n an exclusive interaction with Dataquest, Mr. Sriram Vaidhyanathan, Chief Human Resource Officer of BankBazaar

Automation is revolutionary but not close to replace result-oriented people: BankBazaar CHRO

With introduction of revolutionary transformations and automation in companies as well as carious other technologies, there is a drift of job cuts in the IT industry witnessed every year. Observing these annual trends of tech acceptance and employee layoffs, professionals are expected to enhance their skill-sets and revive enthusiasm. Undoubtedly, there is a lot to dig, note and amend for professionalsd and companies to realize.

In an exclusive interaction with Dataquest, Mr. Sriram Vaidhyanathan, Chief Human Resource Officer of BankBazaar divulges about HR policies, appraisal process and how the work culture. He strongly believes that HR has a vital role in the growth of an organization and reveals what they look for in a candidate.

Excerpts from the interaction below:

At BankBazaar, how does the HR policy work in benefit of the employees as well as the organization? And, how do you ensure the feedback is taken positively on both sides?

 Every policy making process at BankBazaar includes thorough employee participation and it is important for all employees to vote on every policy decision before it is brought into force. This makes policy making a collective effort; and employees are ensured that their views and contribution are valued.

BankBazaar also has an open door policy. In a rapidly growing mid-size organization, comprising of a highly skilled multitasking workforce working in individual roles, information is core as everyone needs to be on the same page and work in tandem for the organization to grow at a self-sustaining pace. Indeed, pursuing an open work culture breaks down barriers between decision-makers and the actual executors. This brings in many advantages to the organization along with the employees and ensures there is a smooth flow of communication at every level of management.


With automation vitally positioning itself in the companies, a large chunk of mid-level performers seem to be at risk. What skill-sets are you looking for in fresh graduates and the current employees?

While automation can improve results and change the nature of many jobs executed by professionals, it is nowhere close to replacing people who drive these results. There will be always changes and new developments from a technology perspective, if we are to make progress. The key is to stay on top of these changes and be drivers for these changes. While the relevant skill and experience is always a plus, a sense of curiosity and a drive to do things differently, coupled with an inclination and ability to learn on-the-go are skills that would always have a huge value.


On what parameters do the BankBazaar employs a candidate?

 Skill-set, competency, learning ability and enthusiasm together with attitude towards collective and collaborative working are the fundamental parameters to look for in a candidate, at BankBazaar.

While skills and competency are at the heart of any hiring process, we also look beyond these skills, and this has contributed to our sustained growth. We believe that the employee’s attitude towards work and life are also equally crucial like the skills they bring. As a growing company, we understand the need to work together as a team and/to take the company to the next level. For this, it is essential that we have a team that cannot just do great work, but also talk to each other for the successful completion of work as a cohesive unit.


How does your appraisal system work and what benefits are there for performers in the long run?

Our appraisal looks at how well the individual has worked towards clearly articulated goals and how much he/she has accomplished. We do not have a rating system or the bell curve. We give employees a 360-degree feedback and a plan to improve/increase their skills and competency. At BankBazaar, we see appraisals as a celebration of individual and collective accomplishments. Performers, in the long run, get more and more aligned to the future of the organization and to its business goal. Over time, they add value directly to themselves and the organization; as well as feel valued and proud of their contributions.


Observing the recent cut-offs by India’s leading IT companies, how can we expect BankBazaar to react? Do you believe it will continue in the coming years?

 If I see from a long run business perspective, well-planned organizations on the growth track with a clear vision of the business plan and product roll out will not be impacted. As for us, BankBazaar is well set to invest in Human Resources and will continue to hire as per plan with the aim of acquiring talent who can add more value to the organization.


Do you believe Indian education system is able to bridge the gap between demands and supply of productive and skilled professionals?

 Definitely! The Indian education system still produces high-quality professionals with some the best technical skills. It may be essential to provide reskilling in certain soft skills, but from a technology perspective, we do have sound professionals and an updated educational procedure.


According to you, what challenges does an employee face after working in the industry for 3-4 years and how can they overcome it?

 During my tenure, I have observed that many professionals within years of their job, eventually loose in interest in learning and get passive towards new technology or skills. They are less curious to learn and their learning skills start atrophying. It is an ascertain fact that our industry is ever-changing with new technologies coming up every now and then. So, it is imperative for professionals to retain the urge to learn and remain future ready always.


IT industry has always been looked upon for mass hiring but with yearly trend of job cuts now, will the scenario change for the industry or has it already changed?

 Well, I would say that the industry is moving to the next level of Maturity curve pushed by:

  • Disruptive technological changes
  • Global political influence
  • Years of inbuilt redundancy

This can be seen as a trend and cannot be stopped immediately. But what is convincing is that certain specific types of jobs will be left behind and at the same time, more relevant new jobs and opportunities will emerge for skilled professionals in the industry.

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