Job shops: The new-age hiring style
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Job shops: The new-age hiring style

Now walk in with your resume and walk out with a job! But is this trend going to stay? Sonali Majumder finds out.

india Updated: Mar 07, 2006 10:21 IST

Shivani was visibly miffed.

Having walked out of her first job with a leading BPO firm where she felt "cheated" (the remuneration was much less than what was promised), she walked into a Genpact storefront at Pitampura for an interview.

And after two rounds of talks, she trooped out, satisfied at having bagged a job.

Shivani is not alone. Atul Soni, who was working with IBM Daksh for more than two years, wanted to get into finance. He too, landed the job of his liking at the same storefront, and on the same day!

Welcome to the New Age hiring trend -— where you walk into a company's storefront with a résumé and walk out with a job.

It's like walking into a retail outlet to buy a pair of your favourite trousers, the only difference being that instead of a credit card or cash, you need your bio-data to vouch for your credentials.

Genpact started this practice of reaching out to potential employees last year and has set up six such storefronts in Visakhapatnam, Kochi, Delhi, Kolkata, Indore and Lucknow.

The swank storefront in Delhi, spread over some 1,200 square feet is located in the Twin Towers in Pitampura.

"A lot of people just troop in as they would walk into a shop and this is a great branding process," says Ashok Tyagi, Senior VP, Enabling Services.

What's interesting is the fact that as many as 40 candidates are recruited every week at each of these storefronts. "We intend to pursue this further and open more such centres in other cities," says Tyagi.

Another BPO company, EXL Services, also plans a tie-up with retail agencies to adopt a similar hiring system.

But how far is this mode of hiring realistic and does it really help a company to tap the crème de la crème of the talent pool?

Well, for starters, this mode of hiring is suitable mostly for entry and junior-level candidates, though Genpact admits that middle-level managers have also been recruited this way.

"Any innovative initiative is welcome," says Deepak Mukarji, Country Head-External Affairs, Shell Companies, India.

"The BPO sector is operating under tremendous pressure with wafer-thin margins, demanding customers and an extremely volatile employee base. This is indeed a pioneering move to fill the ranks," he says.

Initially, every new initiative is viewed as circumspect, but as the trend catches on, people develop faith in it.

Echoes Ajay Oberoi, Senior VP, Aptech Ltd, which is toying with the concept, "The positive aspect (of this mechanism) is that people looking for a change can actually walk into the right place and come out with the right job. It's less time consuming than having to apply for a position in a company, appearing for interviews et al."

In this mode of recruitment, an applicant normally goes in with his CV and registers his name at the centre.

Usually, there's a written test and if he clears it, he is called for an interview with the HR manager. Before the end of the day, he knows whether he's got the coveted job or not. But there's also a flip side to this. Since it's so easy to find a job, the rate of attrition, which in any case is high in the BPO sector, only gets higher.

Surmises Oberoi, "A professional, who might have worked in a company for a minimum period of two years, may now switch much faster."

Asked about the idea, Nishith Seth, CEO, Seth Services (a consultancy firm for data forensics and analytics), says, "Storefronts might only help in recruiting candidates at the grassroot level. But for inducting candidates at the mid-management level, this type of walk-in may not be of much use."

At this level, a company needs to have a series of interactions with a candidate, and there are usually rounds of interviews that cannot happen on the same day, before the candidate is absorbed.

Comments Vinod Verma, HR-Head, Epicenter Technologies, "Such outlets definitely help organisations to attract the right talent as long as they are managed by the company itself. The location should, however, be chosen with utmost care, since an outlet that's not located in the city hub may not attract the right candidates.

"This channel of hiring comes in handy in case of bulk recruitment and does help in the external and internal branding of the company," says Verma.

But there can be post-joining issues if the scenario described by the hiring team does not match with the real work environment, and can lead to higher levels of attrition.

All said and done, this mode of quick hiring is on its way to becoming a trend.

First Published: Mar 07, 2006 10:21 IST