We talk to Thyag Venkatesan and Shubham Gupta, Co-founders of Virkware to understand the role of a talent marketplace in reimagining existing ways of talent management.
How do you see a robust talent marketplace solving some of the most pressing HR challenges around employee experience, engagement, and growth?
The concern around employee experience and engagement has increased since the pandemic and the ongoing transition to a hybrid working future. Today, many organisations struggle to find the right solutions applicable to their unique context. Existing initiatives around employee experience and engagement are largely non-tech related.
Talent Marketplace solutions are emerging as the go-to solution for organisations looking to take meaningful strides in improving employee experience and engagement. They provide a systemic approach to understanding each employee's growth aspirations and providing them with visibility and easy connectivity to existing opportunities within the organisation.
Talent marketplace helps employees record their professional aspirations related to new/improved skills, roles they want to try, colleagues they want to work with, and locations where they are interested in working. They help tackle disengagement and attrition by allowing employees who feel stuck in their job or title to experiment with new roles and get more lateral mobility. Those who want to develop new skills, increase their network, get promoted or achieve compensation goals can easily find the right mentors to guide them. Burnout concerns are addressed by allowing the redeployment of talent much more smoothly.
What are some of the necessary features of a talent marketplace today that give it an edge over other generic HRMS software?
The fundamental difference between HRMS and talent marketplace offerings is that the latter is employee-centric. With a clear focus on the employees and the ability to capture and share their skills, talent marketplaces prove essential for their professional journey. Talent marketplace solutions have features that enable organisational agility and can provide companies with valuable, real-time insights into their employees without it being another tick-in-the-box activity.
Employees can engage with the platform to experiment with new roles, add/improve skills, and collaborate with others across the organisation without worrying about geographical or departmental boundaries. Talent marketplace also provides solutions fine-tuned to help employees communicate their achievements across the organisation much more quickly than other HRMS platforms. For a company, this means easier and more effective discovery of people across the organisation based on their experience, skills, and interests and deploying them to the right roles.
Talent Marketplace solutions like Virkware also go one step further and integrate with existing collaboration, learning & HRMS solutions in a complimentary manner. Thus HRMS data can be leveraged to facilitate features of Virkware, and feedback from Virkware can potentially feed into the rewards or structured review modules of HRMS, enabling a symbiotic enhancement of employee experience and HR Management.
With a talent marketplace, there is the possibility of creating a vibrant network/community within the organisation.
What areas within talent management does Virkware's talent marketplace help create a difference? What are some of the future innovations you intend to bring onto the platform?
Virkware's talent marketplace helps with increasing engagement, performance and retention. Based on the hands-on experience operating across multiple geographies and industry sectors, we have developed and created a simple but powerful platform for employees. One that helps companies and employees comprehensively and intuitively connects.
The more employees interact with the platform, the better the built-in AI engine gets in providing helpful historical trend analysis and forward-looking recommendations. These recommendations help improve collaboration opportunities, provide mentor-buddy connections, and help employees build the skills that they want to.
To be genuinely effective and address the changing dynamics and expectations of employees, it's important to innovate and stay relevant constantly.
Some of the planned innovations on our roadmap include enabling individuals to get a holistic understanding of their skills compared to others and receive recommendations on opportunities within the firm that suit them. We also want to provide managers with an additional lever to take action to address goals related to diversity, mentoring etc., by making our talent marketplace holistic and practical guidance to employees on mentors, jobs and training. With a clear understanding of individual skill levels and support for hands-on learning & 360 feedback, our talent marketplace will also help HR run mass reskilling and up-skilling programs efficiently.
What core guiding principles allow Virkware's talent marketplace to be future-ready in enabling HR professionals to address their talent concerns as they emerge?
Virkware provides companies with future-ready, employee-centric solutions to address some of the most pressing concerns around engagement, talent development, collaboration, and skill building. Easy customisation is one of the chief guiding principles. While we have out-of-the-box solutions for our features, customers can customise them to meet their needs. For example, customers can use the Virkware skills framework or customise it if they have an existing internal framework for skills assessments. Additionally, customers can create engagement surveys and track the company's mood through real-time measures.
We also focus on the easy extension of our services. With a clear product roadmap, we provide future capabilities. This is supported by our ability to keep our cloud-based solution updated with the latest features in talent management as we release them. Our strategic vision is also to have best-in-class customer success (integrated with customer support) and product lab functions that will collaborate closely with our customers and make them part of our product development journey.
How can a talent marketplace solve the issue of productivity in a hybrid world of work and enhance the organisation's existing talent mobility process for better results?
Companies often fail to tap into the available internal talent pool. Managers have work or ideas but often suffer from a lack of capacity or skills in their teams. More work often results in higher budget allocation for new employees, contractors or consultants. A talent marketplace provides an additional channel to source talent - the existing employees in the organisation. For some of the work that does not require full-time or long-term resources, managers can post the “virk” or initiative and source for people. Employees within the organisation with the interest and the ability to spare the time required can help deliver this virk. This way, more work gets done with existing resources, increasing overall productivity.
A secondary effect driving productivity is associated with the benefits that organisations receive from having employees engage in the talent marketplace. The benefits lead to reduced attrition and increased internal mobility. This naturally drives higher productivity by reducing the costs associated with replacing employees. Employees get to try out new roles through delivering virks - as a result, lateral mobility can be leveraged to retain employees who might leave because they feel stagnated or do not find a fit with their current team. They can also increase their network, build stronger ties within the organisation, tap into mentors to improve their work, and receive the proper guidance. With our robust platform, Virkware helps boost productivity and drive engagement.