Special Article (October-2017)

 Special Articles

Pick of the Month

Gaurav Sharma

Designation : -   Director - Human Resource

Organization : -  Gionee India, New Delhi


HR should work on employee branding to develop emotional connect

Q. How do you critically evaluate the HR practices in your industry sector? Do you also feel the skill shortage in your industry?
GS : The business world is constantly evolving with emergent strategies and new technologies. Organizations which have a workforce that understands and adapts to the new emerging trends are the one that succeed in the long run. The business today can no longer be running as a stagnant association with employees that is based on the culture of working in silos and is extremely hierarchical in nature. Hence, today's digitized organizations must design and adapt to change, dynamism and innovation through technology.
Q. How you plan to overcome and meet challenges particularly keeping in view the emergence of automation, artificial intelligence and fast redundancy of skills?
GS : It is imperative that while we, as HR leaders are proud to be holding our current positions and hiring new talent into our organizations; our determination shouldn't just stop there. To accomplish the same while also arm our workforce with the latest technology, we as HR leaders need to ensure our organizations are embracing mobility solutions in various manners.
Furthermore, we at Gionee India believe in the overall 360-degree development to ensure a well-connected and functioning team. Steps are taken to make sure that every individual find home in their work place so their performance isn't hampered.
Q. Any HR practices of Gionee which are distinct and innovative, you would like to share?
GS : At Gionee we promote the owners and not renter's philosophy which says that each one of us, who work for the organization, owns it and responsible for the bit what we contribute. With the current average age of employee being 33 years and as a 4-year-old organization we have grown to 400 in this short tenure, needless to say we are young & dynamic team who act as owner with no fear, this sense comes to each of us because we know the emotional and financial implication of our decision which is made with a sense of empathy towards all our stakeholder. That's the way we get things 'DONE'.
We are always on the lookout for creative and collaborative visionaries to work and be part of our company. We always welcome talent that is smart, hungry, and adept at solving difficult problems. Our young talent initiative was developed in line with the company's vision to attract and foster talent at a young age. Through the young talent initiative, we hire management trainees, who work in different functions and markets, depending upon their ability. The first batch currently in roll consists of 10 students for a period of one year. Post that the students will be appointed as assistant manager once they complete year long GYT stint.
We have also established an internal organizational structure which seeks to achieve stability and success through centralized control and up - front planning. Based on a performance evaluation system, which was introduced in April this year, we introduced this system with the objective to not make the organization vertical or extremely hierarchical in nature. In order to provide a healthy and enjoyable work environment, the company has instituted various employee engagement activities like skip level meetings with the CEO and thank you cards within the organization for recognition. We also provide various benefits like paternity leave, adoption leave, anniversary leave, extraordinary leave in case of prolonged illness.
Q. How does your work culture at the workplace help the company achieve its strategy of growth and innovation, efficiency and talent management?
GS : Our attrition has been less than 2% since the time we started our operations in India, which has been possible because we understand and value the efforts that our masterminds are bringing to Indian operations on a daily basis. We came up with a point based evaluation system where the employees are given points on the task that they are undertaking on day to day basis. The task is measured in the terms of skills, effort, training and knowledge that are put into the task. Since the introduction of this point based evaluation system, a more driven and energetic task force was witnessed owing it all to the measures taken.
Q. What kind of initiatives you take to ensure a culture of diversity and inclusion?
GS : We go a step further by using referrals widely while hiring new candidates which help us create a pool of talented and compatible employees. While hiring members of our future workforce, we pay special emphasis to ensure the candidates pass in all the four aspects that we look out for, D.O.N.E., which expand to dynamic & young, ownership & accountability towards the task assigned, no fear of dealing with challenges and empathy towards each other; hence adding the right skill set to our workforce. 
We lay special emphasis on recruiting young talent into the organization who come up with ideas that are fresh and dynamic. Their ability to work according to ongoing trends is rather commendable. However, it is important that the fresh blood is trained under the leadership and guidance of senior mentors who draw their wisdom from their experience. Creating a confluence, we host the young talent program, wherein we enrol 10 students for a year and train them under various functions. Post undergoing training by mentors these young minds are absorbed by us for the positions of assistant managers based on their performance in the training stint. 
Q. What kind of leader you are? What blows you up at work place?
GS : I would like to think of myself as a democratic leader, who is interested in feedback, and demonstrates the valour to deal with basic issues without losing control. Likewise, I trust a pioneer is dependably a group individual. Furthermore, today, I will be upbeat if my team would help me in picking the best. No one can survive in his own world; one should acknowledge and consider others' perspective. I think tolerating and pondering helpful feedback is a standout amongst the most imperative aptitudes that I have procured in my professional voyage.
Q. What are the opportunities and threats emerging in Indian HR function?
GS : The pressure for performance and the ability that drives it - and related risks - is probably going to increment as business environment turns out to be more dynamic, driven by globalization, network, and mobility. Senior pioneers don't just have harder choices to make, yet new sorts of choices too - and even the little ones can possibly course with unintended outcomes all through an association. Leaders who set aside the opportunity to see how these patterns may influence their associations can set themselves in a place to win. The individuals who settle on their choices in detachment, without the advantage of being connected with discussions with other leaders, may open their associations to outsized dangers. Numerous organizations are as of now having these pivotal discussions, perceiving that this is the ideal opportunity to stretch out beyond the patterns by settling on more informed decisions. For the organizations that haven't, this may be the perfect time for beginning.
Q. Any three things which you want HR should do to attain recognition among internal and external stakeholders?
GS : The current business environment demands HR to be more business oriented and involved into decision, that cannot happen until the HR managers has a great understanding of business, hence HR needs to be updated on Business statistics and while taking any decision should consider data facts. 
While acting as a Human Resource Business Partner (HRBP), HR should also ensure employee engagement in the organization as to increase productivity, execute business strategies, improve the company's performance as well as employee's performance. When employees are engaged at work, they feel a connection with the organization.
Also, employee branding is an important aspect as they are the people who can make the brand come alive for the customers. Now why it is important? Because it's the best way to help employees to make a powerful emotional connection to the product or service they sell. Without that connection, it may be they don't believe in the brand and feel disengaged or hostile towards the company.