Article: It’s time to innovate people's agenda to create unique experiences: Rohit Hasteer, CHRO, Housing.com

Strategic HR

It’s time to innovate people's agenda to create unique experiences: Rohit Hasteer, CHRO, Housing.com

It’s an organisation's responsibility in the current times, to leverage scalable technology to provide flexibility and build deeper connections with their employees, believes Housing.com’s CHRO Rohit Hasteer.
It’s time to innovate people's agenda to create unique experiences: Rohit Hasteer, CHRO, Housing.com

The pandemic has been a real eye opener for the employers. The increase in exodus of employees from companies i.e ‘The Great Resignation’ has put the spotlight on a key point which was taken for granted during ‘normal days’ - Employee Experience. 

In an exclusive interview with People Matters, Housing.com’s Chief Human Resource Officer Rohit Hasteer shared his insights on the seismic job it is to revamp strategies to create a thriving culture for employees and how employers and leaders alike can solve this with the reinvention of employee value propositions. Here are the excerpts from the interview: 

What does the concept 'employee value proposition' hold for Housing.com in a post COVID Scenario?

The pandemic has changed the relationship between people and their work; hence, it’s a no-brainer that employee value proposition too needs to evolve to reflect this change. The post COVID era is also the era of the great resignation. Today, people are not looking only at monetary benefits but the entire character of the organisation and multitude of benefits that come along. Hence, one of the prime agendas for any workplace should be to offer a robust employee value proposition to its people. With alignment to this thought, REA India’s employee value proposition focusses on a four-pronged promise to our people: Genuine Care, Empowerment, Egalitarian Treatment & Transparent two-way communication.

With organisations still dealing with the Great Resignation, how can leaders better prepare for talent retention?  

Retention has always been a challenge for organisations, but it has become all the more challenging in the last few years as the job market has become red hot; especially for the Tech folks wherein everyone has multiple offers in hand today. I feel leaders can better prepare for talent retention by focusing on some of the below aspects:

  • Customising Experiences: Today’s diverse workforce comprises different talent archetypes wherein the needs and motivators of one set of people may be different than others. Organisations can do well on retention by moving away from a one-size fits all approach and curating personalised experiences for top talent.
  • Flexibility & Autonomy: The younger generation today yearns for more autonomy and flexibility at work. They want to be empowered and expect a greater sense of ownership which in turn results in building a self-determined & engaged workforce.
  • Offering Genuine Care: Take GENUINE care of people. If people see that the organisation values them and recognizes their contributions at work, they are expected to stick around more. organisations should look at providing an array of benefits to people which covers their physical, mental and financial health.
  • Pave way for the future:  People across industries & roles are always interested to know how organisation’s plans meet their future plans; therefore, it is important to glue and align people to values and vision of organisation transparently and share the future possibilities of their roles. This has become even more pertinent in today’s time when a large part of the workforce is working virtually & is not able to connect to the larger objective of organisation easily.

How are you enabling awareness, access and adoption within revamped EVP to attract Gen-Z talent?

One of the key strength areas of our people's practices is two way and transparent communication practices that are highly appreciated by our people. We’re enabling awareness, access & adoption in the following ways:

  • Technology: We are leveraging technology innovatively to host several of the provisions within our EVP on HRIS. Homepage banners, pop up images, etc. on HRIS, WhatsApp and Slack campaigns are some of the examples.
  • Leadership Talk: Our leadership team has greatly helped in enabling awareness about our EVP via frequent connect sessions with their respective teams and All India Town Halls thereby creating high performing synergies.
  • HR Connect:  The HR team has been on its toes in ensuring that people are wired to the company’s EVP through our unique people practices like ‘Feeling at Home Hour’ connect sessions, ‘Shout-Outs’ etc.  
  • Social Media: A company’s social media page could become is a one stop place for all things that go inside the organisation: celebrations, announcements, new policies, practices, etc. that gives a flavour to current employees as well as potential hires on our culture

What points HR leaders can keep in mind while enhancing employee experience for employees working from home as well as returning to office?

Enhancing employee experience in a hybrid set up can be challenging; especially when people are working from home because most of them are not able to experience the small nuances of culture which one otherwise experiences in a physical set up. This could lead to erosion of organisational culture in the long run and make people feel detached from the overall organisation. HR should focus on following:

Preserving culture by constant reiteration of the organisation vision, mission, values. Make sure there are well-defined events & activities planned to ensure people come closer to the values that organisation stands for.As we now live in the hybrid world, people may be distant by geography, but they should be connected by the organisational purpose. It is essential that the leaders keep this purpose as a centre of all conversations to keep the positivity and passion alive.

Strong personal connections make people happier and healthier, which can translate into superlative work performance. People managers should be trained and sensitised to safeguard they make regular check-ins to ensure their team’s holistic well-being and offer support whenever they are in need. Similarly, planning periodical social outings will ensure that the team stays connected with one another.

What should be an organisation's focus as we transition into the new paradigms of working?

I believe organisations focus should primarily be on fostering deeper connections and creating a shared purpose which will help in ensuring that people feel invested in the organisation irrespective of what is the new paradigm of working. Secondly, as more and more organisations go virtual, it is instrumental for organisations to leverage scalable technology and provide flexibility to their people. Thirdly, how organisations understand the aspirations of their people and help them succeed in their career will be a key differentiator in attracting & retaining talent. Last but not the least, in a VUCA world when the talent war is so fierce, organisations must focus on innovating their people's agenda to create unique experiences. For example, at REA India we have a one of its kind practice called Early Cheque-In wherein people get a part of their salary on the 15th of every month thereby providing financial liquidity which is also helpful in unforeseen situations.

Also, hybrid workspaces are the future for the generations ahead and leaders can ensure that all the  people have real-time and virtual collaboration tools which enables them to connect and stay wired like in a physical set up.

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Topics: Strategic HR, #Interview, #EmployeeExperience, #RedrawingEVP

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