‘Ensuring That The Right Talent Is In Place Has Never Been More Critical’

Dr. Deepak Singh leads the recruitment function at KPMG in India and is of the view that one can inspire growth mindset by redesigning structures, workflows and talent strategies around people

Q. How’s the war for talent taking shape in the evolving world of jobs?

Business leaders view the talent landscape as current sufficiency of talent. Their perspective primarily focuses on the readiness of the workforce to tackle challenges of future. Research shows that within the next five years one-third of skills relevant now would have changed and some roles may not even exist.

It is imperative that the business leaders take a holistic view on talent models and more specifically on organizations’ ability to react to changes in technology, automation, labor market, and the overall competitive landscape. HR upskilling is important in identifying, retaining and developing talent as the business depends on innovations in products and services to drive growth. Thus, ensuring that the right talent is in place has never been more critical.

Unlocking growth in the new world of work by redesigning jobs and moving people to future agile culture is seen as an organizational competency today and is in high demand. HR should work towards making work simple, intuitive and digitally enabled to help people grow. With remote working and virtual teaming increasingly becoming a reality, the quality of employee experience depends largely on digital collaboration. One should look for inspiring growth mindset by redesigning structures, workflows and talent strategies around people, hence success will require a structural and digital disruption of HR.

Q. What are the factors that impede organizations from attracting talent?

Talent shortage concerns are real and experienced across organizations. HR recognizes key capability gaps when it comes to firms’ ability to attract talent:

i) Lack of availability of role ready talent which can be deployed productively helping the organization become profitable  

ii) Lack of talent engagement on digital media platform as inadequate engagement is leading to less awareness of offerings

iii) Lack of strategic employer branding which should focus on branding inward and outward to make the brand more visible meaningfully

iv) Lack of holistic and diversified strategy for a multi-generational workforce

Even with these recognized gaps, a majority of companies are still only creating short term talent plans. Some organizations claim to have clear strategies for the next couple of years or less. It is no surprise that a holistic and diversified strategy is lacking.

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Q. How important is workforce analytics for HR professionals?

In the era of technology and with interventions of robotics there is a constant effort around optimizing workforce. It is very essential for business to review workforce performance as the key to improving and decision making.

Workforce analytics is a set of integrated capabilities to be measured to improve workforce performance. The goal is simple – to put the right people with the right skills in the right place; provide them with the necessary training and development opportunities and engage and empower them to perform at their highest possible level.

While the goal is simple, getting there involves a sophisticated mix of factors: executive commitment,  right metrics and technologies and the people and the processes to turn insight into action.

Workforce analytics will help organizations become effective at leveraging their workforce, they have the most engaged employees and thrive in the toughest conditions.

Q. What’s your success mantra?

Getting out of comfort zone is key here. One needs to embrace the changes and be ahead of the learning curves this will help one sail smoothly in today’s hyper-competitive world. One should draw inferences from their personal missions, experiences and discoveries to empower oneself. This helps fuel fresh energy and creates own potential to deliver extraordinary.

Humility pays a pivotal role in developing surroundings and managing circumstances. One needs to constantly keep raising the bar. Bringing out best at workplace is another vital factor to success. Many a time, we overwhelmingly play to our strengths and competencies. When we are at our best we should bring the best in others.

Open and honest conversations have a cascading impact. This helps leaders to prioritize team learning and create realistic goals. Leaders who recognize and affirm others’ contributions can bring out the best in themselves and others consistently.

Q. How do you see artificial Intelligence as enabler to talent acquisition? 

Artificial intelligence enables organizations with an ability to scale efficiently and provide consistent support for quality operations and decision making irrespective of the volume of data that talent operations teams need to handle on a daily basis.

While there are many constructs available for artificial intelligence technologies today, one can deploy innovative domain Intelligent, ethical and unbiased AI for acquiring talent for current and future needs of the organizations. AI cross pollinates job applicants against published jobs to ensure the best fitment between people skills, competencies, experiences and expectations with the job they are expected to perform and also subsequently grow across various opportunities in their organizations.

About Dr. Deepak Singh

Dr. Deepak Singh is human resource professional with 23 years of domain experience. He currently leads the recruitment function at KPMG in India. In the last 15 years he has worked across few  big four consulting firms. Dr Singh’s core expertise spans in areas of Transformation, organisation strategy, setting up CoE’s, Talent Acquisition, Organisation Development, Industrial Relations and  industrial Green field projects. He is also a national athlete who has won international medals and brought laurels to the county in the sport of shooting.

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