Unleashing RPO Potential in Asia: Q&A with Mehul Rajparia on Talent Acquisition Strategies

July 29, 20168:47 am1016 views

Transforming talent acquisition is a big effort and needs to be driven from the top. The challenge for HR is to strike a balance between technology and human judgement. It is important for HR managers to remember that technology can only deliver data, not insights.

Focusing on automation as a key enabler to growth, and integrating technology with the “human element” will provide intuitive data and reliable insights for HR managers to decide on the best suited hire.

The Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) market in Asia is now seeing an increased uptake, owing to use of sophisticated technology tools changing the face of recruitment at a rapid pace. This requires organisations to be more agile, adaptive and receptive of change to embrace the transformation with resilience.

In an exclusive interview with Mehul Rajparia, Vice President – Asia Pacific, Lumesse, we derive insights on the transformational RPO and talent acquisition strategies that will help organisations in Asia Pacific drive profitable outcomes and meet long-term business objectives. Read on…

  • Take us through the Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) market in Asia. What are the current challenges and future trends in RPO?

There has been an increased uptake towards RPO in the recent years in Asia.  Large local organizations and Asia based multinationals are leaning more towards RPOs for improved efficiency. This is a positive change, which means more organisations are now seeing value in specialized expertise and technology to streamline their recruiting process.

Current challenges: Cost justifications continue to be the primary challenge.  While many organizations are seeing value in RPOs, they are finding it difficult to justify costs to the senior management. It would not be surprising if companies look to develop solutions, processes and services in-house that were once relied upon an RPO to provide or deliver.

Future trends: Project based outsourcing, temporary or contractual hiring, and provision of more strategic services and not just recruitment services are some of the future trends envisioned for the RPO industry in Asia.

Mehul Rajparia, Vice President – Asia Pacific, Lumesse

Mehul Rajparia, Vice President – Asia Pacific, Lumesse

  • What are the talent acquisition and management strategies followed at Lumesse to get the best talent on board by harnessing technology?

At Lumesse, we believe there are really two sustainable sources of talent – the talent you acquire and the talent you develop. And we believe that, in times of economic pullback or economic expansion it is critical to be able to move quickly to hire or develop talent. Automation is a key enabler here.

In the first instance, we use our own Talent Acquisition solutions to source, engage and hire our workforce. In the second instance we use our Talent Management, ETWeb, to streamline the process of developing our people. In both instances, we rely heavily on technology reporting, analytics and trusted data as foundations for our HR processes.

We manage every stage of an individual’s journey – from pre-hire candidate to being an employee as a continuous process. Besides recruitment and onboarding, we also place continued emphasis on culture, engagement, environment, empowerment and fit.

From performance planning to 360-degree reviews, and learning programs, we take a pragmatic approach to workforce development, enabled by technology and empower our employees.

  • Explain the role of technology as a key enabler to find the perfect hire, and why is it important to get the onboarding right?

Simply stated, you have to move quickly to find, engage and hire the best talent.  Technology streamlines processes that are otherwise manual and slow. Technology helps recruiters reach out to their targets quicker, filter quickly, and run through the entire recruitment process much quicker.

Generally we think of onboarding as an activity, which is the first step to integrating an employee into the workplace culture. The reality is that, it is the final step of the recruiting process. Effective onboarding is all about being able to keep the employees engaged all through the recruitment process with the organisation. This pervades right from the time of selection till the time they join the organization.

  • How can organisations calculate the Return on Investments (RoI) on social media recruitment?

As with any other recruiting source or process, organisations can measure the RoI on social media recruitment by measuring the time to hire, applicants to successful hire ratio, and retention rates of employees hired.

  • How can social media help in attracting talent, improve engagement and candidate experience online?

The social aspect of social media allows the organisation to interact with their potential candidates and also to know something about the candidate prior to first-touch interviews. Social sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn provide sneak peek into a candidate’s profile, their network connections and if they are a possible fit into the organization culture.

Social sites like Instagram do the same for a candidate. If a company chooses to showcase pictures of its corporate culture via photos on Instagram, it will help candidates to capture a glimpse of the organisational culture even before they join in and accept the offer.

It is generally accepted that the most effective hiring source is an employee referral. LinkedIn, with its new Referral portal, allows companies to turn all its employees into recruiters, by enabling them to seamlessly share jobs with friends on their social networks and refer their friends to jobs where they possibly think they are a best fit. This can also be possible via a company branded website and strong recruitment platform, such as the one from Lumesse, candidates can apply with a single LinkedIn click.

See: Using Predictive Insights for Data-Driven Talent Acquisition, Sourcing and Engagement

  • Is Employee Engagement a Fad or a Business Imperative? How can organisations in Asia Pacific improve employee engagement at work?

Employee engagement is something that employers in Europe and the Americas absolutely believe is increasing in importance. Employee engagement is a business imperative. The idea of employee engagement may be insignificant in Asian cultures, which is why HR professionals would need to become advocates. Several global studies have shown that employee engagement directly affects business results.

To improve employee engagement, organisations can make use of HR Technology to set performance targets and make career plans more transparent to employees. HR professionals must help align employee’s personal goals with the organisational goals. This helps employees to stay engaged and helps the company grow, at the same time.

  • Do you think taking “human element” out of “Human Resource Outsourcing” will help find perfect hire, create winning teams by using robotic technology and ATS to find candidates based on right keywords and experiences?

The challenge for HR is to strike a balance between technology and human judgement. Using technology will bring automation that helps speed up the recruitment process and provide data that enables HR to be more informed in their recruitment efforts.

However, technology can only deliver data, not insights.  Insights can only come from interpretation of data, and organisations need the human judgement to ask questions and help make decisions at the end of the day. So, I think taking the human element out, could speed up the process that can be automated, but this cannot be the only objective.

Removing the “human element” is not the best way to go. Instead, if you integrate technology with the human element, it can help you find the best hire in the least amount of time and with utmost confidence in your decisions.

  • What are the challenges to people management in the current workplace scenario, wherein millennials are soon reigning and multigenerational workforce is assuming leadership roles early on in their career?

I see that there are two primary challenges here – Expectations and Stereotypes. These are transformational times. We are seeing shifts in age groups, how information is shared, generational viewpoints and a host of other elements, when a demographic shift occurs.

As with any transformation, proper change management is essential. But this is also a time of great opportunity. Facilitating sharing sessions between various generations to interact and learn from each other, can help improve team performance at work.

  • Tell us more about the latest launch of Interview Management Solution by Lumesse to boost recruitment efficiencies. How does it help hire the right talent quickly?

Interview Management Solutions help HR professionals reduce the time spent on calling up applicants and coordinating interview timings. The tedious processes associated with interviewing can now be managed online. HR can thus focus on the strategic part of recruitment and make use of the information available, to identify key talents to be hired.

  • How can organisations create talent succession pipeline to allow younger workforce to assume leadership roles early on in their careers?

The younger workforce today is eager to learn and grow. They are not seeking for a pay check but instead they are seeking to develop themselves and learn new skills on job. Through self-service learning solutions and continuous performance feedback, employees will be empowered to self-manage their career growth.

This is a wonderful thing. Today’s younger workforce is motivated and high-potential self starters empowered to move as quickly as they can and want to. The key is to align organisational goals with personal development goals of the employees.

When the younger workforce sees opportunities to progress in their career within the firm, they are more willing to stay and this helps create a steady talent succession pipeline.

Using a talent management system such as the one from Lumesse, HR managers can effectively keep track of each employee’s performance; know the high potential employees, and future leaders through succession plan.

  • Pairing candidates to positions through predictive analytics, how is technology revolutionising the way recruitment works?

Technology allows HRs to take advantage of analytics and report with reliable data, while traditional hiring is more subject to the employers’ intuition. Also, as the companies grow bigger, it is not practical for the job interviewers to screen each resume or interview every job applicant. Herein recruitment technology comes to aid by increasing the hiring efficiency and accuracy.

  • What are the future trends in HR technology, recruitment and talent acquisition you foresee for organisations in Asia Pacific – Vision 2020?

Three key notable trends in the future, which I foresee for Vision 2020, are:

  • Self-service employee development solutions
  • Consumer-like applications / user experience to increase technology adoption
  • Greater use of the predictive analytics

Also read: Transforming Talent Acquisition: Changing World of RPO Offers New Solutions

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