What trends In HR Will Govern 2016?

I am hosting the current HR Carnival and for the theme, thought that came to my mind was on the HR trends that will govern 2016. I got some interesting posts for you today. 

David Richter, on his blog shared the "6 HR Software Trends You’ll See In 2016". He outlines what he has noticed in the HR software industry over the past 12 months and gives some thought as to what he think is likely to happen in the future. 

Stuart Rudner in the recent post shared that there will be clarity in the laws so that managing performance and imposing discipline on employees will not be percieved as "harassment". 

Stephanie Hammerwold in her recent post shared on Ban-the-Box initiatives. This is an issue that is getting more and more attention and was recently addressed by President Obama, so she thinks this is something that needs to be on your radar in the HR world in the upcoming year.

Catching them young, a strategy adopted by companies operating in the IT and tech space to improve their gender diversity appears to be gaining momentum. It's a well-known fact that not many women opt for careers in the science, technology, engineering and math or STEM fields. As a result, gender ratios are highly skewed towards male employees. Several companies are running programmes targeting girls-only schools with an objective to build a future bench strength which is more diverse in nature.

Any more trends that come to your mind, share in the comment section below. I'm waiting to hear your thoughts. 

How to Make Employees So Happy They’ll Call to Thank You?

Sounds crazy?

Too good to be true? Isn't it?

In a world where people fail to acknowledge, getting a call to thank you on the first instance will definitely sound surprising.

But ever thought why your efforts are not creating the "wow" effect in the mind of your employees?

Why people take you for granted? 

How does some organizations has this uncanny ability to keep their employees so happy while pushing them to their limits?

After reading the title of this blog post, you must be wondering that "happiness" is a relative term. It varies from person to person. Things that brings happiness to you today, may not even get a smile on your face tomorrow.  Happiness is so SUBJECTIVE.

And to tell you...You're right in your thoughts.

Everyone has their own definition of HappinessThe irony is that the meaning keeps changing with time.

Today, a salary increase may pump in adrenaline. Tomorrow career development may take a front seat for you. 

Preferences changes with time and so does the yardstick of measuring Happiness.

That reminds me of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs. It gives an understanding on what motivates people at different stages of life. It states that when one need is fulfilled a person seeks to meet the next one, and so on.

A similar thing is going in your organization as well.

You have people at various levels in the hierarchy. Their needs and requirements are different. For an employee who is at the bottom of the pyramid, salary and job security will be the top most priority. While for an employee who is at a senior level, self-esteem and respect from others brings happiness to him. 

The challenge for you as an HR professional is to handle those needs judiciously at all levels. 

And your organization to equip you to create systems that build a long-term culture of Trust and Happiness.

And that is what this post is all about. It will guide you to...

  • Ceate a culture where everyone is heard.
  • Create a culture where people expectations are managed well.
  • Create a culture where employees feel that they have space to express and develop.

And above all....

  • Creating a culture that rides on the wings of Happiness.

Madan Nagaldinne (Head of HR - Facebook (NY)) in his recent interview to people matters shares that "Creating a happy workplace is a by-product of HR’s role; it is not an input you should be focused on". However,  I think that this input plays a vital role in defining and creating products and services for the company.     

In simpler terms, it boils down to ONE easy equation and I'm sure you will understand.  

A happy employee will result in a happy customer. A happy customer will lead to word of mouth publicity. Word of mouth publicity will result in more inquiries. Inquiries will convert into sales. Sales will eventually result in more of Profits.

Simple. Isn't it?

And how do you start the journey of creating a Happy Culture?

It starts with the foundation of TRUST and two factors you need to work to get this foundation rock solid.

1. Genuineness

2. Engagement

These factors have helped the best places to work for, to become organizations that they are today. These companies hold a culture and brand everyone today aspires to work for.

And what I'm going to share in my post will force you to rethink the way you're doing things in HR. 

Mark my words...

Master the two factors and you'll challenge world's top brands and even your competitors.

Amazing? Ready to rock and roll?

By putting in these simple ingredients (Genuineness and Engagement) in your dish (company) you'll prepare the perfect recipe (org culture) that will make your people so happy they'll call to thank you.

And trust me. The call does come. 

And just in case you felt engaged after reading my post, don't hesitate to email me or share your happiness in the comments section at the end of the post. 

I'll be waiting...

The Recommended Cure For Any Organization (and Why Do We Have To Change)

Avoid Running Election Campaigns In Your Organization

​The fundamental element required for an organisation to thrive and grow is having employees who are committed, motivated and engaged

​There's a difference between pursuing engagement and actually achieving it. 

Most of the time when we run our internal employee engagement surveys, it becomes like any other election campaign. People participate as per their wish. They often refrain from giving inputs on the real pain points. They fear that if they give the right picture, the management may come to know who has given the input and hence may question them. 

After analysis of the survey, you don't get concrete inputs. You start prioritising and making action plans and end up targeting the wrong areas. Result, your workforce isn't satisfied and they lose faith in your system. 

I'm NOT a strong advocate of doing Engagement surveys. To communicate with the management, people shouldn't wait for any engagement survey. It should be a natural process and kind of part of the system. However, in case you do want to conduct it, do it with full fairness and transparency. It should be 100% anonymous.

The prime objective of any employee engagement survey is to get feedback from the employees on areas of improvement. In this pursuit, you are gathering a lot of data on how you can improve your HR systems and processes. 

Often it is observed that important areas are left untouched and work is only done on some low hanging fruits. 

Don't let the precious feedback from your people go in vain and your entire Engagement Survey, like I just talked, become more of an election campaign. 

The ‘curse’ of employee engagement is that the process of trying to achieve something positive and beneficial for your employees can actually end up disengaging them. In other words, you can create exactly the opposite of what you intended.

This is because you ask questions in your engagement surveys on how your employees feeling about their work and the workplace. Answering these questions brings ‘problem areas’ to the surface from people’s minds. If no action is then taken to address these issues, employees are left feeling worse than they did before, as you’ve falsely raised their expectations with an unspoken promise that you’ll do something as a result.

Think of this scenario...

What is that you have in your mind when you are voting in the elections? 

You think of the promises that the new government has made. You think of the developments once they come into power.  You think of the well-being measures that they will ensure. After all you voted your favourite candidate or party based on what they promised at the time of the election campaign. 

But what do you ultimately get in return of your precious vote and trust? 

False promises. Fake assurances. Broken trust. 

You feel cheated and disgraced when you see that the new government is not keeping up to their words. 

Similarly, if you don't act on the feedback given by your employee, your engagement survey is destined to doom like any other election campaign.

People will assume that you don't value their suggestions or inputs.

Lack of proper action planning after the exercise results in no work being done after the survey. 

So, why don't the Employee Engagement Surveys Work and what can be done to resolve it? 

Common Issues

  • Asking too generic questions in the questionnaire
  • No effective change management
  • Engagement perceived as HR responsibility ONLY
  • A lot of time taken to implement solutions
  • Lack of communication on action plans
  • Low participation of employees


  • Ask the right questions. Avoid questions on which you don't want to take any action for eg Salary
  • Involve all levels of employees in the change process. Take their commitment and ownership for the new implementations
  • Devolve the responsibility for engagement to everyone in the organization. HR is for facilitation and support
  • Prepare action plans and timelines for implementation and communicate to employees on your plans on a regular basis

Engagement may be a concept that builds on commitment, motivation, job satisfaction and the psychological contract. One thing’s for sure though: it can pay dividends. Ultimately, the key to breaking the curse of engagement is to ask the right questions and to prioritise specific, practical, manageable actions that senior executives, line managers and individuals can take to drive engagement levels higher.

If you can't solve .... don't ask them after all you are an HR professional and not a politician. Be Genuine in your approach and the end result will be a highly aligned and Engaged workforce. 

RIP The Concept of FEEDBACK

Why the concept of Feedback dying its own death? 

Let’s say you completed a year or just finished with one of your most important project.

Your boss calls you for a meeting. Multiple thoughts starts hitting your mind. 

"Maybe he’s called me to review my performance and talk about my next promotion? Maybe he’s called to talk about how well I executed my last project? Maybe he’s got some news for me?" Maybe......Maybe......Maybe

But what happened next, gives you the shock of your life.

Your boss tells you...​

“You shouldn’t have done it like this? I expected you to be more focused and get this thing finished within time lines. I had high expectations from you. The CEO wanted you to be more analytical and in depth in your approach. Sorry but you have disappointed us”

Dreams shattered. Mood devastated. Motivation down the flush tank. 

Ultimate result. 

Sour boss and subordinate relation.

What possibly could have stopped for such a situation to arise? What measures taken in the past could have averted such a feedback? How can the result of performance or project execution be more fruitful? 

Bye Bye Feedback. Welcolme FEED FORWARD.

Feedback is all about “reviewing of what happened in the past”. While as the name suggests, feeding forward is to "give suggestions in the present for the future".

You cannot go back in the past to correct a situation. You cannot revert the past. You cannot improve your past.

But you can definitely redefine your future, provided you get right inputs at the right time.

The situation in the opening example could have been encouraging for you if your boss had timely communicated to you as to where you were going wrong. He could possibly have shared well in time what the CEO is expecting out of you in the project. If he could have shared what he is expecting. If he could have communicated how he wanted you to execute the project, things would have been totally different for you. 

If you were communicated well in time, you would have been in a better situation to:-​

  • Take timely corrective actions in terms of improving your performance
  • Reworked on your data and present it with better analysis and understanding
  • Redefined your priorities so that the project is completed on time

That would have resulted in:-

  • Your next promotion or salary hike
  • Recognition and appreciation from the CEO
  • Happy work life with more of trust and faith in the system and the senior

To sum it up, don't just feed your people with food, but feed them with good suggestions in the present. 

The Most Powerful Way Of Building People Connect

Ever played the famous game of "Chinese Whisper"?

The communication mechanism, if not worked properly, can result in becoming a game of Chinese whisper in your organization. The original statement gets twisted and turned going from one ear to another. The final version is nowhere close to what the actual thing was.

Communication, if not handled properly can go in a wrong direction. How? If the right communication is not shared at the right time, it gives birth to.....​

Rumors​ and Gossips

Gossip is an old form of communication and no workplace is immune from it. I am not against any office talks or cafeteria gossips over a cup of coffee. These are part of corporate culture and you can't escape from them.

But when these office talks transforms into rumors and become the voice of the management, it starts creating a culture of confusion and mistrust. 

After all, people like gossip and interesting bits of information: you only have to look at the number of celebrity-focused publications to realize that we have a huge appetite for discussing other people's lives. At work, however, this type of interaction is harmful and costly. It wastes time, damages reputations, promotes divisiveness, creates anxiety, and destroys morale.

How To Declare War on Office Rumors? 

Making communication at the right TIME and with the right communication CHANNELS.

Often communication is tagged as “Highly Confidential”. And I hate to hear this when in reality even the office peon is kind of aware of it. Don’t tag all your communication bits as HC when actually all dick and harry knows about it before hand. After all, we are working for a corporate and not for MI6.  

Same goes with famous organizational wide circulars. The irony of organizational circulars is that apart from the people affected in the circular, most of the other employees are already aware of the change before it is out in the open.  Do you experience something similar in your company? 

13 Communication Rules That Make Your Engagement 100% More Powerful

1. Stop the GUESSING work and let people be informed of what's happening in company

2. Communicate CLEARLY so that even the lowest level employee understands the intent behind it.

3. Deal with any unwanted Rumor IMMEDIATELY

4. Release your internal circulars ON TIME

5. Display all important communications at prominent areas in your organization 

6. Share your companies values, mission statement etc PUBLICLY on site 

7. Emphasize your key points through REPETITION 

8. Open up with your people by keeping a good sense of HUMOR 

9. Understand people's point by actively LISTENING to them

10. Always respond back to your people queries in a TIMELY manner

11. Use a LANGUAGE that's distinctly yours and that let your own values come through

12. CUSTOMIZE your communication style as per your audience

13. To avoid RUMORS ensure communication should reach all stakeholders at all levels and at the same time

Rather than giving room to people to either assume or misinterpret information, perspective taking and confirmation leads to better and direct communication.

Great communicators have a way of disarming their audience in order to put them at ease.

People respect authenticity and they're much more willing to follow real leaders, not corporate puppets.

DO as I say, not as I DO 

Some rules are meant only for others to follow. You expect your people to abide by them while you break them yourself. 

You talk about respect in the open while behind closed doors you tarnish people’s honor. You talk about excellence while forcing people to compromise on quality. You talk about truth while manipulating your own words. 

There is a famous saying in the corporate world, “walk the talk”. You create a great value statement. You make good processes and systems. You lay down a clear set of rules for people to follow. In the end, you implement it and expect others to abide by them. 

I was once travelling with a senior professional to his office. As he was entering the office gate, he stepped out of the vehicle to punch his card. I knew that senior people in their company were kind of refrained from punching their cards at the entrance. So why did he did it was my question to him. 

To my query, his answer was, “The company wants people to be disciplined and punch cards while entering and exiting the office. Irrespective of my designation, when they see me punching card even when I am in my vehicle, it sends a silent message to them, that this is an important rule of the organization which needs to be followed by everyone. Even I am allowed by system to not punch, I prefer doing it, so people know that it is important". 

People follow leaders and their gestures communicates what is important for them, which automatically becomes important for them as well. 

However, when people see that the seniors are violating certain rules but want their juniors to abide, while they won’t say anything, they feel that there is some kind of discrimination in the Organization. 

Avoid landing in such a situation where you start making people feel discriminated. 

Your genuineness will be at stake. 

The Best Leaders Set Example By Going First

As a leader, part of your job is to inspire the people around you to push themselves – and, in turn, the company – to greatness. To do this, you must show them the way by doing it yourself.

When leaders don't "practice what they preach," it can be almost impossible for a team to work together successfully. How can anyone trust a leader who talks about one thing, but does another?

What’s Your Excuse Now?

The information I shared is not magical, mystical or complicated. In fact, you could consider implementing them RIGHT NOW

Even if you do not implement all of them but by making simple changes you work can have dramatic effects on how your people will feel. 

Just imagine how would they feel if they are respected, heard and given importance. 

Imagine they get time to spend with their families and are not stressed.

Imagine they waking up tomorrow morning looking forward to the day ahead, not dreading it. 

Just choose any one of the techniques above, and try it out tomorrow.

Start getting the hang of it and try out new avenues. Get your people buyin. 

You can see the SMILES on those faces pretty soon. 

Top 10 Issues Faced by the Human Resource Department

What’s troubling you in HR? What are the problems faced by your HR department in the current scenario? Anything new about the challenges you are facing today? Whether it's a specific problem or a list of problems? What are your 10 toughest issues in HR? Any concern keeping you awake all night?

I want to know.

This is what I asked from the top HR professionals and fellow HR bloggers for my recent HR carnival Theme which I am hosting today. Tell me your problems in HR

So this post not only has my insights on this subject but also carries inputs given by other HR bloggers from around the world on issues, challenges or concerns grappling our HR Fraternity.

So without wasting time, let’s dive in.

Top 10 Problems That Are Grappling the Human Resource Department


How can HR get the elusive ‘seat' at the table?

Prasad Kurian on his blog on HR, OD and Personal Effectiveness shares that a mathematical approach to HR by being more data-driven, quantitative, objective and mathematical in approach can help in getting a seat at the table. We should make an effort to figure out if the particular HR issue that we are dealing with is more like a ‘problem’ or more like a ‘paradox’ and deal with it accordingly. Data and analysis are very useful. But they are not substitutes for understanding and wisdom. 

Even when it comes to the matter of strategy making, it has been argued that the core strategy making process is essentially intuitive, with data & analysis being useful as an input/trigger for strategy making and also as tool for doing a reality check on the strategy created. The same holds in the case of HR strategy also! We must also remember that in the physical world (outside Mathematics) there are 'singularities' where 'normal rules/algorithms' no longer work!


How do we get our employees to not only understand their deficiencies in either behavior or performance, but also be a part of the solution in addressing them?

Judith Lindenberger from the Lindenberger Group, shares in her latest post that managers should be leading the employees through a cooperation approach to change their behavior or performance, rather than leading with compliance. Forcing or even requesting compliance first will often promote defensiveness. Just like your child, an employee when faced with his/her wrongdoing, will likely try to find a way to excuse or defend their wrongdoing. And it’s a slippery slope to non-compliance if the employee’s initial reaction is one of defensiveness. Chris Edmonds from the LeadChangeGroup.com also shares that if you want better performance then clear the path and coach for success. 


Raising the Bar – How can HR increase capability of the employees?

In one of the interactions with a senior HR leader, I came to know that working towards the development of employees is very essential. Companies which are far ahead in terms of technology, invests a lot in building capability of its workforce. There is a burning need to invest in the right direction. Making our people adapt to change and deliver in challenging situations is the need to the hour. Page cole from the LeadChangeGroup.com shares the Most Important Lesson You Will Learn Today and that is Learn One Lesson Per Day & Learn It Well. 


How to use technology in sharing of knowledge?

John Hunter from the Curious Cat, Management Blog shares that Technology can help improve our adoption of better understanding thereby creating a climate and expectation of continued learning. Few ways in which knowledge can be effectively shared are through Intranets, Wikis, websites or blogs and through traditional methods like books. 


How to enhance the domain knowledge in HR?

Process of continued learning and remaining at par with the new developments in the HR field is one of the challenges the HR fraternity is facing today. Apart from attending workshops, seminars there is strong need on devoting time on self learning. Legal laws and compliances are changing at a rapid pace and one must have the expertise in understanding as well as comprehending such changes. Read books, talk to HR people, meet and discuss and share your perspective with veterans from the industry. 


How can we attract new hires?

We are struggling to find new hires. We advertise locally and nationally on major job posting sites. And while we are having some success hiring through agencies, they charge high fees. What are we missing here? We offer a great insurance package, 401(k), profit sharing and competitive rates in one of the most popular cities in the U.S., yet we still have trouble finding good applicants. Any thoughts on the matter? Check out the insights on the post by Rebecca on Paycor.com about attracting new hires

Seems like the hourly worker is a hot topic of conversation just about everywhere these days. Yet, some organizations still struggle with high turnover and poor-fit hires. Findly shares a best practice approach for recruiting and hiring today’s hourly workers in this post here


What would it take to create a more human workplace?

This does not mean we hold hands and sing summer camp songs, or that you need to become a therapist. It means that we are adults at play at work. We all get to use what we are good at. We work through conflicts in a healthy way. Conflict is inevitable and good for challenging the status quo. Mary C. Schaefer, shares that if organizations are to thrive, managers are going to have to take seriously their own health and face their own demons, in order to learn to truly lead others.


How to retain talent especially in the IT sector?

Randstad Award 2015 research reveals IT professionals are more inclined than any others to look for a new opportunity. In fact, 18% of IT workers polled in the survey changed employers in the past 12 months, and another 20% say they consider seeking new employers in the coming year. As a result, retaining critical talent and keeping overall employee turnover in check have again become a top priority for businesses in 2015. Randstad Sourceright offers helpful tips in this post and the top three factors driving IT employees to switch employers and approaches businesses can embrace to address each of these retention challenges.


How can HR skill itself to manage change in the organization?

One of the focus areas is on the development of HR skills so that they are able to handle change adequately in the organization. It is often observed by senior leaders that HR takes a hell lot of time in designing and implementing anything. Be it policy matter or any key strategic decisions, HR professionals tend to take longer than usual time to come to a conclusion. Hence, to make HR become order creators and not order takers in any organization, it is vital for them to skill themselves to effectively manage any change in the organization. 


How to assess accommodation of disable people in organization?

This issue is more location specific. Stuart Rudner shares that it is well-established that employers in Canada are required to accommodate individuals with disabilities. This is an issue that arises frequently, but is often misunderstood by both parties. Employees must participate in the accommodation process by providing medical information, and employers must genuinely consider any request for accommodation of disability. 

Do you have more issues to add on the list. What is bothering you these days? Do you agree to the views shared in my post. Please post your thoughts in the comments section below. 

Jobs in HR – Little-Known Factors That Could Affect Your Next HR Job

​If you’re feeling you CAN'T win BIG in your current role, either RESOLVE to step up your performance TODAY or move into a new HR role elsewhere. NOT TOMORROW. NOW.

Alan Collins
Writer, Blogger

Do you want to discover how to make your HR job Hunting more effective? Do you want to know the 5 ways in making your resume stand out from the rest and speak blatantly about you?

While looking out for jobs in the HR Department, one of the biggest advantages you get is that you can apply for an HR job in ANY sector. Be it in Manufacturing, IT, Financial institutions, FMCG, Service industry or even as a matter of fact Startups, unlike other roles (marketing, operations) that are kind of stereotyped in nature, you can join the HR Function in any sector irrespective of the industry you are currently working in.

Amazing, isn't it?

You can earn some brownie points at the interview table by sharing your knowledge of the industry you're currently working in. However, the final hiring decision will not be solely judged by your sector specific knowledge but primarily on account of how well you understand the business and display your people management skills and competencies in the interview.

An exposure in multiple sectors, adds credibility and diverse experience in your HR role and portfolio.

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But the secret is that even if there are so many jobs in the HR space, the vast majority of jobs in human resources are NEVER ADVERTISED and are either closed internally or through a reference.

Surprised. Even I was when I came to know about it.

Apart from hiring directly from premier MBA colleges, most of the HR managers prefer closing their HR positions either internally or through referencing from reliable sources. As mentioned, only a few jobs (around 30%) are floated in the market as most of the Hiring Managers are cautious while recruiting in the HR function. They want to be 100% sure that the person they are hiring has a strong ethical background and possesses good people management skills. Hence, even by chance you look at so many published HR jobs on various portals, only a few of them are closed from outside.

In this post (a part of our getting jobs in HR series) I’m going to share how using these simple yet effective techniques can help you win BIG and land up getting your next job in the HR function. Whether you’re just starting your career or you’re performing a senior or middle level role in HR, the techniques that I will share in these short series of blog posts will definitely go a long way helping you in future.

So without wasting more time, let’s quickly dive in.

My Story...

Let me share my own job hunting story with you. I still remember the frustration when I was out of college in 2006. My friends who passed out with me were too finding it hard to get a decent job. It was kind of knocking each and every door and forget about letting you in, nobody even wanted to listen to you. When I look back at my those good old days, I learnt and realised a fact that finding a decent start in the HR space was struggling then as a fresher and even now when you have gained a fair amount of exposure in the HR vertical.

What do you think? Do you feel that it is challenging to get a job in HR in any decent company? Please comment. I want to know your views.

Job Hunting - Modus Operandi

How do you normally approach the process?

  • You search and apply to jobs matching your expertise on LinkedIn or other job boards. You visit the career section of other organizations and submit your resume for a relevant role.
  • You directly contact companies or recruiters if they have any job opportunity for you

You repeat the process until you finally get a job or you are totally exhausted.

After putting so much of efforts and time, are you really sure that the job offer will be exactly what you were looking for? What is the kind of career you are looking to make in the HR vertical? Are you looking for government jobs in HR or are you open for corporate assignments as well? Do let me know your preferences in the comments section at the end of this post.

For this post, I will be touching upon important aspects of resume writing and making it stand out from the rest.

The Shocking Truth about Resume Writing

I understand it takes time and efforts to update your resume and it takes a hell lot of time if you're doing it for the very FIRST time. It becomes even more demotivating that after spending hours on perfecting your resume you still don’t know where to start. Randomly you post your resume on various job portals and then just wait for God (some recruiter) to call you. Also, recruiters who call you often don’t understand your work profile or the oppurtunity they want to offer, doesn’t make you feel excited. You connect with various people (online as well as offline) and then you don’t hear back from them.

Depressed? You’re not alone in this world.

Most of us follow the above listed methodology and few of us are successful in getting the right job.

So, what does this mean to you as a job seeker.

Are there no jobs in the HR function?

Is the hiring for HR jobs in the industry been frozen?

Are people in the HR role, not moving or changing companies?

Share your thoughts by commenting on what can be the possible reasons for such a scenario in the industry. Let me hear your problems.

While the companies are expanding globally and huge investments are been made, managing people is one of the top most priority for any CEO. Hence, to manage his people effectively, all CEOs are looking for good HR thought leaders and practitioners for taking care of their workforce.

But then why are these HR jobs not visible to everyone? Are all the companies closing their HR jobs internally, which I believe is not possible. 

So where are all these jobs going and how are companies recruiting HR people when they are not advertising their positions in the market.

How to take charge of your job hunting Process?

My Approach...

I took a different approach in addressing this concern. Back in 2006, I started my HR career in a startup taking care of business development and recruitment for them. Even though I was doing fairly well with them, I was always longing to be on the other side of the table. In my initial days, I changed jobs frequently which made me look like a "job hopper" but my focus and intentions were clear. To work in the core HR department in a corporate. I finally got a break in HR in 2008 and where I am today is all on account of focussed and dedicated efforts in the RIGHT direction.

So, what all things we should do so as to find our dream job in the HR domain? Stay tuned as in my subsequent posts, I will be revealing more techniques on this subject. 

But for now, let's work and get our basics right.  

Master these 5 techniques to create a killer resume for your next job in the HR Function

1. A single copy of your resume would not cater to address all the Job requirements in the HR function.

Applying to all HR jobs with the same uncustomized resume is a total waste of time.

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For example, my current role is of an HR generalist or an HR Business Partner. If tomorrow I am looking for a Talent Acquisition role, I may customize my resume to highlight areas where I have significantly contributed in recruitment and hiring. If another day I am applying for a talent management role, I may not send the same copy which I made for my TA role.

Sounds logical? 

If you are aware of the role, try and present your credentials in a way that your resume is in line with the requirements mentioned in the job description

Note: A single solution will not be applicable to solving multiple problems.

2. Impress your recruiter by giving him what he wants

According to a research, recruiters hardly spend 30 seconds while going through resumes. To get their attention in these 30 seconds of time frame, you need to provide meaty information that quickly gets their attention. By making customizations I am not telling you to fake on anything. Its all about placing the most relevant information at the right place thereby helping or enabling the recruiter to quickly make decision as to whether or not to shortlist this resume for the next level.

Always consider your resume a mere knock on the door. Whether you will be invited inside totally depends on how good you are at creating a GREAT first impression.

3. Craft your resume for your next HR job in such a way that it portrays you as a solution provider.

Most of the companies today has what we call as “Job Descriptions”. Before applying to any job, read the JD carefully and then think and analyze as to what typical problems will be faced by an HR manager in such a role. Whether the JD is related to recruitment or training or any other role, the JD will help you to visualize as to what probable problems the company is facing and how you can be their LIFE SAVER.

The reality is no one is interested in listening to what you did way back when. They want to hear everything that you can do to help them TODAY. Right here. Right now.

People are looking for problem solvers and if you can’t articulate or present yourself as to how you can contribute in enhancing retention, improving revenues, cutting down on costs and making the company competitive, it would be better for you to sit and relax at home.

4. Avoid the biggest turn offs in resume writing 

Laszlo Bock, Head of people operations at Google shares the ways to correct the biggest mistakes he sees on resume made by people.

Laszlo Bock Head People Operations, Google

I have seen A LOT of resumes. Some are brilliant, most are just ok, many are disasters. The toughest part is that for 15 years, I've continued to see the same mistakes made again and again by candidates, any one of which can eliminate them from consideration for a job. What's most depressing is that I can tell from the resumes that many of these are good, even great, people. But in a fiercely competitive labor market, hiring managers don't need to compromise on quality. All it takes is one small mistake and a manager will reject an otherwise interesting candidate.

In his intriguing post here on Linkedin, he shares how to avoid common mistakes in resume like typo, length, formatting and the most important about lying.  Continuing on the similar lines, he wrote his second post in which he addressed key questions that were raised by readers in his first post. Read both his posts to get hands on advice from the People Manager of the company which is considered to be the 'World's Best Places to Work'

5. Try and quantify your achievements so that it can be measured

In continuation to his last post, Laszlo Bock shares his personal formula for writing winning resumes here. He suggests a simple formula in making your accomplishments stand out. Present each of your achievements as:

Accomplished [X] as measured by [Y] by doing [Z]

Makes sense? Definitely when it comes straight from the horse’s mouth.

Start mentioning your achievements with an active verb, numerically measuring it, giving it a baseline for comparison and detail out what you did to achieve your goal. Check out his post and learn a more logical way of presenting information in your resume.

So, just to summarize and conclude on what we've discussed in this post:-


Make Your HR Job Hunting process effective by:

a) Understanding the job market and why these jobs are not advertised online

b) Finding a job in HR is a systematic process

c) You need to have a focussed approach while applying for HR jobs


Make your resume stand out from the rest so that it gets recruiter's attention

a) One size doesn't fit all - customize your resume as per the desired role and DO NOT blast the same copy to all the recruiters.

b) How to showcase yourself as “Captain America” and that you will be the best bet for any hiring manager.

What was your most effective job hunting strategy?

What I've shared above is my experience on how to get jobs in the HR department. I believe I’m still on a learning journey on this topic and would love to hear what you’ve learnt on this topic. Feel free to share your views with an example of what you’ve done with a link and share your lessons in comments below so that we all can improve on our mission to get jobs in the HR department.

How Can You Create A Revolution In Your Own HR Career?

I was planning to pen down my thoughts around this subject from quite sometime, but eventually I was not able to get the right title for this post. I was thinking of using "CHANGE" or "DIFFERENCE" instead of using a rather bold word like "REVOLUTION" in the title. 

A mail from our very own Shauna Griffis (aka HR Minion) asking for contributions for the next carnival gave me this ROCK solid word "Revolution". Now my friend Ben Eubanks is hosting the next HR carnival on 8th April and he wanted to ask HR folks as to what they think needs a "REVOLUTION" in HR. 

Taking a cue from the mailer on conversations about advances in the HR space and how to shed light on the topics that nobody else was covering, I thought talking about the HR leadership competency will be the apt subject to create what we say as a "REVOLUTION" in the HR space.

Now friends these six leadership competencies are developed by a great HR thought leader and a guru Dave Ulrich

About Dave Ulrich...

Dave UlrichHR Leader, Thinker and Guru

Dave is credited with the development of the "HR Business Partnership" model and has written many influential books on the HR subject. According to him to tackle the worldwide challenges and economic crisis, HR folks must work and develop these 6 HR leadership competencies to thrive in today's unpredictable economy.

MASTER these Six key HR Leadership Competencies and take your HR career to the next level.

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1. Become a CREDIBLE Activist:

An HR person who can earn and maintain the trust of his employees and managers, while taking strong and proactive business positions. 

“Trust is the lubrication that makes it possible for organizations to work"

​--- Warren Bennis

For HR professionals working in high-performing organizations, it is essential to act as a credible activist. For them their words matter a lot and they will do what they say. For the,m commitment is everything. Such kind of integrity forms the foundation of their personal trust that eventually translates into their professional credibility. 

How to Develop this Competency and Become a Credible Activist in your Organization?

  • Develop STRONG and POSITIVE interpersonal skills to BRAND yourself as a CREDIBLE HR person
  • CREATE and DEVELOP a positive and flexible chemistry with your key stakeholders
  • Act as an INFLUENCER in the decision making process thereby translating it into business RESULTS
  • Take a STRONG position for all business issues which have not surfaced but can prove to be FATAL in future

2. Become a BUSINESS Ally:

An HR person who has a solid understanding of the business financials, strategies and context and uses them to make better decisions. 

I understand that at times it is felt by the top management that HR people does not understand the pulse of the business. They are not number crunchers and do not like to talk about business financials. I wrote a post on this subject and have laid a lot of emphasis on why knowing and understanding this information is the MOST important aspect to create a VALUE of your self and your department in the organization. 

Successful HR leaders invest a lot of time in developing their understanding of the market and business financials so that their opinions are not driven by emotions or from the so called "gut feeling" but they have a clear cut logic and data to support their thoughts and decisions. People at the top expect their HR leaders to think in the context of the business and the global environment. 

How to Develop this Competency and Become a BUSINESS Ally in your Organization?

  • BUILD your knowledge of finance and must FOCUS on execution
  • Get yourself ACQUAINTED with the line function
  • Get MULTI functional experience
  • LEARN how the business operates, margins and costs
  • GET a 360 degree view of the business

3. Become a STRATEGIC Architect:

An HR Person who can take the 'business strategic story' and translate it into HR practices and leadership behaviours

These HR professionals understand the global business context in terms of the social, political, economic, environmental, technological and demographic trends that affects the business either directly or indirectly. They also understand how their industry operates and what are the underlying dynamics in terms of competition, customer and supplier trends. 

With this knowledge they can develop a vision for their business and department for the future which can translate into key business strategies and annual plans and goals. 

How to Develop this Competency and Become a STRATEGIC Architect in your Organization?

  • THINK beyond your role
  • GET out of your comfort zone
  • GET connected to the strategic and transactional requiremnt of the business
  • GET exposure in business development
  • UNDERSTANDING how business makes money
  • KNOW the history of your business and narate it to inspire and motivate your people

4. Become an OPERATIONAL Executor:

An HR person who ensures things happen on time and everytime.

One of the key attributes of an HR Manager is to be an efficient executor. They need to ensure that daliy management taks are taken care of well within timelines. Management and allocation of resources holds key in becoming an operational executor. Stick to your HR yearly calendar and plans and cordinate with different processes or departments so that they all are well aligned to your goals and objectives.

How to Develop this Competency and Become an OPERATIONAL Executor in your Organization?

  • LEAD and ENSURE that all critical plans are completed in time
  • GET the top management buy-in for all your initiatives
  • DELEGATE tasks and make your team members accountable
  • BUILD on high achievement quotient and lead from the front
  • BE a part of active committees in the organization

An HR person who can shape HR practices that deliver talented people and capable organizations

Developing and building organizational capability by creating a strong system and process driven culture. Investing in your core compentencies and doing what you are good and known for. These capabilities include speed, innovation, customer focus, efficiency and creation of meaning and purpose at work. 

Developing and building organizational capability by creating a strong system and process driven culture. Investing in your core compentencies and doing what you are good and known for. These capabilities include speed, innovation, customer focus, efficiency and creation of meaning and purpose at work. 

HR managers can help line managers create meaning so that the capabilites of the organization reflect the deeper values of the organization. 

How to Develop this Competency and Become a TALENT MANAGER in your Organization?

  • IDENTIFY training needs of your employees complete them well in time
  • INVEST time in identifying and developing competencies of yourr people
  • INNOVATE and intregrate HR practices around your business issues
  • DO things differently. Let go the stereotype behavious

6. Become a CHANGE Agent:

An HR person who can make change happen and can help create new cultures, values and expectations

Effective HR professionals develop their organizations capacity for change and then translate it into effective change processes and structures. Ensuring a seamless integration of change processes that builds sustainable competitive advantage. They build the case for change based on market and business reality, and they overcome resistance to change by engaging key stakeholders in key decisions and building their commitment to full implementation. They sustain change by ensuring the availability of necessary resources including time, people, capital, and information, and by capturing the lessons of both success and failure.

How to Develop this Competency and Become a CHANGE AGENT in your Organization?

  • INVEST time in understanding technological advancements and how they can be utilised in your business
  • Building STRONG internal communication channels so as to create awareness on the change
  • DEVELOP on your persuassion and negotiation skills that will help in communicating change effectively
  • CREATE new systems and improve your existing ones

To cut the story short, this is a great time to be in HR as the future looks very promising. As HR professionals, my sincere advice to you is to master these 6 competencies as they will add explicit value to you and the organization. 

Do let me know you which are your weakest competencies and how do you plan to master them. Let me hear your views in the comment section below.

Books by Dave Ulrich

HR Home Truths Busted – Get To Know The Real HR


I simply love the HR carnivals and always try to contribute whenever possible. So this time when I came to know that the fun loving Dwane from  Dovetail Software blog was going to host it, I knew this would going to be a different one.  He is looking for posts that talk about the truths you have learned in your time in HR. As we all know, it doesn’t take long to learn some really “interesting” things when you work in HR so I fully expect you to send in some pretty awesome posts.


So here is the stuff that I learnt from my and few experiences shared by my friends who are taking various roles in the HR function with renowned brands .


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