Article: HCL - Making early candidate experience engaging

Employee Engagement

HCL - Making early candidate experience engaging

In order to provide a standard streamlined experience to candidates, HCL adopted an onboarding platform which consolidated multiple legacy applications

Providing a standard streamlined experience to candidates is very important for building a discernible employer brand.


In India, within the IT industry, the gap between releasing the offer and the person joining can be as high as three months. If the candidate is not engaged within this period, the chances of losing the person to other employers increase drastically. The first 90 day period after hiring is when majority of the employees make up their mind about staying with an organization for a long-term. Ensuring that the pre-joining experience is extended to the first few weeks after joining is a crucial and challenging aspect of hiring. Providing a standard streamlined experience to candidates is thus very important for building a discernible employer brand. However, with induction locations across locations, it had been an arduous task for HCL Technologies to provide this level of standardization for all candidates.

Onboarding  - a key metric in early candidate experience

Due to ambiguities and delay in the onboarding process, billable loss was one of the key metrics affected in the entire process at HCL—directly resulting in loss of revenue. For instance, when an employee is not equipped within the first two days of joining, he/she cannot be deployed and this adversely effects the bottom-line. Further, verification during volume hiring poses various operational challenge; for instance, identifying fraudulent documents. The legal list for valid documents is long and there are combination of documents which can be applicable to all the lists. Undergoing all the verification and ensuring legal compliance of all documents is thus a challenging and time-consuming task.

As a result of the stretched onboarding process, candidate experience was taking a hit due to delay in getting the appropriate documentation or induction. When candidates renege because of poor onboarding experience, finding a replacement becomes a time- and cost-intensive effort. All of this has an adverse effect on the employer brand.

Identifying and adopting a strategic platform

In order to meet all challenges associated with onboarding, HCL adopted the platform from SuccessFactors, since it provided a central solution for not only onboarding, but all HR processes. The tool has been configured catering to the key issues faced in the organization when onboarding the employees. The processes underlying the technology has now enabled all stakeholders in the organization execute their respective actions (in terms of seat allocation/ laptop/access cards) in time enabling a better experience. This ensures that the new joinee is ready to be productive on Day 2 with all administrative activities completed. Moreover, Success Factors’ robust modules are in sync with all the legal requirements, thereby complying with the statutory requirements. As a part of the technology suite, HCL has also created candidate portals where new joinees can learn about the organization and its culture. Personalized SMS are now being sent out to candidates and Skype calls allowed senior leaders to communicate with the employees on induction day. The adopted platform has helped HCL build a standardized process for all the involved stakeholders across all geographies HCL operates in. SuccessFactors’ e-verify module also allowed the verification manager to complete the verification and re-verification being handled within the system and the relevant notification reaches the people concerned 180 days before the documents expire. Therefore, document maintenance has become a lot simpler as they are all digitally stored; system defined logic makes it easier to purge the documents after employee has exited the company.

Taking onboarding platform and processes global

The US launch was the first phase of HCL’s onboarding program. Therefore, teams involved in the launch in US have underlined a log of issues that cropped up. The teams have devised the programs based on such learning in order to avoid similar mistakes for other geographical launches. A configuration workbook has also been maintained which archives all the technical requirements, which will act as a reference point for any future changes being made.  


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Topics: Employee Engagement, #RootedinLearning

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