HIRING SHIFT – To Pick the Best, Companies Get Innovative on Campus

CarDekho.com president Umang Kumar is visiting his alma mater, Indian School of Business, this weekend for the annual alumni event, Equinox. This time, though, he also has hiring in his mind.

Through Equinox, CarDekho -the online portal to buy and sell used and new cars -has organised Torque, a business and product casestudy competition for ISB students.The prize is a pre-placement offer . 40 lakh.with a salary of at least ` CarDekho has extended the preplacement interviews (PPIs) to each of the 10 shortlisted teams, which means up to 30 people at ISB are eligible for a PPI.

“It’s about building our brand and we wanted to assess the best talent before other companies come on campus. Be ing a consumer internet company , human capital is all we have and if we get bright people, we can extend the PPO to more than one person. We can up the salary as well,“ said Kumar.

Eager to get the best and most diversified talent, companies are pulling out all stops to get to campuses, and are tweaking their campus strategies and getting talent increasingly through innovative case studies, contests and other means.

This year, Godrej Industries and its associate companies introduced a competition, Campus Dream, as part of Godrej LOUD (Live Out Ur Dream), a platform to help young and talented realise their dreams. The company asked first-year MBA students to share their big dream for their campus. On offer was a sponsorship of up . 5 lakh to live out their dream and a to ` PPI. Team ` Avengers’ from the National Institute of Industrial Engineering won the competition. Their dream was to set up an electronic, coin-operated, laundry system.

Godrej received more than 2,300 applications for LOUD, a 40% increase from last year, and shortlisted 50 students. It expects 45% of the participants to be part of the group’s summer internship programme this year.

Deloitte’s Maverick, a popular event at b-schools, has doubled its reach to around 107 institutions this season. The programme connects with students across campuses using an engaging business simulation format. This year, more than 15,500 students have registered to participate. The winner gets an opportunity to work with Deloitte.

During the event, participants get to work on programmes which are specifically designed and developed to help create a future workforce that is skilled and trained to succeed in a corporate organisation. Also, the participants have to face current, real-world, global business challenges giving them an opportunity to contribute their opinion and share their insights on a larger scale.

“There are schools which we never visited during placements in the past and their performance during these contests made us reevaluate them. For instance, students from SIBM (Symbiosis Institute of Business Management) in Bengaluru made it as finalists one year and consistently did well in other years as well. Clearly it wasn’t a flash in the pan,“ said SV Nathan, senior director and chief talent officer at Deloitte in India.

Companies perhaps also look to get breakthrough ideas for their businesses through such contests. Under CarDekho’s product challenge, students are expected to envisage themselves as a product manager tasked with building an app which allows consumers to book inspections for their cars. The problem statement here is that most used car buyers and sellers rely on local mechanics to inspect the car they are about to buy or sell. The service given to the consumer is often not up to the mark and not standardised.

Amazon has extended its Amazon Customer Excellence Challenge (ACE) to 21 business schools this year from 15 in 2013. An innovative inter-college case study competition, ACE is open to teams from top b-schools in Asia. ACE challenges students to innovate, strategise and sample a diverse set of complex work challenges that are core to a typical workplace, including Amazon. “ACE expanded its reach to more campuses and we also took it to some international Schools in APAC,“ said Raj Raghavan, director for HR at Amazon.

Source: Economic Times

Date: 11/9/2015

RS 900CR CLAIM – Settle Essar dispute via arbitration: SC to New India

In a setback to New India Assurance, the Supreme Court directed the company to go for arbitration to settle its dispute over a Rs 900-crore terror insurance claim raised by Essar Steel after a Naxal bomb attack destroyed the steelmaker’s 267 km pipeline in Chhattisgarh in 2010.

Essar Steel had obtained a terrorism policy for Rs 19,000 crore in November 2009 and insured its property against direct physical damage or loss due to terror acts. On March 23, 2010, naxalites blew up the company’s slurry pipeline, interrupting business for eight months. The insurance company had, however, refused Essar’s claim alleging fraud and non-disclosure of an earlier attack.

The SC bench of Justices Anil Dave and A K Goel dismissed insurance company’s request to appeal against a 2013 Bombay high court order that had accepted Essar’s plea to appoint arbitrators and held that NIA has to prove its allegations. The SC said that the arbitrators would decide all issues, including allegation of fraud against Essar. Hemant Kumar, general counsel for Essar, when contacted, said the arbitration would now be pursued. Essar had refuted allegations of any fraud or nondisclosure. Justice Anoop Mohta of the HC had in May 2013 appointed former SC judges Justices B P Singh and Aftab Alam as arbitrators. The arbitration, though, never began, as New India Assurance moved the SC in 2013 for leave to appeal. The SC order now comes as a relief to Essar which had invoked the arbitration clause.

The insurance company had dishonoured the terror policy alleging fraud, despite accepting a premium of Rs 2 crore from Essar after verification of all particulars, the SC observed in court. The case, said observers, could be a glaring example of how public sector insurance company was refusing claims and persisting in litigation. The controversy before the SC was whether an insurance company could refuse a by alleging fraud which was not established before any legal or arbitral forum

Source: Times of India

Date: 09/09/2015

Mitsui Keen to Raise Stake in Chola Insurance JV

Japan’s Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Group is looking to raise its stake to 49% from 26% in Cholamandalam MS General Insurance Company, a general insurance joint venture with Murugappa Group, people familiar with the matter said.

The Japanese company is following the example of other global insurers such as AXA, Tokio Marine and Bupa as it sees growth potential in India. “Mitsui is in advanced stages of discussion to increase stake in Cholamandalam General Insurance,“ said a senior executive close to the development. The government raised the cap on foreign direct investment in insurance sector in March this year.

In response to an email query from ET, the company spokesperson said, “As a matter of corporate policy we do not respond to such speculative pegs.“

While most foreign partners want to increase stake in their joint ventures in India, the deals mostly get stuck on valuation and control, experts said.

With foreign partners increasing their stake to 49%, the Indian promoters are left with 51%. If there is any further dilution of stake to public at the time of listing the company on the stock exchange, the control goes to the foreign partner.

Cholamandalam MS General Insurance Company had collected gross written premium of Rs 1,890 crore in 2014-15, marginally up from Rs 1,855 crore in the previous year. Profit after tax almost doubled to ` . 137 crore during the last financial year, from ` . 70 crore in 2013-14. The company operates through nearly 105branches and over 9,000 agents across the country.

According to the company’s annual report, its net worth was ` . 719 crore as on March 31, 2015. It had fixed assets of `. 61.7 crore and investment portfolio of `. 3,164 crore. The general insurance industry has grown about 9.3% over the previous year, after being hit by economic slowdown over the past couple of years that affected auto sales and the motor insurance business badly, for instance.

The industry is expected to grow 15% in the current fiscal, with increase in the motor third party premium, the likely improvement in fire and engineering portfolio, and the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana. Segments such as fire and engineering, marine and auto are poised to do well, with economic activity showing initial signs of pickup and stalled projects getting back on stream as well as new projects coming up.

Source: Economic Times

Date: 09/09/2015

Source: Economic Times

Date: 09/09/2015

Indian Employers Set for Jump in Q4 Hiring

Over 41% employers in retail, logistics look at hiring aggressively

Globally , Indian employers are the most upbeat on hiring plans in the fourth quarter ending December 2015, according to the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey . Sectors like wholesale, retail, utilities -mainly logistics -and transportation are likely to hire aggressively in the next quarter.

Over 41% of employers in India are looking at increasing hiring numbers for the fourth quarter as compared to the quarter ending September. Around 5,000 employers were covered as part of the survey in India. Around 45% and 44% of employers in the wholesale & retail sector (including ecommerce) and the transportation & utilities sector, respectively , are looking at increased hiring in the next quar ter over the previous one. From a regional perspective, around 42% employers in the eastern region anticipate the most opportunities for job seekers in the months ahead.

“There is a big opportunity for ecommerce sectors to add more jobs to the labour market. With the onset of the festival season, there is a renewed focus on employing additional staff to boost businesses and greater hiring is expected across all domains,“ said AG Rao, group managing director at ManpowerGroup India.

In view of the positive outlook for the economy , ecommerce firms are ramping up their workforce across functions, particularly engineers and other specialists with an intention to be technology , product and engineering-driven companies, added Rao.

Shopclues.com, for instance, is planning to add 1,200 employees to its team of 800 while Snapdeal is looking at doubling its headcount of 5,000 by FY16. “We have robust hiring plans in place for the coming months. Most ecommerce companies at this stage are busy ramping up their teams,“ said ShopClues cofounder, Sanjay Sethi. Employers report weaker hiring plans in five of the seven industry sectors when compared with the fourth quarter of 2014.

Mining & construction sector employers report the most notable decline of nine percentage points while outlooks are seven and four percentage points weaker in the finance, insurance and real estate sector and the services sector, respectively. However, while compar ing fourth quarter outlook with the third quarter 2015, hiring intentions remain relatively stable in the finance, insurance & real estate sector and the mining & construction sector.

French multinational, Saint Gobain, is also looking at adding more to its manufacturing and marketing teams. “India is a very important market for Saint Gobain and in the coming months, we hire for new posi tions in manufacturing and marketing,“ said P Padmakumar, team leader & head -human resources, flat glass business. Flat Glass Business contributes 6065% to the company’s total revenues in India.

Hiring will be the topmost priority for Schneider Electric as well, said Rachna Mukherjee, chief HR officer.“Both the manufacturing and retail sectors are posting an optimistic outlook and have seen a boom in the past few years. Our philosophy stretches far beyond hiring for immediate needs ­ we are strongly focused on hiring for the future as well. Hence our focus is on the performance and potential of candidates,“ she added.

Globally, ManpowerGroup interviewed nearly 59,000 employers across 42 countries and territories to forecast fourth quarter labour market activity .

Employers in 36 of 42 countries and territories intend to add to their payrolls by varying margins during the October-December time frame.However, evidence of definitive fourth-quarter workforce gains remains patchy amid signs that the pace of recovery following the slowdown continues to be protracted.

Source : Economic Times

Date : 08-09-20015

India Inc not properly insured, says ICICI Lombard survey

India Inc is inadequately covered for business-related risks. A survey conducted by ICICI Lombard said that revealed that despite being aware, companies have taken insurance coverage for only a few risks. Group medical insurance and group accidental insurance is the most common cover.

The study, spread across 292 companies spanned technology, BFSI, steel, cement, pharmaceutical, petro & energy, engineering & manufacturing, FMCG, reality and infrastructure, mining & minerals, healthcare & hospitality, transportation & logistics, media & entertainment, auto & auto ancillary and telecom. It revealed that many industries which have high exposure to certain risks do not have adequate risk cover.

Results captured for both smaller and bigger firms indicate that companies focus primarily on employee and asset related risks. While most companies have group medical insurance, accidental insurance and insurance against damage to their asset or machinery, they have limited protection against liability related high impact risks. In fact, new age risks such as cyber liability as well as directors’ & officers’ liability have been opted for by few firms.

With respect to assets, fire & special perils (76 per cent) was on top of the list, followed by plant/machinery insurance (59 per cent) and construction all risk (56 per cent). Others like ports & harbour coverage and fidelity guarantee was only taken by 18 per cent of respondents.

Similarly, on liability, covers like Directors & Officers Liability (36 per cent) and Commercial General Liability (25 per cent), apart from public liability (20 per cent) was not very prevalent among India Inc.

Sanjay Datta, Chief-Underwriting, Reinsurance and Claims, ICICI Lombard General Insurance said, “It is important that companies realize that they need to cover their operations against various risks even as they pursue growth through incremental as well as disruptive modes.”

ICICI Lombard’s Survey reveals that while the number of high impact – high propensity risk was more for smaller firms (Rs 125-500 crore), larger firms (above Rs 550 crore) primarily considered employee health and accident related risks as high impact-high propensity.

It said that key risks such as liability has been ignored at industry level, high inclination among companies to cover basic risks. Also, data theft and intellectual property insurance were not amongst the top 5 risks insured by ITeS companies. Even in the BFSI space, only 24 per cent BFSI companies opt for credit & money insurance to protect transit of cash within branches and ATMs.

Even product liability covers, for manufacturers has not been adequate. As per the study, only 44 per cent Auto & Auto Ancillary companies opt for product liability covers, while only 33 per cent FMCG firms opt for product liability insurance. Pharma & chemicals companies hardly purchased liability covers to insure their products and employees.

Source: Bussiness Standard

Date: 1/9/2015

5 WAYS TO – Motivate Millennial Employees

Almost 60% of the country’s population comprises millennials, which means they account for a major chunk of the workforce. It is therefore imperative for companies to regularly engage with millennials. Brinda Dasgupta shows you how to motivate your millennial employees.

1 Disrupt Tradition

Millennials want to approach problems from unexplored angles. Senior management can disrupt traditional hierarchies and dress codes to make them feel more comfortable, motivating them to work better.“Interactive and unmoderated social networks can be used to communicate with seniors; these provide a democratic platform for interaction,“ says Kiran Aidhi, director-HR, Virtusa Corporation.

2 Provide Flexibility

Millennials demand flexibility, and are usually more productive if given the opportunity to occasionally work remotely. “A flexible work policy allows balancing of work and life priorities, which is a big need for millennials,“ says Savitha Shivsankar, associate director -HR, Mondelez India Foods.

3 Create Trust

To inspire the millennials in your workforce, you must gain their trust. “A bottoms-up approach to policy-making and driving processes by employees is necessary to engage people of all generations and take their perspectives into account,“ says Vibha Shukla, director and head -HR, SAP India.

4 Promote Fairness

Openness and transparency in all decisions is needed to motivate millennials, who dislike dishonesty in any form. “It is necessary to promote a work ethic that encourages everyone to operate as owners and creates accountability with responsibility,“ says Shivshankar.

5 Engage Deeply

With millennials being a critical part of every organisation, senior management needs to ensure deep and sustained engagement with them. “Early talent programmes can train and sharpen acquired skills they also bring to the table innovative offerings for soft skill development,“ says Shukla.

Source: Economic Times

Date: 1st September 2015