IT Cos Hire More Women in Tech Roles

NEW PARADIGM Companies bridge the gender gap across levels through hiring as well as initiatives such as leadership development programmes

Indian and multinational companies in the information technology sector are seeing a steady growth in number of women in technical roles, reflecting the impact of their efforts to increase diversity .

Traditionally , the IT industry has been haunted by allegations of lack of diversity , gender gap being the major one. However, companies are now making a conscious effort to bridge the gender gap across levels and the initiatives they are taking are geared towards attracting and retaining the best of women professionals.

Recently , Google in its diversity report said 21% of tech hires last year were women, boosting the overall number of women in technical roles by 1%.“Though we still have a long way to go, we’re seeing some early progress,“ the company said in a Google+ post.

Companies like Capgemini and Tech Mahindra too admit to having witnessed an increase in the number of women in technical roles. Others such as Infosys, Microsoft and Wipro declined to comment on numbers but said they have introduced a slew of initiatives aimed at nurturing women techies.

At Capgemini, the total female headcount in technical roles has gone up over the past three years with the diver sity ratio increasing to 26% so far in 2015 from 24.2% in 2013 to 25.7% in 2014 .

The company has also hired more women engineers from campus this year at 43.1%, up from 39.2% in 2014.Capgemini has a 26% representation of women in technology roles and an overall representation of close to 28% women in India.

Some of its efforts to improve women’s representation at senior levels include engagement on social platforms, creating communities, additional incentive payout to vendor partners for diversity and hiring women in a specific business unit or for critical skills, women leadership development programmes and building women’s presence beyond their circle of influence.

“While we believe in attracting the most suitable talent from the available pool, we continually build an enabling work culture for our women,“ said Gayathri Ramamurthy , India diversity and inclusion lead at Capgemini. “Our overall diversity percentage has consistently been on the rise and this naturally reflects in women in technology roles,“ she added. The company does not, however, believe in setting targets for hiring women as that can lead to impacting quality of hire or a forced method of achieving the same.

Others such as Tech Mahindra have set a target to increase the gender diversity to 30% across the organisation.The company currently has 26.5% women in tech roles and 28% overall. In addition to this, it has been hiring 50% of women graduates who are freshers from colleges and universities.

“Optimising the capabilities and leveraging the strengths of our women employees will serve as a strategic differentiator for us. Building women leaders by enabling them with opportunities to unleash their potential and contribute to business success is a key focus area at Tech Mahindra,“ said Sucharita Palepu, global head -people policies and practices at Tech Mahindra.

Adds Richard Lobo, head of employee relations at Infosys, “We are witnessing positive signs in this direction… We also believe in hiring the best talent that will bring in diverse skills, backgrounds and understanding, to boost our business and economic performance.“

In October, The Women of Color magazine honoured 13 Infos honoured 13 Infoscions with the `Women of Color in Technology’ awards that recognises and honours the exceptional achievements of women who excel in science, technology, engineering and mathematics in the US. About 35.1% of its total workforce comprises women.

Wipro hires an equal number of men and women engineers from campuses for technical roles, said Priyanka Sudarshan, general manager, human resources. The company recently launched the `Women in Technology’ initiative to offer mentoring and peer group support for women employees who want to pursue a career in technology .

Others such as Microsoft India are consistently adopting new approaches to enhance the diversity ratio both within the organisation and the industry. Over the years, Microsoft has undertaken various initiatives to reduce skill shortage and gender imbalance in the technology sector.

Last year, the company launched an initiative called `Women in Tech’ aimed at developing the potential of aspiring women IT professionals. Through Women in Tech Summits, hackathons and camps, the programme allows engagement with women across the country at various educational levels to build and boost their interest in pursuing a career in the IT industry.

“India has recently witnessed a steady increase in female enrolment in IT fields… However, a large number of women workers are entry-level and present in certain sectors, such as BPO and IT-enabled services. This is why we are focused on enhancing the diversity ratio in India’s IT sector, for we believe women in IT can have a strong business impact,“ said Rohit Thakur, head of human resources, Microsoft India.

Source: Economic Times

Date: 16th June 2015

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Centre Proposes Stringent Appraisal System for All Public Sector Banks

Move is part of overhaul that the govt is seeking in performance framework followed by bank

The government has proposed a stringent appraisal system at public sector banks, aiming to infuse efficiency and transparency in the state-owned banking entities after it opened the door to private sector candidates for key posts.

The proposal is part of an overhaul that the government is seeking in the performance framework followed by the banks, officials said. “We are in discussions with the Indian Banks’ Association. The aim is to evolve an appraisal system which covers all efficiency parameters and not just credit growth and reduction in bad loans,“ said a finance ministry official.

The proposed criteria to evaluate performance could, however, have adverse implications for incentives drawn by top executives in the public sector banks. At present, the points-based evaluation of public sector banks is done on parameters such as business growth, current and saving account deposits, priority sector lending, advances to micro, small and medium enterprises, and financial inclusion, among others.

Bank chiefs are further evaluated on strategic planning, innovation and HR development. Both managing directors and CEOs, and executive directors stand to lose their performance incentive if they score less than 80% in the annual appraisal. The evaluation of performance is done by a subcommittee of ARINDAM the board compromising of the nominee of the government and the Reserve Bank of India, and two other directors. The government has initiated a slew of measures including hiring candidates from private sector to clean up state-run banks ever since, in 2014, the Syndicate Bank chairman and managing director SK Jain was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation for allegedly accepting bribes of `. 50 lakh to enhance the credit limit of some companies.

Wide-ranging changes are expected in the statement of intent (SOI) on annual goals that public sector banks have to sign with the government, the official said.

The performance of bank MD & CEO and executive directors will also be appraised based on these changes to SOI. These could include higher weightage to return on equity (RoE) and return on assets (RoA), cost to income ratio and profit per employee, among other parameters. The government has already linked capital infusion in public sector banks with efficiency as part of its strategy to improve performance of the lenders that are laden with nonperforming assets.

“Poor performers may not only suffer on account of capital allocation to the bank but also see a further hit in their incentives,“ the official said. As a result, the bankers will have to go the extra mile to improve the performance of their banks, he said. The IBA has also written to the finance ministry , saying that the appraisal system should be broad based to incentivise bankers. “The government should develop a bank specific appraisal system taking into account its geographical and business spread,“ said MP Shorawala, an independent director with Central Bank of India.

At present, a bank chairman can . 8 lakh as incentive if he get up to ` gets a perfect score in the appraisal matrix. The performance incentive for an official of executive director rank is ` . 6.5 lakh.

Source: Economic Times

Date: 15/6/2015

INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS: A CORE COMPETENCY – Pramod Mahatme

With the emergence of white collar unions and changing bargaining tactics, industrial relations assumes fresh significance for HR professionals

Industrial relations has lost its sheen probably because it does not get adequate focus in the organisation. Not many HR students from the premier institutes opt for this occupa tion and not many management institutions provide adequate focus on this competency and consequently, not many competent professionals are available in the field.

`Sustainable industrial relations’ has always been an area of concern for industry leaders and investors. This has also assumed greater importance in the context of the ambitious `Make in India’ programme through which the government hopes to make India a major hub for global manufacturing. Also, the reemergence of violence in industries makes the topic of IR all the more relevant for discussions and finding lasting solutions. Hence, it is time to realise that IR is one of the most important competencies for people managers.

The people management function was referred to as `Labour Relations’ in the 1960s, `Personnel Manage ment’ in the 1970s and as `Talent Management’ since the 1990s. Analysis will reveal that talent is about demand being more than supply and labour is about supply being more than demand. The pilots in India, in the year 2008 were talent hence, bargained individually to seek best personal gains, but with demand falling in 2009, the individual bargaining power collapsing and the job security getting threatened, they opted to get classified as labour to opt for collective bargaining and sought whatever statutory protection was available for the category called workmen under the ID Act. In collective bargain, the threat of a strike is leveraged to press for the collective demands, while individually, the threat of resignation serves the same purpose for individual demands.

Industrial relations is about collective bargain while talent management is individual bargain. Often, the term employee relations is used as if it is synonymous with industrial relations, but employee relations also is not about collective bargain although the subject here is operatives.Industrial relations is also the product of social economic and political realities, aspirations of their con stituents and the realities of their interdependence and it is not a product of chemistry alone between the leaders on either side.Whereas in case of employee relations or talent management, the issues get resolved at an individual level (although within the framework of policies of the organisation).

The IR competency is all about developing insight into the issues that influence and determine the industrial relations. It is about understanding the challenges faced by the business and the IR imperatives arising therefrom and closely aligning them with business strategies. It is about having a deeper understanding of how the social economic and political environment impacts IR and the constraints of the framework of the labour law within which one needs to operate.

One cannot completely insulate oneself from the realities in the country one operates in. The movement from individual to collective bargaining in any country at any moment in time gets shaped by the law that recognises and defines the rights of the union; the law that protects employment; resolves disputes; the level of social security and the ratio of demand and supply that will define an employee’s individual bargaining strength.

The bargaining power of the union stems from the dependence of the business on the given unit, from where the union operates.And its strength lies in the unity and the confidence the leadership enjoys of his constituents. The union is strong when its members stand united and the leadership is unopposed and the leaders get the ability to say yes. And it will be on a strong footing when the dependence on the unit is high. On the other hand, management will be able to operate from a position of strength and it will have the ability to take a firm stand and say no when its dependence on that unit is low.

IR competency is about realising that formation of the union is not an exhibition of strength and courage to revolt. The organisations which view it such, exhibit unhealthy reactions and create a riot-like situation. It is not the chemistry between the leaders, but the relative forces of interdependence which drive the relationship and build the bond.

Source : The Economic Times

Date : 9th June 2015

India Inc Charged up About Hiring in July-Sept – Prachi Verma New Delhi

DREAM RUN It’s a job seekers’ market, as employers and staffers are hopeful about prospects

India Inc is hopeful of buoyant hiring in the JulySeptember quarter, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey.

Companies from sectors like finance, insurance, real estate, services, mining and construction are the most optimistic. Also, employers in the South and East anticipate the most opportunities for job seekers in the months ahead, according to the survey, shared exclusively with ET. The survey covered over 5,000 employers across the country.

“India stands second globally after Taiwan to report the region’s most optimistic hiring plans,“ said AG Rao, group managing director at ManpowerGroup India.

With the government’s top priority being revival of the manufacturing sector, job seekers are likely to benefit from potential employment opportunities.Creating an employable workforce through apprenticeships can prove to be an important step in this regard, he added.

Employers are looking for expertise in new technologies to build networks in Tier-II and III locations. Further, with the government’s thrust on infrastructure projects across oil & gas, power, telecom and water, the job creation process has been revived in engineering, procurement and construction sector, Rao said.

For all seven sectors that the survey covers, the overall hiring outlook remains high in terms of quarter-on-quarter comparison.

But in a year-on-year comparison, hiring plans weaken in all seven industry sectors and in three regions. In the year-onyear comparison, of the four regions, only East India remains positive in its hiring outlook for the next quarter.

The wholesale, retail sector, public administration and education sectors reported significant decline in hiring outlook and plans, the report states. ManpowerGroup, which held a similar survey in over 40 countries (including India), reports that Taiwan, India, Japan, Hong Kong and the US are the strongest in their hiring outlook. The weakest -and only negative -third-quarter hiring plans are reported in Italy and Brazil.

ManpowerGroup interviewed nearly 59,000 employers across 42 countries and territories to forecast labour market activity in the July to September quarter.

Hiring prospects improve in 11 countries and territories in a quarter-on-quarter comparison, but decline in 22. Outlooks strengthen in 15 countries and territories year on year, but decline in 23.

Employers in nine of 10 countries in the Americas expect to grow staffing levels in the next quarter. Employers in the US report the region’s strongest hiring plans, while the negative forecast from Brazil’s employers is the weakest.

Source : The Times of india

Date : 9th June 2015

ONE-ON-ONE – `Talent can make India major insurance mkt’ – Mayur Shetty Mumbai:

Best Time For Clients To Expand Coverages At Competitive Pricing, Says Marsh CEO

The $13-billion Marsh & McLennan Group is looking to expand in India. The group owns the world’s largest reinsurance broker Marsh, management consultancy firm Olivery Wyman which has advised Sebi and Reserve Bank of India, and talent advisory firm Mercer which already has a headcount of 3,000 in India. Daniel (Dan) Glaser, president & CEO, Marsh & McLennan Companies, is credited with rejuvenating Marsh Inc after its settlement with the New York Insurance Superintendent. In an interview with TOI, Glaser speaks of how India can be a regional insurance market. Excerpts:

What is your approach to growth? How much do you expect it internationally and from which region?

Over the past 25 years, insurance has consistently outpaced GDP growth because risk exposure has increased and insurance-market penetration in emerging markets has also increased. So, the overall level of insurance market growth annually exceeds GDP growth in almost all countries. For Marsh & McLennan Companies, our strongest levels of growth have been in Asia and Latin America. In the past 10 years, the percentage of our revenue generated outside the US has grown from 43% to 55%.

Insurance broking has been the mainstay of the group’s business. But the last decade has seen several acquisitions on the consultancy side.Which will be the major growth business for you?

We are a leading global professional services firm in the areas of risk, strategy , and people. We believe all three areas are critical to providing businesses with advisory ser vices as well as protection.We expect to grow both organically and through acquisitions in the areas of risk and insurance services as well as consulting.

Oliver Wyman has received several mandates from regulatory authorities. Is this turning out to be an area of specialization for the firm?

In 2014, Oliver Wyman was our fastest growing operating company -it grew by 15% on an organic basis. Deep industry knowledge and entrepreneurial spirit drive the firm to continually discover better ways to address clients’ needs, ultimately effecting positive change for them, for their industries, and for the world. Oliver Wyman’s largest practice is financial services, which represented about 40% of its overall revenues, and we received a significant engagement from regulatory authorities and several jurisdictions. We believe this is a core competency for Oliver Wyman.

Will you hike your stake in Marsh India following the new insurance legislation?

We are very interested in India’s growth prospects and we would absolutely consider increasing our stake in the future.

Indian regulators are hopeful of the Indian market turning into a regional reinsurance hub.Your thoughts…

India has the potential to be a major insurance market by continuing to adopt international insurance and insurance intermediary best practices. The high level of talent available in the local insurance market creates the right environment to participate more broadly and could lead to growth not only in insurance, but also in risk management, loss control, and data analytics.This benefits the business community as a whole, as well as creating a vibrant local job market.

Insurance market conditions have been soft. What is your advice to clients?

Insurance market conditions are very dependent on the level of overall losses, which can vary dramatically over time.In general, this is a good time for clients to expand their coverages and obtain competitive pricing. Many of our clients are taking this opportunity to obtain insurance protection in new areas such as cyber risk and contingent business interruption.

For a predominantly service economy like India, what are the risks that you see for businesses?

The world is moving from a level of interconnectedness to interdependency . India is a market where businesses, in both manufacturing and services, are particularly prone to macro-economic risks related to commodity prices, inflation, and regulatory changes that can have sharp impacts on demand or supply.We are also seeing cybersecurity quickly becoming a boardroom agenda item for our clients, especially those in the services sector.

Source : The Times of India

Date : 9th June 2015

5 WAYS TO – Make Staff On-boarding a Success

Getting the on-boarding process of new recruits right is crucial to their assimilation into the organisaton’s culture.Rica Bhattacharyya finds out how companies could make the process smooth and effective.

1 Pay Attention to Integration

Companies can look at the onboarding process as a teambuilding exercise, says Prashant Bhatnagar, VP -hiring and staffing, SapientNitro India. To help pre-joiners integrate into its culture, Accenture has developed `Countdown to Accenture’ as an interactive site targeted to engage new joinees before their first day at work, says Lokendra Sethi, managing director for HR service delivery for Accenture in India.

2 Set Goals

Companies and teams should come up with a list of goals and expectations for the new hire, says Bhatnagar. “A great way to get a new employee excited to take goals head-on is to explain why she was hired,“ he says.

3 Customise Training

Customised orientation can help assimilate the new recruit. Accenture offers four types of programmes -MD integration that comes with an app for each MD, executive induction for senior executives, lateral induction for experienced hires and ASE orientation for all those joining from campus. The programmes cover various aspects such as business, HR practices, culture, core values and essential areas that help settle the new joinee in the organisation, says Sethi.

4 Find a Buddy

“Buddies can be great for all the little things… Having someone designated to ask is a small but significant way to lower the barrier of access to the organisation,“ says Bhatnagar.

5 Let it be

Continuous To make sure companies live up to the promises made to the new employee, regular check-ins are a must to ensure the on-boarding experience is consistent with the employee experience.

Source: Ecomonic Times

Date: 5th June 2015

India Inc Biggies Go on a Hiring Spree to Ride the Ecomm Wave

While the Tata Group has already hired around 50 execs, RIL is in the process of putting in place an ecomm team

Diversified conglomerate the Tata Group, which is giving shape to its ecommerce venture -code named Tata Mall -has hired between 35 and 50 executives who will work out of Mumbai’s Bandra Kurla Complex, said a person with direct knowledge of the plan.

Tata Mall, which will be a subsidiary of Tata Industries, has hired a mix of internal recruits and some from Tata Administrative Services, he said The online venture, which will sell both -goods of Tata Group companies as well as other retailers, will allow the customer to book products online, check them at one of the stores and even cancel the order if unsatisfied with it at the store.

It has formed a steering panel of executives from group companies to guide the ecommerce team in order to sell products from group companies.

“Liaison officers from Tata-owned brands such as retail chain Westside, Titan and Tanishq have started meeting the ecommerce team regularly,” the same person quoted above said. “We are chugging along, but need to move fast because other big players are hiring fast.“

“Ecommerce is of interest to the Tata group,” a Tata group spokesperson said. “We will share more information at the appropriate moment.“

Meanwhile, Reliance Industries (RIL) is also stepping on the gas and is readying its supply chain, riding on its retail chain Reliance Fresh. It has started hiring executives with experience in ecommerce platforms for its online and strategy teams.

“The group has set up a 1,000-seater ecommerce centre and is looking for talent with degrees from Harvard, Wharton and also from competitors such as Snapdeal, Flipkart, Wal mart, Walmart Labs, Jabong and Myntra,” a head hunter said.

The group is in talks to hire a chief executive rom a rival ecommerce firm and has offered an annual salary of ` . 3 crore, while it is offer ng senior executives anywhere between ` . 75 and `. 90 lakh. The company has not offered any stock options until now, said people famil ar with the matter.

Ashish Grover, former director of Target Technology , has joined as VP ecommerce for Reliance Jio, while Chithra Thomas, former as sociate director HR of Walmart, has been hired as VP HR for Reliance online initiative under Reliance Retail. They may be later integrated nto the ecommerce platform once it rolls out.

An email sent to a RIL spokesperson did not elicit any response.

Aditya Birla Group has already built a team under a unit called Aditya Birla Online Fash on, which has between 30 and 40 executives based out of Bengaluru.

“The conglomerates’ ecommerce plans are more of a reaction to what Flipkart and Ama zon have been able to do,“ said a consultant at one of the big four advisory companies.

Source: Economic  Times

Date: 5th June 2015