers become the CEO of a company?

A debatable topic, but the end answer remains that YES! An HR can become the CEO of any firm. With an equal number of responsibilities, even more than their other counterparts, the HR can indeed utilise his/her skills and networking abilities with a maximum number of employees to play to their advantage and handle the company like a boss! They do have the right set of people management and leadership skills to be the leader everyone desires and thus can do justice to the responsibility of a CEO. Though HRs have been denied this opportunity for quite a long time, they have always wanted an opportunity to prove their mettle, and things have slowly started changing for the better. Things have finally started looking rosy for the HR professionals, and some companies have their HR professionals as their CEOs.

Why can HR professionals become the CEOs of the organisation?

According to the research carried out by the world-renowned researcher Dave Ulrich, CEOs in the future will have a strong sense of workplace culture and will have excellent people skills. Who other than HRs excel in this domain? Also, according to the research, it has been concluded that the personality type of Chief Human Resource Officers (CHROs) is much more similar to the CEOs than any other CXOs. They also have similar responses in stressful situations and have similar kinds of leadership styles. This has been an obvious result as HRs have been people with excellent soft skills and a great rapport with the workforce.

Apart from excellent communication skills, CEOs also must have a deep understanding of the day-to-day working of the official business. This requires a strategic mindset and complex data analysis skills. Up until recently, these skill sets were considered outside of HR’s purview. But due to changing needs and requirements, HRs too have become adept in strategic planning of the bottom-line workers and thus provide valuable insights in matters concerning the firm. They too have become proficient in these kinds of decision making, and CXOs have recognised the importance of the workforce as the important resource that the firm has.

Why should leading people be a responsibility and not a reward?

Leading people is a responsibility that requires training and should not be considered a reward to be cherished. It should be considered as the responsibility to be fulfilled. The training must include the most important part of any firm – its people and who other than HRs can manage the reins of the workforce? Any CEO who values its workforce can avoid problems like poor execution due to less engaged people, troubling employee behaviour and loss of company’s clients. Thus, HRs becoming CEOs can enhance returns to the firm by making people feel more included.

Why are HRs the best choice for CEO during this growing trend of Mergers and Acquisitions?

In this ever-growing trend of Mergers and Acquisitions, working with people of different ideologies towards the same goal is a herculean task. In these challenging situations, CEOs need to make sure that there is a correct fit between the workforce coming together from different organisations, have the same goals, work in harmony and thus increase returns to the firm. So, HRs as CEOs here, can gauge the situation at the deepest level and make sure a smooth transition takes place and no employee fatigue sets in.

Who is responsible for converting the firm to an agile organisation?

In today’s overly competitive world, faster decision-making abilities combined with the use of cutting-edge technology is the solution to always be on top. Making the firm agile, by rendering more people responsible for taking decisions on their own and failing and learning from their mistakes, thus giving people the autonomy to behave promotes innovation in any firm. Thus, creating such kind of a safe psychological environment for the workforce helps in making the firm agile faster, and HRs who are adept in dealing with people and work environment will make a great CEO.

What is the key trait that any CEO must harbour?

The answer to this question is “CONFIDENCE”. Confidence is the key that will help any CEO to ace the game and thus outshine on a macro level. Other CXOs might have varying levels of confidence as they mostly work with people of their domain, but HRs have a great command over it. Working closely with the entire workforce, dealing with their issues, they have the talent and the confidence to get work done and thus motivate people positively.

How important is building trust both internally and externally within a firm?

HRs as CEOs will do a great job in building trust both internally and externally within the firm. Research proves that most of the employees have no trust in their leaders, and thus they tend to leave the firm in the long run. So, they need to have a person who networks efficiently with all the employees in the organisation and HR’s job description has this skill in bold! Thus, they have a great potential for being the CEO of the firm.

Try something new, Be Unique!

Historically, CEOs have been their organisation’s financial expert or the marketing lord, but what if firms do things differently for once? CEOs are not only the people who have a clear understanding of the processes and financial expertise but those who can work for the people and with the people to help the firm in achieving its goals.  

As already discussed above, there are many advantages of making HR the CEO of a firm. HR is the person who knows the firm inside out, has a great rapport with people, is adept at making strategic decisions as and when the time arises and thus creates a happy workplace for the employees. Choosing a leader who can work with the team and for the team will help the firm to achieve its goals smoothly. Bringing in a fresh perspective from the internal organisation’s viewpoint, HR can bring new ideas and thus remove the stagnancy built over the years. So, what do you think? Can HRs become the CEO of a company?

Why use recruitment agencies?

In this overly competitive world, where every day is a race against time, finding a job has become a whole lot tougher. Having the right kind of guidance and support during job search can be beneficial, and it also guides the candidate to go in the right direction. Employers use recruitment agencies to help them in hiring a potential candidate for any specific job opening. So, being in touch with recruitment agencies can help the candidate and the firm connect and understand each other’s needs and requirements and be beneficial for both of them.

What is a recruitment agency?

So, let us start with understanding what exactly a recruitment agency is? Do not confuse between a recruitment agency and an employment agency! This is a common mistake done by many potential job seekers. Though they are almost the same thing, recruitment agencies serve the employers while employment agencies help the job seekers. Firms generally hire recruitment agencies to help them identify the potential candidates for a job vacancy and thus ensure that there is a perfect fit between the candidate, the job role and the firm. They directly work in the interest of the companies to offer the best candidates for their job openings.

A recruitment agency will always be on the lookout for suitable candidates. Their main line of work after getting an intimation from the company that it is looking for a candidate includes optimizing the CVs of all the candidates enrolled with them and then shortlisting the best CVs according to the role. After shortlisting the candidates, they provide a comprehensive guide on how to prepare for the process and thus ace it. The primary role of recruitment agencies is to make the entire hiring process a streamlined one and thus providing the perfect candidate to the firm for an opening.

What are some of the different kinds of job positions that can be filled by recruitment agencies?

There are different kinds of job positions that a company might open, and so different kinds of candidates are required for those kinds of roles. So, some of the major types of jobs that a recruitment agency can help fill are:

  • Temporary: Here, the project has a specific starting date, and end date and the candidate is hired only for a specific assignment and not as a permanent hire. Some job roles that fall in temporary hire are labour workers in warehouses, manufacturing plants etc.
  • Temp to hire: Here, the candidates are generally hired by the firm as a temporary hire, but after the employer gauges the abilities of the employee, they can make the employee permanent. The most common type of job position filled by the recruitment agencies which includes the work of a sales representative, delivery persons, operators etc.
  • Direct Hire: Here, the recruitment agencies act as the recruiter for the firm and hire permanent, full-time employees for the organization, thereby saving the firm’s cost and labour. Any job roles of the permanent kind are included in this category.

How do recruitment agencies work?

Hiring any candidate is a tiresome job that includes a huge amount of hard work and labour, and market scouting. Recruitment agencies exist to ease this load off the firms. There may exist many specialized recruitment agencies, but their core working process remains the same.

  1. The first and foremost step includes getting an intimation from various firms that they have a job opening and are looking to hire from outside to fill up that position.
  2. The first and foremost step includes getting an intimation from various firms that they have a job opening and are looking to hire from outside to fill up that position.
  3. The first and foremost step includes getting an intimation from various firms that they have a job opening and are looking to hire from outside to fill up that position.
  4. The first and foremost step includes getting an intimation from various firms that they have a job opening and are looking to hire from outside to fill up that position.
  5. The first and foremost step includes getting an intimation from various firms that they have a job opening and are looking to hire from outside to fill up that position.
  6. The first and foremost step includes getting an intimation from various firms that they have a job opening and are looking to hire from outside to fill up that position.
  7. The first and foremost step includes getting an intimation from various firms that they have a job opening and are looking to hire from outside to fill up that position.

Why should employers use a recruitment agency for their hiring process?

A recruitment agency provides lots of benefits to the employer as well as the employee. So, some of its benefits are:

  • Top-quality candidates: Hiring candidates through recruitment agencies will always give access to high-quality candidates as they are highly scrutinized, interviewed and polished by the recruitment agencies before they are sent to the companies for hiring. The candidates are also the right fit for the role, so the process of hiring also becomes easier.
  • Client-focused approach: Many recruitment agencies have a policy that if the firm hires no candidate, then they charge no money from the employer. So, they focus on doing their job to the best of their abilities to provide the firm with the kind of candidate that they are looking for.
  • Universal reach: Not all job seekers are enrolled within any recruitment agencies. So, connecting with those candidates, optimizing their CVs and gauging their abilities is something that recruitment agencies are good at, and thus they have a universal reach for all the clients.
  • Market knowledge: Being in this field day in and day out makes the recruitment agencies quite adept with all the current market trends and demands! So, they can provide insights and knowledge regarding the particular sector to both the employers and employees.
  • Speedy hiring:  A recruitment agency with its database of potential candidates and their network speed up the recruitment process. They serve as the middleman between the company and the candidate and thus reduce the time required for the hiring process.
  • Specialist recruitment knowledge: Many firms specialize in hiring candidates for a particular job role or sector. Thus, these agencies can help provide knowledge regarding the recruitment process to the company that they may lack.
  • Best at their jobs: The best reason to hire a recruitment agency is that they are best at their jobs and this is what they do! They fill the gap between the people looking for a good hire and the people wanting a job. So, it is best to leave the job to someone who knows what they are doing.

Recruitment agencies have huge benefits. They close the gap between the job seekers and the companies, thereby aiding them both. Connecting with the recruitment agencies can help reduce efforts, time and can reap great outcomes. So, yes, recruitment agencies do work, and they work better than the hiring process carried out by the firms themselves. So, if you are a firm on the lookout for a new hire or a job seeker on the job hunt, connect with a recruitment agency today!

Generalist vs Specialist; whom to choose?

An age-long debate as to which is better? A specialist -who is the master of a particular field or a generalist who is the jack of all trades but master of none! Though each has its advantages and disadvantages and can be pitted against one another, choosing one also depends on job role and requirement. Hiring the right talent is of utmost importance for a company so that they can not only address the tasks provided to them but can also overcome challenges and perform better. So, which profile is better in today’s competitive, dynamic and interconnected world? Let us have a look.

What is a generalist?

A generalist has a broad range of skill sets and is not confined to the walls of some specific knowledge. They can analyse things from a broader perspective and can look at things from various angles that a specialist cannot do. Generalist is someone who has a little knowledge about all the domains and might help you provide a balanced opinion on the issue at hand. Generalists can multitask and also work cross-functional.

What are the pros and cons of a generalist?

A generalist also has many pros and cons attributed to it. From having little idea in all domains to having no in-depth knowledge about any particular thing, a generalist harbours all these qualities.

So, some of the strengths of a generalist are:

  • Multitasker: Having a wide range of skills, a generalist can quickly put them to use and work on multiple things simultaneously. Navigating through a list of different tasks efficiently is a generalist’s forte, and this skill comes in handy in sticky situations.
  • An easy set of transferable skills: Since generalists do not have subject matter expertise on any one subject, their skills can be easily transferred to different domains and can work on diverse projects very quickly. This is the reason they are very well suited for leadership roles.
  • Navigate through uncertain situations: With the skill to face varied challenges at different times, a generalist remains calm in the face of uncertainty and can deliver efficient results when faced with one. Thus, they remain productive and can motivate other employees to follow suit.
  • Solve a broad range of issues and offers flexibility: The ability to work with different domains as and when required makes a generalist flexible. Knowing all the domains gives them the ability to solve a vast range of issues.
  • Provide alternate solutions: In a client-facing role, they can easily modify solutions based on the client’s needs and demands and provide solutions from different perspectives.

Some of the weaknesses of a generalist are:

  • Which is the key skill: Since generalists have so much knowledge to dabble with, they often lack having a key area of expertise. When the company isn’t sure about a generalist’s key potential, it becomes tricky to promote them to leadership roles.
  • Short-term skillset: Not having in-depth knowledge about any particular domain, no need arises for them to remain updated with the current trends. Thus, they possess a short term skill set that often becomes outdated.
  • Longer training times: They are easily flexible, but if a project requires them to have detailed knowledge regarding a particular domain, they take longer training sessions to deliver the detailed kind of work required.
  • Risk of losing a job: Hiring a short-term specialist rather than keeping a generalist for a more extended period seems like a viable idea from the firm’s point of view. Thus, generalists suffer from the risk of losing their jobs.

What is a specialist?

On the flip side of the coin lies the specialists. As the name suggests, they are the subject matter experts in their chosen fields. Having in-depth knowledge in a particular area is a specialist’s forte and with the trend increasing towards companies becoming more specialists, hiring a specialist seems like a better deal. In simple words, a specialist is a person who hones a particular skill and is superb at it. They focus all their energy on developing that special skill and be updated with the trends and happenings in that specific domain.

What are the pros and cons of a specialist?

Becoming the subject matter expert also comes with its own sets of advantages and disadvantages.

So, some of the pros to being a specialist are:

  • Expertise in a particular domain: Specialists may not have a range of skill set, but they specialise in one set, and they are the best at it. They are much better equipped to provide a sound solution for any issue in their area of expertise and easily handle challenges thrown at them.
  • Streamline work processes: Along with the knowledge, specialists also have a huge amount of experience of doing the same work again and again, and thus they tend to make lesser mistakes, work more efficiently and streamline their entire work process.
  • Higher salary and more dependency: Since specialist’s roles are clearly defined, firms generally have a smaller number of specialists on board, and thus they tend to charge more for the kind of work they provide, and thus the entire firm depends on them to perform all those specialised work in their particular field.
  • Solves high-level issues: Generalists can only solve small problems of every domain, but to provide a solution for some high-level issues, it’s a specialist’s job. They are much better at providing such solutions based on their expertise.

Specialists are also prone to cons. They are:

  • Limited abilities: If any other work apart from their skill set is provided to them, it can be a huge challenge. They are generally hired for a particular set of tasks, and anything other than that can be a burden to them and the company.
  • Not suited for multitasking: Asking a specialist to move in between projects simultaneously, which does not fall under his/her area of expertise is a big NO. Thus, they lack a very important quality of multitasking and thus cross-domain functioning.
  • Not easily adaptive to changing situations: Being set in their ways of working and approaching problems, a specialist often finds it difficult to adapt to changes. So, this is a drawback of working with specialists.
  • Risk of non-cordial relationships with the workforce: Specialists are generally unable to answer questions outside their purview of knowledge, which can irritate their co-workers. They may come off as having very limited knowledge and not being able to get much on the table.

So, whom to choose?

No firm can thrive only with a workforce of either generalists or specialists. The correct answer to this question is an optimum mix of both in the workforce, which will help to facilitate a diverse range of tasks. Choosing one and rejecting the other is highly dependent on the task at hand and the kind of skills required to get the work done. Seeing today’s competitive world, a hybrid model must be followed where people who are inclined to be both must be hired and given a chance as these people will have knowledge regarding many domains and can provide the expertise of a specialist too.

What is global mobility? Everything to know about global mobility.

“Global mobility”, as the word suggests, means the movement of employees of any firm anywhere around the world, physically. Current times are the time of globalization. Whether big or small, all companies are expanding in all directions so that they can also test international waters and reap its benefits. When the world is becoming more and more connected with each passing day, global mobility is not just a strategy but also a way of survival and thriving for companies. It has its advantages, challenges and benefits, as it has now become a way of living for firms.

What is global mobility?

Global mobility is the ability of any firm’s workforce to work easily while going from one country to another and delivering and thereby succeeding in professional and personal lives. A fairly recent strategy, which all the companies have not completely adopted, but if successfully implemented, can open doors for unlimited opportunities for the firms. For companies to have a global workforce, they can have employees who live permanently in another country, frequently travel to different companies or have short-term and long-term contracts with companies. Asking an employee to move to an international location for a project also comes under global mobility. Moving an employee to a foreign location is a big challenge, but companies have to ensure that the process is smooth flow.

What are some of the factors that the company needs to consider for the preparation of its global mobility strategy?

Shifting employees to a foreign jurisdiction is never an easy task, so there are certain critical factors that the company must look into before venturing into a global mobility strategy. They are:

  • Immigration details that include work permits, visas, residence permits and many more
  • International HR can help the employees with processes like onboarding, grievances, appraisals, everyday issues
  • Relocation matters, which include residence and schooling options for the employee’s kids
  • Income tax laws and social security obligations both of the home location and host location, which is of utmost importance
  • Employment laws of the host country, which includes contracts, projects, assignment letters
  • Payroll matters like payment structure, the currency of payment, tax structure, location of payroll and many more
  • Benefits and pension communication between the company and the employee
  • Teaching about the culture of the host country so that the employee becomes familiar with the local business practices

What are the advantages of a global mobility strategy for your firm?

Since global mobility is a strategy that is widely adopted by many firms in current times, it surely has a lot of advantages. Some of them are:

  • Employee development: By opening the doors of the firm for employees to foreign lands, the firm provides an opportunity to the employees to enhance their skills and experience working in foreign lands, which proves beneficial both for the company and the employee.
  • Increased employee engagement and productivity: With most employees feeling that a chance to move abroad is a reward provided to them for their hard work, global mobility increases employee engagement in the company’s matter which directly increases their productivity.
  • Enhanced employee retention: Global mobility is seen to directly correlate with the employee retention rates of a firm. As global mobility is an investment that a firm does on its employee, the employee feels that the management is looking into the internal talent pool to fill up the key positions. Thus they see a bright future in the firm.
  • Speedy entry into new markets: In today’s competitive landscape, entering into new markets before competition makes a foothold there. The gathering of data and exploiting new opportunities as soon as they arise are critical factors for survival, and global mobility helps in just that.
  • Cost-cutting: Proper planning of the global mobility strategy can help the firm save a huge amount of costs from saving on tax compliances worldwide to relocation savings.
  • Global talent management: A global mobility strategy helps the firm provide proper exposure to top talents to help them develop their skills to serve the company long-term.
  • Valuable data exchange: Obtaining correct data from various sources, analyzing them and then using it to the best of the company’s abilities is one of the most important benefits of a global mobility program.

What are some of the challenges that a firm faces while effectively managing a global mobility strategy?

Although a global mobility strategy is important, it comes with its own set of challenges too. Some of these are:

  • Expectation mismatch: Most employees expect to move to high-end countries and expect a lavish lifestyle once they shift there, but none is willing to move to small cities. So, there is a mismatch between the company’s needs and the employee’s expectations.
  • Leave management: With employees all over the world, providing leaves according to local holidays and regulations is a tiresome job. This causes mismanagement, and consistency is required to make every employee at ease.
  • Flexibility vs work done: Owing to foreign regulations and conditions, mobile workers need flexibility but beware, this flexibility must not ruin their zeal to work and increase the cost of expatriation to the company.
  • Diversity: Having a diverse background may not be a good sign everywhere. Not every place is tolerant of people of all kinds of ethnicity, gender, nationality and sexuality. So, this can be a challenge in having a mobile workforce.
  • Bureaucracy: Dealing with all the paperwork, privacy laws, security issues, cost overruns and many more.

How can a firm effectively manage global mobility?

Global mobility can be a pain for companies, so some of the ways which can ensure an effective mobility strategy are:

  • Strategic choice of employees: Selecting the employee who has assumed leadership roles in the past, the experience and professional maturity of the employee should be the criteria to choose people for mobility programs.
  • Clear communication: For a mobility strategy to work, there must be clear communication between the employee and the HR handling the entire process so that they both are on the same page and thus least amount of fall out occurs.
  • Flexibility: To make the most out of the international stint of the mobile employee, the company must remain flexible and adapt to certain needs of the employee.
  • Streamlining the entire process: A clear plan detailing the important tasks to be done when an employee goes abroad can help save a lot of money and must be planned.

Global mobility is difficult, but it is the need of the hour if the company wants to be on top of its game. Having huge benefits, the mobile workforce is the call of the future, and thus good planning must be done to incorporate it into the firm’s strategy.

How can HR managers negotiate salary?

Salary, Remuneration, Compensation, etc. is the only thing that brings a huge smile on the face after a month-long of hard toil. Deciding upon an appropriate salary is an art of negotiation between the employer and the employee that has to be done tactfully from both sides. Salary negotiation is the most awaited phase of the employment process and it generally arises in 2 important stages. One during the hiring stint, which decides the first salary structure of the new joinee and the next comes at intervals many times during the employee’s appraisal stage when the salary needs to be revised and accommodations need to be done to pay the employee based on his/her hard work. There are certain tips that HR needs to keep in mind while going through a salary negotiation process.

What is salary negotiation?

A job offer comes with a predefined salary package. Not everyone might be satisfied with the kind of pay offered to them. So, talking with the recruiting partner (generally the HR), to adjust the salary offered based on their skill set, capabilities, needs and expectations are called salary negotiation. The window for salary negotiation is between the time the job is offered to the time the candidate accepts the job and after a successful salary negotiation, which is a process where none of the negotiators should feel that they are devalued, the firm feels excited to welcome the candidate to their family.

What are some of the strategies that HRs can use to successfully negotiate salary during the hiring process?

The most critical negotiation step comes during the hiring process when the candidate is a new joinee and is just about to join the firm. The HR must have a carefully worded negotiation process which must include the following strategies to have a successful negotiation:

  • Have salary ranges for different job roles: A firm comprises different jobs which are of different importance and criticality. So, having salary ranges according to the job levels which is verified according to the industry standards and publishing it beforehand, will provide a lower band and a ceiling for the joinee to negotiate salary.
  • Be clear with the candidate from the beginning: The best way to successfully handle a salary negotiation is by being clear from the start and do that the first question that the HR should ask is what is that the candidate desires in a compensation package and then the HR can use this to successfully culminate a negotiation.
  • Additional monetary benefits: Try to create a compelling offer by adding additional components as joining bonus, performance pay, stock-based compensation. Adding these to the salary structure leaves less space for negotiation by the employee.
  • Understand the person’s needs and add non-monetary benefits: Not every candidate might run after huge salary figures. Having a fair idea about the compensation structure that the candidate has in mind and thus creating a structure that includes health insurance, travel benefits and many more, is a suitable strategy to negotiate salary in terms of both monetary and non-monetary benefits.

What are some of the salary negotiation considerations that the HRs should keep in mind during hiring?

Some of the considerations that the HRs must keep in mind are:

  • What is the job level that is being offered to the applicant?
  • Economic conditions affecting the industry
  • Economic conditions affecting the job market
  • Salary levels as compared to market average
  • Skillset offered by the applicant
  • Importance of the role offered
  • Scarcity of the skills offered by the applicant
  • Appraisal and promotion practices in your company

How can HR negotiate salary during the appraisal process?

The appraisal is that time of the year where employees wait a year long to have a conversation with HR about their work and how the company plans on rewarding them in return for their hard work. It also includes feedback to the employees on how they can improve and thus provide maximum returns to the company. So, during this process, many employees expect that they might be receiving salary hikes and thus round 2 of the negotiation process begins. These are some ways how the HR can deal with this:

  • Have a discussion: Discuss the situation at hand, try to reach a solution calmly rather than turning it into an argument.
  • Provide an appraised structure based on research: Taking into consideration the employee’s performance and the prevalent market standards, provide an appraised salary structure.
  • Pay may be slightly higher for retaining employees: A tactic to retain top performers is by paying them slightly higher than the market average which in turn will be advantageous for the firm in the long run.
  • Provide additional perks rather than monetary ones: Providing certain extra benefits like increased leaves and others may help in concluding the salary negotiation process.

What are some of the salary negotiation considerations that the HRs should keep in mind during the appraisal process?

Some of the considerations to be kept in mind during the appraisal process are:

  • How well is the candidate paid before the appraisal
  • Considerations of other factors like cost of living of the place
  • Company’s budget for a pay rise
  • Prevalent rate of inflation
  • Company’s previous trends of salary appraisals
  • Company’s performance in the previous fiscal year
  • How many extra responsibilities to be transferred to the employee
  • The employee’s performance in the past year and how much of a valuable asset he/she is to the firm

What are some of the tips that HR must have in mind before going for a salary negotiation process?

Salary negotiation can be a daunting task both for the employer and the employee. Making it a fair process so that both sides feel that they reached a common conclusion is a must. So, some of the tips for HR to follow before going for salary negotiation are:

  • A mutual decision has to be reached; it is not about winning.
  • Have correct information regarding the previous salary structure received by the applicant in his/her previous firm.
  • Have defined ranges, only between which salary negotiations can take place.
  • Apart from the monetary part of the compensation structure, there are limits on the non-monetary aspects too.
  • Do not go overboard, even to accommodate a skilled candidate.
  • If the salary is non-negotiable, make it clear to the candidate while making the job offer.

There is a huge responsibility on the shoulders of HR while undergoing the negotiation process. The entire future of the firm along with the cost structure of the firm can change if HR makes one wrong decision. So, a lot is at stake for the firm. So, a calm and sensible salary negotiation will ensure that the company does not lose a valuable, superior candidate.

The need for sexual harassment policy in the workplace

Employees would like to feel safe in the environment they spend their maximum time in. Making a safe workplace is of the topmost agendas of all the firms, and this topic is treated with utmost sincerity. Unfortunately, workplace harassment is very common, and identifying it and eliminating it from its root cause is of utmost importance. Sexual harassment is the worst form of harassment. Though all people are susceptible to it, there are many cases where women have suffered from the ugly side of it. So, prevention of sexual harassment is the number one task in any workplace, and if not prevented or taken care of even after addressing, it can worsen and lead to something even more ugly. So, a strict sexual harassment policy must be in place, with training to the employees on preventing these kinds of acts on the premises. 

What is sexual harassment?

The cases of sexual harassment are increasing, and the people suffering from this undergo a life-long trauma. So, organizations must have strict sexual harassment policies in check and spare no one if that person comes on the radar. Any kind of discriminatory activity that attracts unwelcome intentions of sexual nature towards any person is called sexual harassment. It has a very wide base and includes all activities ranging from small like a sly remark or an inappropriate way of calling to huge sexual assault or sexual abuses. There is no gender bar for being the victim or the perpetrator in a sexual harassment case.

What can all be considered as an act of sexual harassment?

  • Discriminatory comments or vulgar jokes, which forms a cheap source of entertainment but can be considered sexual harassment
  • Eve teasing, invading someone’s privacy, uncomfortable invitations of meetups outside official premises
  • Creating an environment such that the co-worker feels uncomfortable working in the workplace
  • Sexual advances, asking for sexual favors, in return for employment, promotion, or any benefits
  • Any gesture by any employee which is laden with sexual hints
  • Staring, passing lewd comments, unwanted touching
  • Demand for sexual favors
  • Verbal, non-verbal, physical conduct of sexual nature
  • Showing pornography

What is the need for sexual harassment policies?

According to a survey, more than one-third of women have claimed to have undergone sexual harassment in workplaces. The devil is rearing up its ugly head in an increasing manner, and something or the other needs to be done to prevent it. So, every organization must have sexual harassment policies to discourage such behavior and protect its victim and its firm if something really bad happens.

A strict anti-harassment policy will act as a good deterrent and make employees aware of the policies by which the firm is guided and will also make it very clear to them what kind of behavior is strictly not acceptable in the workplace. It also lays out strict punishment that the perpetrator will have to undergo in case of complaints. A well-written procedure of what to do if such cases arise gives the victim a clear-cut path to follow. A written document also serves as a liability for the firm to protect the organization if discrimination lawsuit occurs.

What should a sexual harassment policy contain?

A sexual harassment policy of any firm must be crystal clear with instructions and what all needs to be done if a situation arises. Some of the important must include things are:

  • NO tolerance: The first thing that any firm’s sexual harassment policy must include is that the firm has ZERO Tolerance for sexual harassment activities and that strict actions will be taken against it.
  • Examples: Examples of what comes under sexual harassment will give a clearer picture to the employees
  • Definition: A must-have in all the policies, what exactly is sexual harassment
  • Reporting is a must:  In case of occurrence of such event, reporting to the concerned officials is a must so that further steps can be taken and investigation carried out
  • Protection from vengeful acts: The victim needs to have the assurance that if they come forward and complained, and then if they suffer any vengeful acts from the preparator, the organization has its backs
  • Procedure for filing complaints: A detailed step-by-step process of how the victim should reach out to the concerned authorities and how the investigation process will pan out
  • Confidentiality: Maintenance of strict confidentiality of victims as and where possible should be guaranteed
  • Training: A active program, where all the employees are trained against sexual harassment activities and what steps need to be taken in case of occurrence

What are the advantages of sexual harassment policies in a firm?

A must-have for all the firms, some of the advantages of a strong sexual harassment policy are:

  • Creates awareness and educates the employees of what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior in a workplace and thus make people more aware of their surroundings and actions
  • Helps to better the workplace culture that is offered to the employees, where employees have the confidence that they can work ethically and no malpractice will take place, thus making them feel safe
  • Sends a strong message from the top-level positions that sexual harassment is something against which the entire organization stands together and strict repercussions are in place for the offender
  • Continuous training sessions provide a sense of team among the employees
  • Also provides training to the bystanders as to what can be done to stop the harassment in case if it happens in front of them
  • Encourages reporting, as most of the cases go unreported just because the victim was embarrassed, it encourages the people to come forward and help catch the offender so that the horrible act is not repeated again

What are the steps that must be taken to prevent sexual harassment cases at the workplace?

Some of the steps that can be taken to prevent sexual harassment at the workplace are:

  • In the case of victims, be clear and make the offender know that this kind of behavior is unwelcome
  • Deal with the situation upfront and raise your voice and make the matter known
  • Demand that the harassment must stop at once with a firm tone and professional body language
  • Discuss it with a friend or with someone that you can trust
  • Report the sexual harassment act to HR or the concerned authorities

What to do as an employer in case of sexual harassment occurs in the workplace?

As the concerned authority, if it is brought to your notice that someone suffers from sexual harassment in your workplace, then some of the steps that can be taken are:

  • Notify all the concerned authorities and the HR team

Treat the victim with respect and hear the person out carefully, be empathetic

  • Investigate at the earliest
  • Take the required actions that need to be taken during and after the investigation as mentioned in the policies
  • Include government agencies if need be
  • Find out ways in which the matter can be resolved
  • Document the entire investigation
  • Deal with the offender as described in the policy
  • Devise a media plan if the matter takes a huge turn

Sexual harassment is a growing offense in every workplace. Prevention of this is a daunting task that every organization faces. Women have to face the ugly brunt of this in maximum cases. Steps need to be taken to make the workplace a safer and more welcoming environment for the employees. Strict policies are in place. Still, it is a long road ahead, which can only be met if everyone works together.

Importance of hiring a global workforce.

Every company operates intending to grow into something huge one day. Thus, expansion of the workforce is the direct result of it. Inclusion of diversity has become the fundamental goals of almost all firms, and they tend to work towards it diligently. Global expansion is the solution but implementing it has its hurdles. Having a global workforce is beneficial in many aspects, but it requires an HR strategy that must be suited globally which includes immigration policies, why people used to migrate to different cities, global mobility rules, managing worldwide talent and how to make an inclusive strategy. In this competitive world, every company requires a talented workforce to help them achieve their long-term goal. Winning this global talent war is an additional task that the company needs to do to retain the top talent and build a strong workforce.

What is a global workforce?

Hiring a global workforce or global talent is the need of the hour. Hiring people from all around the world is called a global workforce. Hiring people internationally increases the possibility of attracting and retaining the best quality talent from around the globe and thus increases the company’s shot at maintaining diversity. Shortage of skills in specific areas can also turn you to hire globally where there are plenty of skills available.

What is the need for a global workforce?

Having a global workforce, expanding internationally comes with many benefits. Let’s take a look at them:

  • The most important benefit is that it helps strengthen the diversity factor in firms and thus opens doors for alternate ways of thinking.
  • New hires from different parts of the world bring in expertise and learnings of different locations and thus provide valuable insights regarding operations in different parts of the world.
  • Global hires provide a new way to enter potential new markets and thus take on the first-mover advantage.
  • Helps to understand the local customs and business practices that aid in capturing the market.
  • Helps in diversifying the company’s markets into untapped areas, thereby securing revenue stability in case anyone particular sector experiences some downturn.
  • It also helps the company increase its brand value, thereby having the prestige of calling itself an international company. Thus, it helps in improving the reputation of the company.

What is global mobility?

In earlier times, people used to migrate from rural areas to urban areas in need of work. As the rural areas lacked opportunities and exposure, people from all age groups used to move to urban areas in search of jobs so that they could help their families better. Industrialization in the early 19th century opened up gates with varied job opportunities and in need of a massive amount of workforce. Many people used to toggle between rural and urban landscapes to support their families as well as fulfil the needs of their job roles. In today’s times, people shifting from their country of residence to other countries for work requirements is called global mobility.  

In today’s scenario, companies need to send their talents to different parts of the world to look over their business. Workforces cannot just work from the confinements of their own country. They need to have global exposure to understand the different aspects of their work and thus learn and grow. This is called global mobility. Handling international expatriates is a mighty task, and clear HR strategies must be in place to help them smoothly through the process. Preparing the workforce for a mobile future is a demanding task that every company needs to fulfil by preparing policies, having a clear strategy and having immigration policies in place.

What is workplace immigration?

Hiring a global workforce implies that talents don’t have borders. To hire international talent, employers must have an electronic, national and an integrated employee eligibility verification system. People working in different countries other than their country of nationality are called immigrants, and the process of going from one country to another for work is called workplace immigration. HRs must keep a documented record for employee’s immigration, and HR acts as the facilitator too.

No individual who is not legally permitted to work in the U.S. can take any job there. Employment and immigration rules in the U.S. are too strict, and thus companies have to be vigilant in hiring U.S. candidates for work or for sending their workforce to the U.S. Immigrant workers are provided with several protections as illegal discrimination against immigrants is on a rampant rise in today’s world. So, they need to be protected under the law.  

What are certain things that employers must know about workplace immigration?

There are specific facts that employers must know to help them formulate good global workforce strategy and immigration laws. Some of these are:

  • The most commonly used employee-based immigration visa is the H-1B – The H-1B visa is the work permit that allows all foreign people to go to the U.S. and thus have employment with American companies. The foreign national should work in speciality fields where a U.S. based worker is not to be found. The visa is sponsored by the employer and is valid for 3 years, which can be extended.
  • Applying for visas are costly – Applying for visas are expensive and are generally borne by the company. That is the reason hiring a global worker is a matter of long-term strategy for the firm. Careful consideration and planning must be in place before hiring international people as it is a costly affair. One wrong decision and the company can lose millions.
  • The government puts a cap on the number of approved H-1B visas per year- The Government approves only 65000 H-1B visas every year. Due to the ongoing war for talent acquisition, the government receives much more H-1B visas than it can approve, and thus the visas are distributed by lottery systems.  
  • In times of a good economy, the U.S. has more job openings than the unemployed people there – the U.S. has a vast labour force, but it is not more than the number of openings in the U.S. So, hiring globally can help bridge this demand-supply gap.
  • The workplace immigration process is time-consuming – Lengthy timings, the complexity of visa paperwork and the uncertainty of visa approval are some of the challenges in hiring a global workforce. Most of the HRs find this to be too lengthy but also worth their efforts.

The global workforce is the need of every firm to help their organization in reaching the pinnacles of success that they have aimed for. A strategic decision by choice is also a fruitful one. Hiring and retaining the correct talent is the aim of all organizations and is the need of the hour to stay ahead in the competition.

How can HR network with other HR?

 Corporate and networking go hand in hand. One cannot go without the other. The more one networks, the bigger is that person’s corporate circle is. And you know who is called the people’s person in the corporate world? Oh, Yes! You guessed it correctly. It is the HR! The person who works acts as the bridge between you and management, the person who is always there to listen to your woes, the person who takes care of any employee-related issue, that person is at the apostle of networking and must use their skills to network with other HRs of different companies too.

What is the importance of networking for HRs?

Getting involved in networking with other HRs is a great way to keep up with recent trends, new opportunities, share and learn best practices with your fellow HR members. Networking into your HR fraternity can help tap into some specialized skill set, gather market data, plan for new strategic alliances for the organization and also help to pursue new business leads. HR networking is an important weapon under the skill set of HRs, and its importance can be measured by the following factors:

  • Network with people who will help you to fulfil your purpose, whatever the purpose may be, which is a long-term strategy in the sense that they become your allies for a longer period and can help you later too
  • Evolving with times is the need of the hour, so making strong connections digitally is equally important as making connections in person
  • It helps in the scouting of potential clients as well as employees for the organization who can be hired as soon as an opportunity turns up
  • It also helps in maximizing the firm’s potential
  • A good network helps in building the firm’s reputation and also gather advocates for the organization’s credibility  

What are some of the ways HRs can use to network?

Branching out to people is always a good idea, which is the basis of networking every

HR must follow. Some of the ways HR can use to network with each other are:

  • Participate in #Twitter chats

Twitter has become a top-rated tool where all HR professionals from around the world gather and share their experiences and thoughts. This widespread practice has also given rise to Twitter chats and hashtags like #HRhour. This includes some questions based on new topics each week, and people can use their platform to share insights and gain knowledge. Joining these groups and participating so that people notice you are a great way of increasing the network.

  • Become a part of various LinkedIn groups

As everyone knows, LinkedIn is the largest networking website in today’s world. Millions of people use LinkedIn every day to expand their contact list and use it to get to know more people. Similarly, HRs can also become part of various HYR groups that are there on LinkedIn and can use it to interact and understand other people of their fraternity. Here, people can chat one-on-one, communicate in groups, share their ideas, have healthy debates and can keep up-to-date with new happenings in the HR world.

  • Visiting various HR Conferences

What better way than meeting fellow HR professionals in a conference which is organized just for HR people? It is like an ocean that needs to be explored to satisfy the hunger of networking with fellow mates. There are many specially organized conferences, especially for this purpose. For an extroverted HR, this is the kind of place that he/she will love and will love to exercise the opportunity of meeting so many new people all under one roof! Not only for mingling, but these conferences are also generally organized to make all the top-level HRs aware of the recent developments in the HR universe and how they can be exploited to bring accolades to their firms. Some of the well-known conferences that are organized every year are HR Summit and Expo, Dubai, FAHR conference, Dubai, ATD Conference and Exhibition, Dubai and many more.

  • Become part of other HR dedicated events

There are many small events organized for a smaller group of HR people where networking can be a bit easier. Events like workshops that are focused on a specific topic lasting only for a few hours may help provide a cosy environment for striking up conversations and socializing with your fellow mates. The perfect location to build up your network where some part of the day is used up for the event and the other half for forming new connections.

  • Networking through professional courses

There are many courses that HR needs to equip themselves with to face the daily changes. So, while doing the study, healthy discussions, group tasks, query resolving are great ways of forming bonds and getting to know fellow HR individuals. Bonds generally formed outside the corporate structure tend to have a familial touch to it and thus tend to last longer. So, a great place to start the networking game.

Networking is the bread and butter of corporate life. Acing this skill will help you go a long way and will help in making your corporate journey a smooth ride. Everyone must hone this skill. HRs must take this very seriously as some future decisions of the firm might also rely on this networking skill. So, what other ways can you think of that HRs can use to broaden their network?

Work from Home: Pros, Cons, and Policies

As the name suggests, doing all the work done from the cubicle/cabin of your office, from the comfort of your home, is called work from home. Before the pandemic hit our lives in 2020, this was a needed 1-day break taken by the employees to cool off the steam of everyday workplace hustle. But today, this has become a mandate for keeping up with the virus and still getting the work done. Working remotely, the necessary evil has its pros and cons, where the world has adapted with changing needs to set and track the goals every day and thus motivate the workforce to deliver with equal zeal from their haven, i.e., their home.

What is work from home?

Work from home or its more popular acronym WFH means working remotely, from your own space, from your HOME. Creating your workstation at your home, with no stress of commuting to work daily, waking up, sitting in the workspace, with no chatty colleagues, working in stay-at-home pajamas are few things that work from home entails. With the coronavirus pandemic still looming at large, WFH is here to stay for the long haul. A stable internet connection and a mobile workstation, and you can work from anywhere in the world!

What are the advantages of working from home?

Building a workspace at home sounds exciting. Some of the advantages include the comfort, own timings, saving money (lots of) and many more! So, looking at these in detail:

  • Safety comes firstWith almost negligible touchpoints, your home is probably the safest place to stay amidst the pandemic, and thus WFH comes as a blessing in disguise!
  • Unleash your creative sideDesigning your workspace is displaying your utmost creativity, all the things required to get the work done effectively, and creating a space where you enjoy the most strikes a perfect balance. A comfortable chair, the correct amount of light, a place with minimum noise are essential factors to keep in mind while designing your workspace.
  • Enhancing productivityResearch suggests that WFH employees have better productivity as they work in their own comfortable space and thus deliver more effectively. Some of the things that might help achieve this are, having defined start and end times for working, proper meals between work, taking some time out to manage the stress, and dressing well for an important meeting!
  • No commuting to and fro workEveryone knows it’s a big YAY! The last thing anyone needs after a tiring day at work is an hour-long traffic jam! Guess what? WFH eliminates commuting to work altogether and thus saving transportation money on the go too!
  • More time for other activitiesWFH saves time. There is no doubt about it! So, this extra time can be utilized for completing that series that is still left, for having a movie night all to yourself, for doing anything that your heart desires!
  • Better work-life balanceSince there are flexible schedules for most of the projects, choosing your start and end of day to deliver outcomes helps in effective management of both work and personal front of your life.
  • Saving moneyThe most significant advantage of WFH undeniably is saving tons of money! Be it fuel cost, transportation cost, cost of ordering food, an updated professional wardrobe, and many more! All of these costs are saved and can be put to better use.
  • A healthier lifestyleWFH promotes a healthy way of being! Staying at home promotes activities like eating at home more, regular exercise, spending more time with our near and dear ones, which also has a positive impact on our mental health, promoting mental and physical fitness.

What are some of the cons of WFH?

WFH is called the necessary evil as it is also susceptible to cons of its own. So, some of the disadvantages of WFH are:

  • Lack of concentration: Not being in the office environment can cause individuals to get distracted frequently and get busy with their work.
  • Scarcity of office equipment: Not everyone might have a wi-fi connection, high-end tech, and laptops to work efficiently from home.
  • Lack of communication, motivation, and teamwork: Working in silos may not be everyone’s cup of tea. Thus lack of communication also brings down the motivation to work.
  • There is no clear distinction between family time and official time: Lack of fixed defined office timings can irritate and interrupt family time.
  • Security issues: Security issues outside the workplace is a severe concern that plagues WFH.

What is a work from home policy?

As WFH is becoming the new normal where the employees and the employers meet each other only on the screen, so being distracted from your goals and under-delivery of work can become a very common problem. So, work from home policies is developed, which clearly explains the expectations that the employer has from the employee, the goals that need to be achieved in a specific time frame, how to behave and deliver in work from home setup, and many more which are included in the policy.

As WFH is pretty new, WFH policies can be tailor-made and customized as and when required. It must also include the company-specific values and must be enforced upon the employees to not take WFH lightly and thus do not slack. WFH serves as the guidelines that help the employees follow a specific code of conduct even remotely.

What are the critical components of a WFH policy?

Some of the essential elements of a WFH policy are:

  • A clear purposeA clear statement stating what is expected from the employees, their goals, time frame, some specific WFH rules, and how they will be implemented must be included.
  • Scope and eligibilitySpecifying which job titles require working remotely, how can they be implemented, when WFH is applicable, WFH job scope, and what cannot be granted WFH access must be specified clearly.
  • Standards regarding availability and attendanceWFH can make people lazy, and thus getting them to do work can be a monumental task. So, clear guidelines on when the employee must be available, the number of days the employees can miss work without getting a pay cut must be specified.
  • Providing tech supportOffice laptops, allowance for a good internet connection, and all the necessary support for WFH must be provided by the office.
  • Dress code: WFH also includes having meetings with clients and other stakeholders, so dressing appropriately when required is a non-negotiable rule.
  • Benefits and compensation detailsChange in any kind of allowances or compensation structure due to WFH must be included in the policy.
  • Security guidelinesCompany data is confidential, and working remotely increases the risk of leaking the data out, whether knowingly or unknowingly. Having proper security guidelines in place, which include using a password-protected network when working remotely, must be mentioned.
  • Measuring productivityOne of the most challenging tasks is regulating the employee’s work and measuring their productivity in a WFH setup. Specific measures that can be used to measure productivity are:

o  Define KPIs for different job roles: Clearly defined performance indicators for other job titles will provide a matrix, which will aid in the productivity measurement of additional employees.

o  Assign tasks to your employees which serve as milestones: Any task with well-defined milestones is easier to track. It also maintains visibility and helps the employees to glance at their progress every day and thus motivates them to perform better.

o  Using a project management tool: A project management tool divides the entire project into small tasks; therefore, it becomes easier to allocate tasks and maintain a checklist of everyone’s progress.

keeping track of average time per person spending on work: Having a record of how much time a person spends on work and correlating it with the number of tasks completed gives an idea about the employee’s productivity.

o  A strict reporting structure: All the employees should be required to submit a report of their entire day’s working to their supervisor to be regulated better, complications can be identified and dealt with earlier.

WFH has always had conflicting viewpoints. There is a set of people who believe that WFH decreases productivity due to lack of supervision. In contrast, the other sect believes that productivity increases due to a better mind frame of the employee. True or not, WFH is here to stay for the long run, so there is no option but to adjust to it as it is what the post-pandemic world looks like.

How to retain top performers of your company?

Good employees form the backbone of any firm. They form the building blocks upon which a successful organization stands. Employees can make or break any organization. So, good hires, identification of great talent, nurturing them, giving them a chance to grow and thus retaining them is crucial for any firm. In this overly competitive environment, where no one leaves any stone unturned to help their organization achieve their business goals and reach the pinnacles of success by poaching good employees, retention of top talent within any firm is of fundamental importance.

A great retention strategy is an ongoing process that starts from the moment a candidate is recruited. From hiring the right person with the right amount of skill set, aligning the company’s vision, mission and goals with the person’s ideology, guiding him/her the correct way from the beginning along with perks and benefits, providing opportunities along its way, valuing the candidate and making him/her the integral part of the firm are some things that constitute a good retention strategy.

 What are some of the ways to retain top performers?

Some of the ways that can be used for retaining top performers in a firm are:

  • Recognize the employee’s worth and its value to the company: Top performers in any field want to be recognized and appreciated for their hard work and their contributions to the task-at-hand. Few words of encouragement can work miracles for them and thus give them the boost to put in their 200% in the next project. They appreciate that their hard work is valued and is not going unnoticed. Continuous praise will increase their productivity and return.
  • Providing honest reviews, constructive criticism to the employee: A great talent will not just want appreciation, but will also be willing to learn whenever mistakes occur. So, providing honest reviews not only gives them a clear idea about their positioning but also provides them with the areas where they can improve to top their games. It will help them to see this feedback as a growth opportunity where they can improve.
  • Providing the employee clear guidance and path for career progression: Guiding the employee from the beginning, allowing and encouraging him/her to learn new skills, to keep up-to-date with new trends, providing a clear guide as to how their career can progress in the organization in the future can help in employee retention.
  • Taking care of the employee’s happiness and well-being: A happy employee will work wholeheartedly for the company and provide maximum positive returns. An employee who is satisfied with the work culture is more likely to stay in the company longer. So, providing a good work culture, taking care of your employee’s happiness is something that can provide much information regarding an employee.
  • Allow the employees to participate, seek their inputs and allow them to share their ideas: An employee knows that he/she is considered important when they are allowed to share their ideas, their opinions are asked. It makes them feel included and they think that they are also an important part of the firm and will provide great, fresh ideas.
  • Employee’s growth is of paramount importance and thus investing in their growth is necessary: Top-performing individuals are driven by their desire to grow be it personally or professionally and they like to flourish in an environment that helps them to do so. So, creating opportunities for their growth and allowing them to embark on such journeys helps in the retention of top performers.
  • Provide them with new responsibilities and help them grow their skill set in all horizons: Giving a new set of responsibilities to any candidate is an indication that the person is ready to take on a new mantle and has the abilities to ace them. When provided with new responsibilities, the candidate also feels motivated seeing that the organization has trust in his abilities and is trusting him/her with new projects. Allow them to mentor new candidates which also serves as a test for them as to how they are as team leaders. This provides them with a feeling of accomplishment and thus motivated them for a positive career progression with the company.
  • Allow for flexibility: A rigid working schedule is mandatory for a workplace, but some kind of flexibility like flexible working hours, mobility, remote working options and many more, needs to be there in case of emergencies. Anyone will appreciate an environment where needs are understood and cared for. Nowadays, most of the workplaces are adapting to flexible working hours, which the employees love and they are likely to stick around longer in firms that provide them what their heart desires.
  • Give the top performers the liberty to function on their own, treat them as fellow partners: No one likes to be micromanaged. Give the employees the freedom to do things their way, have faith in their abilities, treat them as important personas and trust them. Retaining top-level candidates means the company wants them to promote to positions of power one day, give them the freedom to deliver what you expect from them.
  • Provide the right kind of benefits, perks and monetary motivation, i.e.; reward them: Benefits and perks go a long way in keeping the employees happy and motivated. Attractive healthcare packages, paid leaves, flexible working hours, higher packages, vacations, attractive bonuses are some of the options to keep the employees interested in the long haul. Nowadays, providing various kinds of stock options to the employees are also favoured, which makes the employees part-owner of the company. Providing continuous appraisals, based on the work done by the employees also serves as a great motivator.
  • Communication is the key to healthy and long-term relationships: Open and transparent communication is the bedrock for fostering good relationships with your employees. Encouraging an open atmosphere where all the employees can speak, share ideas, communicate freely, have a fun environment with light banter and transparent goals, makes an ideal atmosphere for retaining top talent.

Retention of top performers is important for an organization to achieve its business goals and thus it is a long-term strategy. Good workplace culture tops the strategic checkpoints for retention of employees. A good workplace breeds good employees who are more productive. So, in this competitive landscape where retaining a good workforce is a growing challenge, firms must carry out regular methods to retain them and thereby think about their long-term goals. There goes a debate which says, offering cash benefits is not a very effective way to retain top performers, what are your views on this?

How to develop a Pay Structure?

A clear pay structure is one of the first important things that any company should have on its to-do list, which requires a lot of scouting and analysing. Proper market research on the different kinds of job roles, the kind of responsibilities that it entails, required skills of the employees helps in creating a pay structure template. A good remuneration plays a central role in employee satisfaction, which can be enhanced by providing them benefits of various kinds, which is a very tough goal. Post-retirement benefits in the form of EPF are included in every company’s payment structure which is mandated. ESI works to provide health insurance benefits for the employees, but it suffers from its own limitations. Let us have an elaborate look at these topics.

What are some of the steps that the company must go through to develop a pay structure?

  • Establishing value for each job position: Through market research of competitive firms, what other firms are paying for similar job roles, establish a value for each job role in your company by benchmarking other similar jobs and analysing their data.
  • Measuring the market position of the company: Comparing the company’s salary level with the average of the market’s pay level to understand some of the basic questions in terms of affordability, attracting and retaining of employees.
  • Have a clear budget for the salary payout: A defined budget is a very critical step that every company must have from the very beginning. Internal budget constraints and external market factors will pose as opposing forces in reaching a satisfactory pay structure.
  • Define compensable leverage for the employees: This is the increase in salary rate when the employees are promoted compared to the market rates of promotion in similar positions.
  • Start allocating and final adjustments: A series of hit and trial methods to reach the appropriate salary ranges for different job profiles based on the market data collected and analysed to reach a final pay structure.
  • Management approval and Communicate: After getting the management’s final approval for the salary ranges of different profiles, the pay structure is then communicated to all the staff.

What are the different kinds of pay structures?

  • Individual pay rates/ranges: The most common form of pay structure, where the employees are told about their fixed salaries beforehand, and thus the company also has an exact estimate of their payout, their hiring potential. This is a rigid structure where the employees can have the only progression of their salaries if they are promoted. Contrary to this, the individual pay range provides a band of salary range that different employees in different job profiles can expect.
  •  Broadbanding: Dividing the employees according to their pay grades. There are different pay grades for different managerial job roles and executive job roles. This system includes maximum and minimum pay, with incremental stages between them, where the employees start at the minimum and then, based on her/his performance, get the increment.
  • Pay Spine: A simplified pay structure, where the spine is made up of pay points from the lowest entry-level salary to the executive level salary, and each pay point is defined with the fixed predefined salary and incremental levels in a particular position.
  • Job Families: A versatile pay structure, where the transition is based on the employee’s knowledge, skill, loyalty, experience. Here, similar roles are grouped, and each role is separated based on knowledge and seniority.

Do you know the most important components of a salary structure in India are?

  • CTC or the Cost to Company: It includes all the components such as HR, bonus, basic salary, PF, etc.
  • Basic salary: It constitutes 35-50% of the total wage, based on the designation of the employee and the fixed amount that is paid before any deduction or increase.
  • Gross salary: The salary just before any deduction like taxes.
  • Net salary: The final takeaway salary after deducting the TDS, also called the in-hand salary.
  • Allowances: Different remuneration that is paid to the employees over a year, where these allowances can be taxed partially, completely, or not taxed at all. Some of these are Dearness allowance, House Rent Allowance, Medical Allowance, Leave Travel Allowance, and many more.
  • Gratuity: A lump sum amount paid by the company to the employee that is retiring.
  • Employee provident fund: An employee-benefit scheme where both the employer and the employee puts a certain fixed amount of money, from where a fixed amount of deductions can be made after retirement mostly.
  • Professional tax: The tax levied on employee’s salary by the state government, which is a maximum of Rs. 2500.
  • Perquisites: Generally non-monetary, these are certain benefits that the employees enjoy over and above their salary based on their position within the company.

What is an Employee provident fund, and how is PF calculated?

This focuses on post-retirement schemes and benefits. EPF is compulsory for Indian organisations under the “The Employees’ Provident Fund and Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1952”. A minimum of 10%-12% of the basic salary of the employee is deducted and deposited in the employee provident fund. In case the employee is a woman, she needs to pay only 8% of her salary to the provident fund for the first 3 years thereafter, which becomes 10%-12%, whereas the employer still needs to contribute 12%.

The employee can voluntarily contribute more than 12%, but the employer is under no obligation to match it. Here, the employer’s contribution is limited to a maximum of Rs. 1800, i.e., 12% of 15000, so even if the employee’s salary is more than 15000, the maximum that the employer can contribute is Rs. 1800.

The statutory compliances associated with PF contribution are that the contribution made by the employer is divided into two parts. Employee provident fund (EPF), which is 3.67% of the 12% contribution, and Employee Pension Scheme (EPS), which is 8.33% of the 12% contribution.

For example, if the employee’s salary is Rs. 10000

Employer’s contribution (in Rs.)

Employee’s contribution (in Rs.)


367 (3.67% of 10000)

1200 (12% of 10000)


833 (8.33% of 10000)



What is Employee State Insurance(ESI)?

A contributory fund, where both the employee and the employer contribute to form a healthcare insurance fund for the employee. Employees’ State Insurance Corporation manages them as per the rules mentioned in the Indian ESI Act of 1948. This scheme provides both cash benefits and healthcare benefits to the employees. Anywhere 10 or more people are employed eligible for ESI.

Eligibility: All the employees who have a monthly income of less than Rs. 21000 are eligible for ESIC contribution. Employees having a daily average earning of up to Rs. 176 are also exempted. ESI is calculated on gross salary.

The employee contributes 0.75% of his/her gross salary, whereas the employer contributes 3.25% of the gross salary, and the employer submits the total contribution within 15 days of the last day of the month.  

For example, let the gross pay of the employee be Rs. 10000.

Percentage of gross salary


Employer’s contribution (in Rs.)


0.0325*10000 = 325

Employee’s contribution (in Rs.)


0.0075*10000 = 75

                                                         Total contribution:                                                                     400

Now, the contribution periods are divided into two groups of 6 months each.

  • 1st April to 30th September, for which the cash benefit period is 1st January to 30th June of the following year.
  • 1st October to 31st March, for which the cash benefit period is 1st July to 31st December.

Now, if the salary of any employee increases beyond the maximum limit of Rs. 21000 in between the ongoing contribution period, then the contribution for the remaining months are calculated on the new amount, till the end of the contribution period, and after that if the salary still surpasses the maximum limit, the employee is not eligible for ESI.

Pay Structure Template

The most basic salary structure of any company encompasses:

Employee’s name


Total gross salary



Basic salary






Conveyance allowance


Medical allowance


Special allowance






Total deductions

Contribution to employee pf


Professional tax






Net payable salary


So, pay structures are of utmost importance to any organisation and serve to attract, nurture and retain good employees in the long run. It shows that the company values the employee’s hard work and rewards the employees handsomely.  

10 Reasons HR Is Important to an Organization

HR is an indispensable part of any organization. It is the most important wing that keeps every aspect of a firm connected and thus ensures that the business is running smoothly and efficiently. From every employee’s go-to person during the time of distress, to be the person who resolves any mishaps happening in the office, HR is the answer to all the problems. Employees are the backbone of any organization, but who keeps the employees happy and satisfied with their work? Yes, you guessed it correctly! It’s the HR! So, a happy HR equals a happy workforce equals a happy organization equals growth and success for the firm. So, HR’s contribution to any firm’s success is immense.

HR’s importance in any firm ranges from strategic planning to the bottom-line workers. Thus, HRs provide an all-around contribution to the organization. So, let us zoom in on certain areas, where HRs contribute to aid in an organization’s success.

1. HRs plays the key role in hiring and thereby securing a good workforce for the company:

HR works closely with the hiring managers and they play an important role in the company’s hiring process. They conduct the entire process and make sure that the company hires the best candidates suited to its needs and requirements. Scrutinizing the candidate to make sure he/she will be an asset to the company is just one of the many beneficial aspects of HR.

2. HR also aids recruitment and Onboarding of candidates:

From declaring the job applications open to scrutinizing the CVs, to releasing the shortlists, to interviews and finally hiring someone, an HR does it all! Even after the recruitment process winds up, HR is responsible for the smooth onboarding of new hires, making sure that they are accustomed to the company’s policies and practices.

3. HR makes sure that the new joiners receive the best development and training session:

All the new hires undergo training and development sessions to introduce them and make them proficient in the kind of work that they are supposed to perform. HRs supervise the entire training process so that employees are proficiently trained for leadership and management roles to be taken up in the future and can lead the firm in the right direction.

4. HRs help in keeping the employee satisfaction levels high in an organization:

Everyone knows that a happy workforce is a sign of a healthy firm and a healthy firm is more prone to be successful in the future. So, it is HR’s job to make sure that the employees are satisfied in the organization and thus maintaining a good employer-employee relationship. They conduct surveys, focus group discussions, and interactions to make sure that the workforce is happy. All the discussions related to the employee’s compensation are also handled by HR.

5. HRs control the budget of an organization:

The HR team of any organization helps the firm to strictly work in its allocated budget by reducing excessive and unwanted spending. They devise ways by which cost cuts can be implemented so that the company can save money which will be helpful for the company in the long run. Negotiating salaries, benefits, and packages also comes under HR’s purview and they make sure that they efficiently use their negotiating skills.

6. HRs also aid in the strategic management of the firm:

HRs help in improving the bottom line of an organization by inducing its knowledge regarding how the workforce helps in the success of an organization. Many HRs specialize in strategic management too and thus take part in the company’s corporate discussions regarding which projects to take on and how to act further based on current trends going on in the market.

7. HRs makes the firm a tech-driven one:

Every aspect of a firm is being replaced by technology. So, technology is the new bread and butter for every firm. HRs identify and therefore implement the various technological needs of the employees by making the firm more tech-savvy and thus contributing to its success. Some of the digital tools adapted by HRs are online learning platforms, online payroll software, surveys for the development process, and many more.

8. HRs play a major role in a company’s growth:

HRs play the role of strategic advisor in case of any mergers, acquisitions, expansions, and even downsizing. It also helps in succession planning so that companies can work smoothly even if some unexpected situations arise. Conducting talent reviews and thus identifying potential in-house candidates can help planning for leadership roles in advance.

9. HRs are the go-to person for resolving a conflict:

Workplace conflicts are a common affair, but this should not have an impact on a company’s performance. So, even before it becomes a huge issue, HR sweeps in and saves the day. Thus, resolving conflicts helps to motivate employees and imparts a positive zeal on the workforce to work harder and thus provide better returns to the firm.

10. HRs moderate company’s as well as the employee’s performance:

Performance management is one of the key roles of the HR team. After acquiring the right talent, it is HR’s responsibility to check on the employee and deliberately provide active feedback related to his/her performance so that they can improve it continuously. This ensures that employees are not stuck in jobs that they don’t want and thus their skills and abilities are not wasted. Thus, exploiting an employee’s abilities to their full potential so that the company can reap benefits from it is the way HRs contribute to the firm’s success.

There are reasons why HRs are called the employee’s best friend. A company is what its employees portray it to be and managing the employees efficiently is HR’s job. A good HR team is every company’s top priority as they help in making the most out of the employees by using the right resources. Thus, a successful company depends on a strong HR team and must value all the insights provided by them which will help them in growing and succeeding.

Onsite Childcare: How Does It Work?

On-site daycare facilities are a growing trend in many workplaces. It is a benefit that is provided by the employer for employees who are balancing both professional and personal lives. This facility serves as a boon for new parents, who can look after their child, even while working. This facility has an age-bar to this. This facility can be provided by the employer at a nominal fee or even free. This is an initiative carried out by organizations to retain their top talent, who are also working parents, and serves as an aim to integrate both their personal and professional lives.

What is an on-site daycare facility?

In this ever-evolving world, where people are working tirelessly to provide themselves with a comfortable life, working parents often find it difficult to handle their newborn while working. So, onsite daycare facilities serve as a solution to this problem. Onsite childcare facilities provide affordable, top-quality childcare facilities for children of working parents within the workplace itself! Having onsite facilities not only reduces absenteeism amongst employees, increases their morale, but also increases their productivity. It serves as a measure that says to the employees that the organization values them and thinks about how to aid them.

Why should companies provide onsite daycare facilities for employees?

Having an onsite daycare facility within an organization makes it more appealing, increases its brand value, serves as additional perks for the employees, and also helps the firm in achieving its long-term goals. So, some of the reasons as to why should companies provide an onsite daycare facility for employees are mentioned below:

  • It is something that a current lot of job seekers demand

Young millennials and gen Z are on a job hunt in today’s time. Though they may not be parents yet, they seem to have done a good amount of future planning and an organization that provides childcare facilities is on top of their lists. So, it helps the employer in attracting good talent.

  • It is a great way to show that the employees are a valuable asset to the firm

Having an onsite facility sends a clear message to the employees that both their professional and personal lives are valued by the company and they are doing as much as they can to help them in acing both. This in turn motivates the employees to perform better and repay the trust that the company has shown in them.

  • It boosts employee’s morale, dedication and thus increases their productivity

By reducing the separation anxiety that new parents have, automatically increases their concentration on the job at hand by helping them stay more focused without any stress of whether their young one is properly looked after or not.

  • It offers flexibility to the employees

Having onsite daycare facilities also provides flexibility to the employees in their way of working, where they can check on their younger ones as and when required and work accordingly. This also instills trust, autonomy, and kindness among the employees.

  • It promotes equality of gender in the workplace

Onsite daycare is not only for women employees but also for male ones. More and more fathers are enjoying becoming hands-on parents and helping their partners during the early stage by taking care of their new ones. Also, with increasing women in the workforce, taking care of their needs, also in senior roles, helps to retain them.

What are some of the advantages of providing a daycare facility?

Onsite childcare facilities have tons of advantages both for the employer and the employee. Some of the advantages for the employer are as follows:

  • Enhances employee loyalty: Providing an onsite daycare facility is a great way to show the employees that the company values them and thus the employee becomes loyal to the firm. It also makes an attractive benefits package to attract more employees.
  • Serves as a performance asset: Studies have revealed that having onsite facilities increases employee concentration and in turn increases returns to the firm. So, it acts as a performance booster for employees.
  • Improves the brand name of the firm: Providing a daycare facility at the workplace is a thoughtful initiative and helps the firm to increase its brand value by taking such steps by creating a happy and caring work environment.
  • A socially reliable firm: Taking such a step, projects the company’s image as a socially responsible firm, which gives great importance to the work-life balance of its employees.
  • Increased recruitment and retention: Providing daycare facilities increases retention rates of employees by making them feel valued and since it is becoming the topmost needs of job seekers, it also enhances the talent pool from which employees can be hired.
  • Tax credits: By providing onsite daycare facilities, firms can also claim tax credits.    

Advantages of onsite daycare facilities for the employees are:

  • Working parents generally do not have time to look after the child all day, so it provides an easy solution at the workplace.
  • Being in the workplace, parents do not face separation anxiety and can have a better balance.
  • Parents can go and visit their young ones anytime they desire.
  • Onsite facilities are comparatively less costly and are included in the employee’s benefits package.
  • Getting a place in the firm’s onsite daycare is easier as compared to some outside daycare.
  • Onsite daycare schedules are generally synced with the business schedules and thus they have fewer hassles.

What are some of the cons of having an onsite daycare facility?

An onsite daycare facility has many advantages, no doubt, but it comes with some cons as well. So, the disadvantages of having a daycare facility in the workplace are:

  • Cost of building a daycare system: Building a childcare facility requires a huge amount of investment in licensing, additional space requirements, hiring of staff, daycare certifications, and toys and equipment to take care of the babies.
  • Distraction to the parents: Having their child with them on the premises, the parents might continue to worry about them all the time and may lose focus and not be able to give their 100% to the projects they were working on.
  • Discrimination between employees: People using the facility for their single child might feel discriminated against people who are using the facility for their 2 or 3 children as the benefits may not be evenly distributed.

Childcare facilities at the workplace are for the betterment of the employees. Having an onsite childcare facility is becoming more and more important even from a strategic point of view. Even the employees feel valued and they want to forge long-term relationships with the firms. It provides emotional stability to the working parents and thus they tend to perform better at their jobs. The cons are there too, but the pros have a major lasting impact and will provide the workplace with a better environment to work in.

7 Steps to Successful Succession Planning

Succession planning is something that every firm must plan as it is a very crucial decision upon which the future of the firm depends. Correctly executed succession planning can help the firm to achieve its business goals whereas an incorrect one can serve as the firm’s most dreaded nightmare. So, careful implementation of succession planning is one of the key pillars on which the firm’s future resides and thus should be treated as number one on the priority list. However small any organization is, it will not work if it is not equipped with the right skilled people at the right positions and they do not upskill themselves with the changing times.

What is succession planning?

Whenever there is a vacancy at a key job position in the firm, maybe because the employee left for better job opportunities, retired, transferred, promoted, or passed away, then that key position needs to be filled on an urgent basis. This is where succession planning is required. It is a strategy of passing on the positions of leadership to the new person who will be stepping into the shoes of his/her predecessor. This leadership position pertains to any job role in the firm, not limited to only the top-most positions. It also entails the strategy of passing down the ownership of the company to an individual or a group of individuals. It is kind of a contingent plan that every firm must have in place, to keep up with uncertainties and help keep their business afloat.

An empty position in any firm cannot stay like that for a long time as it is a loss-making proposition for the firm itself. So, the new person that would take up the position, can either be someone from the firm itself, making his/her way up the ladder, or the company can hire some fresh talent to bring into a new perspective for the job role. After identifying the key leaders, the firm must groom the talent according to the job profile so that it can perform according to requirements.

What are some of the benefits of succession planning?

Succession planning is an act of carefully strategizing for the future, requires lots of work and thus it is an important task at hand. Benefits of this process are:

  • It helps in keeping the employees motivated by keeping the avenues open for them for career progression.
  • The generation of baby boomers is at a stage of retirement and soon a huge number of vacancies are going to crop up, so new leaders are required who can succeed them.
  • This helps the firm’s management to keep a close track of its employees’ work so that the correct person can be called up for the leadership position as and when required, thus helping in identifying the correct leaders.
  • Internal succession planning also aids in the reduction of hiring costs.
  • Helps the company in making a long-term strategy.
  • It also helps the firm to track the correct time and need for corporate knowledge transfer amongst peers.
  • Helps to make the employees more agile and adaptive to continuously changing requirements and thus upskill themselves continuously.
  • It also helps in maintaining the brand identity by grooming an internal talent for the leadership role rather than hiring new talent from outside.
  • Helps in providing correct guidance to the employees from the beginning by assigning them, mentors.
  • Helps the leaders and the employees to share the firm’s values and mission.
  • External succession planning helps to bring fresh ideas, new networks, additional skills, and knowledge.
  • A well-thought succession plan also helps build the investor’s confidence in the company.

How to do succession planning?

Succession planning is a well-thought process and it has been divided into 7 crucial steps. These are:

STEP 1 : Identification of key job positions and skills

As a firm, taking a deep look into the business model and identifying the job positions that are essential for the company’s performance and the skills that are required for each of the job positions, is the most crucial step and thus forms the base on which the entire succession planning depends.

STEP 2 : Identification of company’s need both long-term and short-term

After identifying the key positions, the next that the firm must look at is which of the identified job positions are vacant or soon-to-empty in near future, so that selection and grooming of employees according to the job role can be done.

STEP 3 : Start screening for potential candidates in case of an internal hire

Scanning the workforce for a suitable candidate to be the successor, by carefully evaluating the employees, should be done as promoting an employee would involve less work and cost as the employee will already be comfortable with the company’s workings, values, and missions and thus will be able to fit the position much easily after training.

STEP 4 : Start the recruitment process

If an internal hire is not a feasible option for the job position, then fresh talent needs to be hired from outside and has to undergo the entire recruitment process and training. 

STEP 5 : Appoint the new candidate as the “Successor”

After going through the tedious process of screening, interviewing, case studies, and many more, the firm finally decides upon a candidate that has been chosen as the successor for a particular job role. Ensuring that the candidate is a good fit for the company both cultural and technical is a very crucial task.

STEP 6 : Handing over the job

The process of handing over the job is the most important step in succession planning. It serves as the manifestation of all the hopes, skills, and knowledge of the chosen one into the practical field. This is the stage where the successor steps into the new shoes and has on-the-job learning from the peers, team leads, and predecessor. The handover period must not be too long or short so that neither the successor is half-baked nor he/she is not being able to get out of the shadow of the predecessor.

STEP 7 : Documenting the entire transaction

Documenting the entire procedure is important for future succession planning to go on smoothly without any hiccups. The documentation must include the skills, knowledge, demands from the candidate for the particular position, the entire hiring process, the training provided, and the issues that cropped up in between the entire process.

Succession planning is required by every company to keep their business running. It is the job of HR to keep the succession planning documents handy and always be on the lookout so that the firm does not shift behind in this continuous race of hiring and retaining new talent. Both the internal and external hire for succession planning has their pros and cons. So, what do you think, which source of succession planning is better?

How to conduct a background check for employees?

Finding the right fit for your organization is a difficult yet satisfying process. Employees that will add value to the firm, enhance the returns, make the workplace productive, and improve the team dynamics are always welcome. But if the new joinee lacks these important skills, it is a very risky investment for the firm. The only way to ensure this is to have a thorough background check of the employees before joining so that few other aspects of the employee’s personality can be explored and the candidate can be groomed accordingly. The correct way to do the background check is through legally compliant third-party providers, where it can be done at two points over the employee’s stint in the organization.

Beginning of the article

Background checks not only provide information on whether the person will be a valuable asset to the company but also provides information regarding the person’s past employment details, criminal records, credit history, any information that can have a direct impact on the person’s employability with the said firm. 

Background checks are of 2 types. The first is called the “pre-employment background check”, where the background check is done on new employees, before they join the firm, to make sure that all the details furnished by the employee are correct. The second kind of background check is done during the employee’s tenure at the office. This generally happens if some kind of concerning facts regarding the employee has come into the foreground, or if it is listed in the company’s official policies.

Do employee background checks have any benefits?

Companies hire third-party service providers for doing these checks, they spend a lot on this procedure, so definitely background checks have their perks. Some of these evident benefits are:

  • The optimal fit between the job position and the employee: Having a correct idea about the person’s personality gives the employer the confidence that they are hiring the correct person for the job. For example, a person with a good credit rating and financial scoring can be a better fit for the finance role as compared to a person having none of these.
  • Say NO to bad hires: A bad hire costs a lot to the company, so background checks help the company in reducing that.
  • Reduction in legal costs and liabilities: Companies can reduce their insurance costs and any kind of lawsuits by hiring reliable people, not having any past criminal records.
  • Reduction in employee attrition: The company carefully does background research and then only hires people who are a good fit for the firm where their interests align, thus reducing employee attrition.
  • Workplace safety: Checking the criminal history of the potential joinee, correct decisions can be taken whether to hire that person or not, thus reducing workplace violence or theft.

What are some of the things that are included in employee background checks?

The employer, if introducing a third-party service, for the hiring process, the employee must be informed beforehand, and written consent of the person in question must be taken, before starting the entire process. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), sets the rules for conducting the background research and the entire findings must be documented as a report. The process of background check is comprehensive and some of the must include in a background check are:

  • Education details: To verify whether the education details for school, college, master’s degree are true or not, this forms one of the most primary boxes that need to be ticked during a background check.
  • Criminal records: One of the most important things to maintain the safety of the workplace, required for jobs about security. All local, national, international records are checked.
  • Past employment verification: For validating the employee’s past job experiences, his/her workplace behaviour, past achievements, skill-set harboured by the candidate.
  •  Credit checks: Reviewing a person’s credit history, gives an overall view regarding loans, payment history, unpaid bills, bankruptcies, and many more. This becomes extremely important for candidates who want to secure jobs in some financial segments.
  • Driving records: This gives information regarding the mobility of candidates, suspensions, and driving history.
  • Drug screening: Careful research on the drug history of the candidate (use of illicit drugs) will help maintain a much safer and productive environment.
  •  Sex offender list: An important area to look upon to maintain a safer work environment.
  •  Medical records: Having a clear understanding of the employee’s medical limitations is an essential part of offering the job to the candidate.

How to do background checks?

Some rules must be in place before the organization goes for a background check of its employees or recent hires. So, some of the mandatory steps in going forward with this procedure are:

  •  Have a consistent company policy regarding the entire procedure: Having a well-documented policy regarding the procedure reduces confusion and the entire process goes on smoothly and also all the legal requirements about the entire procedure become clear.
  • Getting legal advice and checking with the company’s insurance: Not all information is to be unearthed while doing a background check, so this can land the firm in some legal soups. So, to avoid this, the firm must always contact a lawyer that can guide the firm in the right direction and help avoid such sticky situations.
  • Notify the applicants/employees before going on with the procedure: The employee must give written consent for some kind of background research that the company does and thus this also gives the candidates a fair warning and can also help in eliminating certain candidates who know that they will get disqualified once the background check process is in place.
  • Use third-party background check services that are FCRA compliant: The FCRA provides clear, written rules of what can and cannot be included in a background check, and thus hiring third-party services that are FCRA compliant is a safer bet.
  • Conduct the background check and do not form some kind of prejudice regarding the applicant beforehand.
  • Be extremely cautious with the entire process and review the findings: Do not take the process to be a boring mundane routine task and do the process diligently. Even after getting the results, try to get to the bottom of it and not just make up biases in the mind.
  • Give the applicant the chance to clear up the misunderstandings: Not all the information obtained in the background research is correct, give the applicant the chance to clear if any such misunderstanding occurs, and thus it can help the company to save up on a great employee.
  • Save the records: It is pertinent that the company stores the background reports of all the employees for 1 year so that it can serve as tangible proof in case any applicant asks for their report.

It is correctly put that the workforce is the backbone of a good organization. Doing comprehensive background research is a must for every company to raise good and retain good talent, improve the work culture and thus get the maximum return. With informed hiring decisions, any company can reach the pinnacles of success and achieve its business goals.