What’s the Winning Combination for Exceptional Talent Management? An Interview with Soujanya Prakash, Associate VP – HR, Vee Technologies

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According to Soujanya Prakash, Associate VP – HR, Vee Technologies “a balance between human intervention and technology tools is the winning combination for Talent Management.” Read the full interview for her inputs on upskilling for success.

How do you win at talent management?

Talent nationalization does not have to be a confrontational initiative if it is managed as a progressive strategic management process. Attracting talent, focus on employee engagement, satisfaction and retaining employees is the key. At each step of the Talent management process right from on-boarding and induction of employees, nurturing their skills and developing them not only technically but intellectually is our focus. Career progression, creating a sense of accountability, instant recognition are some of the drivers to keep our talent engaged.

What role do you think technology plays in talent management? How can technology bring about a change in the talent management lifecycle?

At Vee Technologies we are passionate about technology in every aspect of talent management, be it introducing simulation based on-boarding and induction, audio and video based HR policies and procedures outlining employee roles and responsibilities, gathering employee ideas through a robust feedback/suggestion management system which has improvised our efficiency multifold. We are always excited about not having products from the rack. We have designed, developed and implemented our own proprietary HR portals and systems to manage end-to-end, the talent pool within the organization. We are proud to have the entire ISO 27001 HR process inbuilt in our system. These eliminate the duplication of checks, helps better manpower planning for talent acquisition processes, automated employee movement process and the automated skill gap analysis.

Our “Vee EMS” is one of our fool proof mechanisms of customized and fully automated exit processes which takes care of the end-to-end exit process right from the time the employee resigns, followed by the exit interview, exit analysis, settlement and final relieving within a span of 36 hours.

While we have moved on to various tools for these purposes, we believe that a balance between human intervention and tools is the winning combination. When the employee joins the organization, there are clear goals, KRAs mapped on to their automated systems, daily tracking in transactional projects and monthly tracking of the performance progression of the employees which happens for other roles. Role based tracking is in progress every month and with the help of that, the performance grading is done on an automated system. This gets consolidated into quarterly scorecards and feedback from HR and supervisors where early interventions with the employee helps them to take their career in the right direction – creating the win-win strategy for the employee and the company.  For the company, it helps in realigning the roles at an earlier stage. The entire monitoring of the employee from a contribution perspective links to learning the management system too and wherever training intervention is required during the performance review, we build skill enhancement dynamically and not just depend on annual calendars.

By building all these technology enabled systems, HR cost has come down drastically by 8%-10%. Efficiency is the first thing which is looked at; quality, productivity is given lot of importance. Also values which employees bring in are all integrated into our automated system.

What are the steps you take as a leader to embrace innovative disruption?

From a talent acquisition stand point, a lot can be done through artificial intelligence in picking up the right resource for the organization. We have been working on automation of the talent acquisition section for a few years now and our AI team has built in all the intelligence that recruitment specialists would put in for identifying the right talent for a role. So for example, for mapping resources and looking at behavioral aspects etc. recruitment gets refined year-on-year based on the intelligence that we have built in the system and whatever intelligence we have built, how it has impacted the ROI and if there is anything more that needs to be done to enhance the AI system is evaluated regularly. We are also now looking at automating the decision making process with technology.

What are the strategies you employ to upskill your workforce?

For workforce upskilling right from the hiring stage, we look at the competency need and map the competency of the candidate. From there, we look at the gap analysis that comes through technology intervention and see the immediate gap that has to be filled. That’s how we do a quick skilling session to bridge the immediate gap.

For the future roadmap, we would have for an employee considering the business growth of the organization; we map all of that through technology and see what additional skill we require for the individual and build all our training interventions around that. Once the training intervention is done, the effectiveness of training is continuously monitored. Sometimes training could have an immediate impact; it could show impact after a quarter or after a year or so. We measure effectiveness at different stages. All this comes with the help of technology intervention & analytics that we have built into our learning management system. This is the constant process right from where the employee started. We have the entire track and data of how the employee has been upskilling over several years.

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