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Many human resources professionals are taking on a new role. Instead of simply leading, managing and working in the profession, they're using their knowledge to become entrepreneurs and create products and services that are transforming the HR industry in a way that it has never been impacted before.
In India, the size of the HR tech market is estimated at about USD $700 million annually and growing. There is an increase in HR transactions as well. That is the key trend that panelists discussed in a special session at the SHRM India Annual Conference 2017, moderated by Pankaj Bansal, Co-Founder & CEO - PeopleStrong. Presenting the point of view of CHROs were Sanjay Dutt, Head - Global Capability Development & India HR, EXL, Vivek Paranjpe, Senior Advisor & Facilitator - SHRM India and S. Venkatesh, Mgmt. Board Member & President, Group HR - RPG Enterprises. To present the insights from an HR entrepreneur's perspective were Aditya Malik, CEO & MD - Talentedge, Sanjay Lakhotia, Co-founder - Aamoksh One Eighty and Ishan Gupta, Managing Director - Udacity India.
The CHRO Perspective -
Venkatesh from RPG Enterprises initiated the discussion by raising a fundamental question that resonates with all CHROs across the world who are involved in buying HR services from external experts. He said "Tell me something that I don't know". That set the theme for the other challenges shared by the panel:
The HR Entrepreneur Perspective -
The business of HR is complicated. It is also dependent on funding and exposed to the issues related to the venture capitalist ecosystem. Their challenges of upsizing, IPR and having a product that can be monetized are real. Even so, the business of HR is coming of age in India. Some underlying concerns that came up during the discussion were: -
The HR professionals from the audience brought out pertinent issues, such as the decision-making time involved in larger organizations vs. smaller ones when purchasing an HR solution. This is because the core aspects like understanding the product, the need for it and its fit within the organization are the parameters. Pankaj explained how at times a junior person from the team engages, and then realizes he is not empowered to make a decision.
In conclusion, we need to be cognizant of the fact that CHROs should be responsible for being honest and upfront about the need for any product, and the HR solution providers need to spend time understanding the company, the three types of buyers - commercial buyer, technology buyer, end users (that is, the HR community) and finally, engage with all three simultaneously, not sequentially.
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