My Talk at Rajagiri Business School

Yesterday I gave a talk in Rajagiri Business School, Cochin on “Overview of HR Processes in Organizations”. This talk was organised Rajagiri Business Schoolby SHRM in partnership with Rajagiri Business School and it’s an attempt by the team to address unemployability by brining professionals and students to one platform. Having seen unemployability first hand during my campus recruitment days, I was quick to accept the opportunity to play my part in helping students of Rajagiri College become business ready.

I was careful to select content that I felt I could cover better than an academician or text books, bringing in my experience, statistics and Industry benchmarks in India. I covered the following topics:

  • Talent Supply Chain: Acquisition, retention, Development and exit
  • Staff type: Permanent, Contingent, and SOW – Difference, benefits, difference
  • Talent Motivation: Daniel Pink’s views on Motivation where he says job design must include Autonomy, Mastery, and Purpose.
  • Modern learning organisation and intricacies
  • Overview on Indian HR Outsourcing Industry

But before I could touch upon these topics, I wanted to gauge the current understanding of the students on what HR brings to an organisation. Thus a small plot was arranged were I said a company decides to downsize its HR team to unsustainable levels starting with the CHRO. The company starts to show cracks in its performance and eventually collapses. I requested to students to list what starts to fail in order of sequence. And here is a sample answer I received from the students:

  • Talent acquisition stops
  • Employee engagement reduces
  • Conflict is not managed right resulting in high profile exits
  • Performance appraisals stop and employees start to quit
  • Internal communication from management stops and there is no sense of direction
  • Payroll errors creep into system
  • HR technology landscape
  • And a few more tactical points…

I was quite impressed with student’s ability to articulate these and I later added other functions such as learning and the gambit of HR Strategy that is expected to get affected. I took each of these points and informed the students on what’s latest buzz in the market on each of these HR topics.

After I covered these topics individually, I started with my presentation which starts with talent supply chain. Since my expertise is in recruitment, I dealt with the whole gambit of recruitment and informed students on each source of talent and their pros and cons and limitations. Then I discussed statistics in recruitment: source wise contribution, funnel etc and took questions as and when they came.

Students were very keen to understand how executive search assignments are executed, so I spent some time on it and also shared names of top executive search firms for Googling them later.

Once I completed the talent acquisition I moved to talent engagement, where showed them the video by Daniel Pink on Employee Motivation and connected that to job design and how we could as HRs do a better job of managing motivation among employees intrinsically. I wanted to cover Gamification but decided against it. I spoke about benefits of having a clearly articulated Employee Value Proposition and clinging HR interventions in congruence with it.

Since I wanted to cover consulting methods and challenges with students, I took a case of a company that in recent past had experienced high attrition. We discussed how a team of consultants would approach this issue and resolve it. Students were forthcoming with suggestions and we were able to proceed very analytically to solve the client challenge.

The only surprise was that students did not have much idea on HR analytics. Since I personally believe this is an area of top growth opportunity, I felt students should be motivated to explore this field. I briefed them about how companies use dashboards to understand performance and bring in HR interventions. We discussed the analytics maturity models: Dashboard à advanced reporting à advanced analytics à predictive analytics. I could not deal with this part much but perhaps the introduction would raise enough curiosity among students to go on their own exploring the field better.

Over all it was a very fulfilling experience for me. I find students of Rajagiri very energetic and keen on learning. I most certainly find them better prepared to face the challenges of corporate world. I wish them all the luck!

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