Today’s workforce lives and breathes technology: Saikumar Shamanna, Chief People Officer, Mobileum

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Read the full interview with Saikumar Shamanna, Chief People Officer, Mobileum for his insights on how technology is changing the talent management landscape.

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

Managing the people function of a technology driven product organization requires one to integrate the disruptions that are happening into meaningful opportunities for our people.

As an example, we enable our team members to develop expertise in proven technologies that have been successfully used in other industries – Blockchain used in the Fintech Industry is now moving rapidly to the Telecom industry.

From an HR standpoint, the same thing applies by way of adopting newer practices/systems and changing the mindset of the HR team to bring about agility and simplicity in what we do and be highly responsive to our people.

What are the strategies you employ to upskill your workforce?

As compared to the past, the need to upskill is pretty much, a given in today’s industry –
HR needs to ensure that the required enablers for upskilling by way of mentoring, skunk work assignments, e-learning are made available to people.

While doing so, the need to ensure that there is good work life balance is critical so that deliverables on the job do not get compromised.

How do you win at talent management?
In the technology industry today, I believe that most of the motivational drivers today are around purposeful work that people do on a daily basis and staying relevant with the required toolsets. As long as HR programs are designed around these, the odds of success are quite good. While we do so, the need for simplicity and flexibility becomes quite important while we manage talent.

What role do you think culture plays in increasing efficiency at work?

I believe that culture plays a pretty important role in increasing efficiency at work, the current workforce is better informed, more expressive and adept at garnering insights in a faster manner, therefore the onus of placing higher responsibilities without second guessing their abilities and trusting them much earlier in the game becomes crucial. A culture that recognizes talent quickly and places trust on their abilities will go a long way in increasing work efficiency.

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

Today’s workforce lives and breathes technology, barring the compliance and documentation requirements (which in anyway are adapting quite well to the digital paradigm), all people intervention transactions are undergoing change in a significant way, Webpages to apps, emails to collaboration tools like Slack, apps for expense management, attendance management including geo tagging, online mentoring and coaching are great examples of how technology is bringing about change in talent management.

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