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Definition of a Human Resources Professional

Comments 52 Comments   Views 886 Views     About 07-04-2010

Nowadays, as part of providing an ideal recruiting experience to candidates who aspire to apply to an X company, quite a lot of companies are evolving new strategies. I have been part of an organization which had a Recruitment Help Desk. When a candidate walks in without a prior appointment, he/she is directed by the security to drop his resume in a Box which is provided there for this specific task. I know it would seem a little in-human when as a candidate I insist that I want to meet a HR person. It is impossible for recruitment professionals to meet each and every walk-in. I am saying this with due respect to the emotional side of the question, at the same time also respecting the ground reality that exists in majority of the companies.

ALMOST always, recruitment teams are under-staffed. In case of a scheduled interview, the Help Desk would come into play where the candidate is made to wait, as the recruiter is being informed. During this period, the candidate can actually relax, read newspapers/magazines, use the washroom or simply grab a coffee. This facility doubles up as a parking place for a candidate if there are multiple interviews on a single day. The people who man the helpdesk are provided with food coupons which are supposed to give to the candidates to use in the cafeteria, in case its lunch/dinner time and if the candidate is in between interviews and has adequate time to grab a bite. This saves the candidate the trouble of stepping out for a meal and at the same time ensures that it conveys a positive image of the organization.

After all this, before the candidate leaves after his interviews are over, he is requested to go back to the helpdesk, where he is given a feedback sheet on his recruiting experience. Trust me, there are companies who go to such limits to ensure they are giving a positive and excellent recruitment experience to its candidates.

I do agree there are rude people out there to malign the image of their organizations and also HR as a fraternity, but at that same time there are people and organizations like the one I mentioned, which go that extra mile, not just a mile, but miles, to ensure that the candidate takes back a very good image of the organization irrespective of the outcome of his candidature.

The organization I am talking about, belongs to ITES industry and known for its best practices. I agree and understand that organizations across industries have varying processes and hence the disparity. That is precisely when someone would want to join an X company in the first place.

I would still maintain that a HR professional should have the qualities I mentioned. When we talk about HR professionals who are unapproachable, unprofessional, I know the ilk you are talking about. But PEOPLE are our tools. For a software engineer, his tools are his coding skills and the platform you works on. Similarly for all professionals. But for us, its people. Unless we are engaged with them, understand them, empathize with them and be there when they need us, I don’t think we become HR professionals in the true sense.

I agree, there are more aberrations to this theory than conformists, but also know a lot of HR professionals who are like my definition. In fact, I have based my definition on such people only. It’s not a theoretical definition. It’s the ground-reality-induced-definition.

According to me a true HR professional is somebody who has a huge affinity for people, one who has the burning desire to study people and acknowledge differences not just in the mindset, but also from a behavioural point of view. To be a successful HR professional, it is important to have an imbibed humaneness, ingenuity and the ability to handle multiple perspectives, all the time not losing sight of the short term & long term goals. Often, we find ourselves in conflicting situations where multiple perspectives offer a ripe ground for taking unpopular decisions. But the ability to take such decisions with conviction and stand by our own & the organization’s principles and ethics, takes a special character, which is imperative in somebody who wants to make it big in HR.

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Ramakrishna Varma
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Ramakrishna Varma 07-04-2010  
Hello Harish,

Great take.

I know many HR professionals who live up to this definition but wish many more would join the league. And I wish more companies would setup recruitment help desks like Deloitte does. I really liked the idea.

Good luck and best wishes for your blog.

I know you would rock and soon make one of the best HR Blogs in the world!!

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Claudia 07-04-2010  
Thank you Harish for penning down your thoughts. We`ll be waiting for more.

Not being a HR professional I didn`t dare give that definition myself, but some time ago I asked my father who`s been in the HR field his entire life.

He said that a HR professional is that person who has empathy, an analytical mind, objectivity, cares about people, knows how to communicate and knows human behavioral sciences which mean more than psychology and sociology.

Glad to read your ellaborate take on same

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