Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool
Published by the Society for Human Resource Management
attitudes and employee relationships. People and Operations. Fiserv India
. It expresses anthe essence of‘valueorganization in a entirety engages current organization’s proposition’—the of its culture.”
Manmohan Bhutani. systems.Employer brand is about capturing an way that “and prospective talent. providing a new focal point for the company. Vice President.
The Value of the Employer Brand in India
“The Employer Brand—A Strategic Tool to Attract.com Clinical research organizations (CRO) Mukund Mandayam. In India’s Global Powerhouses: How They Are Taking on the World. Inc. Recruit and Retain Talent” highlights that HR uses the employer brand for three main reasons: 1) organizational culture and employee fit.”
Nirmalya Kumar India Unleashed. At the same time.. and based on research studies and on-the-ground experience in India. where even sophisticated people outside India see it as associated with call centers and software engineers. and free press as well as the relatively peaceful coexistence of its multicultural. especially compared to China […] However. CHEP India Pvt.Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool
Today.” He notes important exceptions where the stereotypical India image can be beneficial.quintiles. and 3) clinical research organizations (CRO). cash) […] India is poor. Human Resources. out that brand building—the image and the recognition—is a long-term effort that requires substantial resources. Vice President. benefits and opportunities to develop and promote their employer brand to gain market share in India. an effective employer brand is essential for competitive advantage. Their stories reveal an intense focus to connect with their Indian marketplace by using many strategies successfully demonstrated in the global marketplace. etc. multi-religious population—has a positive image. the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) interviewed Indian HR executives in three diverse industry sectors: 1) the banking and financial services industry (BFSI). are not consistent with creating and managing […] consumer products. Increasingly.fiserv.”—a common term used in India to refer to India’s corporate sector—aims to positively build on opportunities as the world economy strengthens. Quintiles India www. ultimately. The evolving and expanding focus on Brand India is one of many great changes occurring in the Indian business landscape. the employer brand is an important differentiator in India for talent management. to expand and grow. this article presents insight into the employer brand as a differentiator for talent management in India. 2) global supply chain solutions. Fiserv India www. the employer brand is a long-term strategy with a transparent message that promotes the organization as an employer of choice. author Nirmalya Kumar points
The rise of India. and 3) retaining talent with corporate values and a team-based culture. 20093
The increasing focus on competitive advantage is leading many firms to rethink their employer brand. Though it is not intended to exclusively represent the employer brand experiences of all Indian corporations. This article provides a glimpse into the world of three specific Indian companies—each relatively new in India—and offers an insider’s view of their respective challenges.). Written at a meta level. he says that “Brand India is also complex. such as in niches related to what may be seen as “exotic India” (foods or fabrics. large private sector. Director.”2
Banking and financial services industry (BFSI) Manmohan Bhutani. when it comes to soft power (ideas and values). and the employer brand is a prime example of a progressive HR practice in India. and non-Indian HR professionals and organizational leaders learning about evolving human resource management practices in India. People and Operations. multinational corporations exploring doing business in India. As highlighted by Indian management researcher and author Jyotsna Bhatnagar. 2) positive outcomes for recruiting.e. To gain an understanding of how the concept of employer brand is being leveraged by multinational corporations with operations in India.1 At its most effective. In terms of hard power (i.com Global supply chain solutions Vijayan Pankajakshan. “India. The fit between employer and employee is important
Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool 1
. can be summarized in four words: from local to global. Brand India—because of its history. giving a broad perspective. “The shackles of Brand India.chep. Ltd. www. Indian corporations are becoming intentionally strategic to utilize the employer brand to attract and retain talent and. Inc. Director – Human Resources. this information will be of interest to both Indian and non-Indian HR professionals: Indian corporations seeking to learn more about the value proposition of the employer brand from an HR perspective.
employer brands. human resources and human capital performance in India have become increasingly important. Ltd. such as RMSI and Google. the employer brand in India has a strong value proposition. rather. and the HRD scorecard became a method to measure effective people development activities. “Infosys. there has been an increase in progressive HR practices as well as an expansion of different types of HR terminology. The employer brand strongly supports corporate brands. resulting in happy employees. In the past 10 years or so. The HR profession in India began in the
“ Employer brand values in our company are particularly significant. the human resource profession in India has become increasingly sophisticated.5 In the 2009 book The Changing Face of People Management in India. Bhatnagar. management researchers Pawan S. diversification. such as human resource management (HRM).for hiring compatibility. many MNCs have a policy that enables the company employees to fire people without any explanation (known as “termination without cause”). they focused on building a productive workplace.
1991 and subsequent economic reforms. “For other organizations in India. the value of the employer brand in India is multifaceted and mirrors those values seen as critical by most successful multinational corporations. using Indian human resource management practices combined with best practices from the West that fit the needs of the organization. Yet. and their brands were the result of that foundation. HR’s role in effectively using the employer brand has tremendously expanded and grown in importance. the key to a successful employer brand is to ensure that expectations are fully aligned with the realities of working for the organization. CHEP India Pvt. expansion
1920s with concern for labor welfare in factories. Consequently. 2010)
2 Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool
. which already have strong
and internationalization. A brief historical snapshot provides background about the increasing role of human resource management in India and the employer brand as a strategic HR tool. with the goal of gaining global recognition in a sustainable manner. The profession further matured in the 1980s and was more commonly known as human resource development (HRD).” says Mr. the HR profession evolved. the importance of the HR function dramatically increased. with core corporate values at its foundation. their goal is to ‘live’ the brand. If effectively marketed internally and externally. With the arrival of many multinational corporations (MNCs) in India.”4 As illustrated in Figure 1.”
Vijayan Pankajakshan. With the liberalization of the Indian economy in
Figure 1 | Six Key Points for Effective Employer Brand in India
Attract/ retain best talent
Quality/ customer service
Employer of choice
Core corporate values
Strong value proposition
Source: Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool (SHRM. the focus was on HRD as a key tool for business survival. research shows that Indian companies do not always intentionally develop employer branding interventions. and vice versa. Globalization has led to a blending of work cultures—East and West. Vice President of People and Operations at Fiserv India. As Indian firms focus on strategies of turnaround. In the 1990s. A powerful employer brand has the capacity to attract and retain talent and represent quality to its customers. expanding in the 1960s into three areas—labor welfare. It continues to evolve.” says Manmohan Bhutani. “Every employer brand is an investment that should demonstrate a return comparable to other forms of business investment. Wipro and TCS did not intentionally build their brands. Director – Human Resources. Ingmar Björkman and Virender Singh emphasize that global HR policies are now being modified to appropriately (and culturally) fit Indian companies. industrial relations and personnel administration. After India’s independence from Great Britain in 1947. For example. Budhwar. as the global economic crises and demand contraction
have brought to the fore the criticality and urgency of environment care and protection issues as an important criteria for maintenance and development of goods and services into the future.
payments and insurance industries. growth in the health insurance sector. Director of Human Resources at Quintiles India. receivable management and collections services for investments. The Fiserv values describe the characteristics we respect and behaviors we expect from all associates. As illustrated in the descriptions of three diverse industry sectors. allowing for rapid patient recruitment and faster study start-ups.
the preferred offshoring partner for the BFSI sector. and thus the power of their employer brand is in development. CRO had the role of an outsourcing service for clinical trial management. ECG services. develop and retain talent in the highly competitive Indian marketplace. drug safety/pharmacovigilance. the employer brand is critical to attain a powerful corporate footprint in modern India as it moves deeper into the global marketplace. commercial. The IT services portfolio of Fiserv India includes application development. technology solutions and e-commerce systems for the financial services industry. testing. title verification. mortgage and insurance industries. with an explanation provided when someone is removed from their position. client reporting. Fiserv has more than 2. government policies favoring R&D.
In India. support. many CROs have begun offering comprehensive management of complex drug trial processes. the focus is to become an employer of choice within its respective sector. biostatistics. Vice President of People and Operations at Fiserv India. “Being the largest CRO [clinical research organization] in India and the only fully integrated biopharmaceutical services company offering clinical. in the past 10 years. Human Resources.6 These changes point to the importance of MNCs being locally sensitive in terms of talent management in the Indian space and. Fiserv. this global HR policy is being modified in operations in India. central laboratory services. information security and regulatory compliance. India was not a preferred destination for major global pharmaceutical companies. (NASDAQ: FISV) is a world leader in information management. Today. clinical monitoring and site management. fund posting and disbursement. Quintiles India is located in four major cities: Mumbai. with the steady rise in global demand for world-class clinical trial management capacity and productivity. states.”
Mukund Mandayam. The key services include access to patients. Within a short span. the impact on the employer brand in India from the standpoint of the company’s reputation as an employer of choice. It also offers near-shore services from Costa Rica. ultimately. Ahmedabad. notes. Three major themes emerged in these interviews: 1) Each of the three Indian corporations is relatively new to the Indian marketplace. This is particularly true for upcoming industry sectors. “The establishment and adherence to ‘corporate values’ goes a long way in ensuring a purposeful. Recently. Fiserv started its India operations in October 2005. as seen through the eyes of the three Indian HR executives interviewed by SHRM. the CRO sector in
Spotlight on Three Indian Industry Sectors
The employer brand experience in India. 2) For each organization. All studies are conducted to FDA and ICH GCP (good clinical practices) standards. 3) A top strategic focus of the employer brand is to attract.000 employees in India and operates through multiple delivery centers in Noida and Pune. Other advantages are that Quintiles India has solid relationships with leading medical centers and experienced English-speaking investigators. maintenance. Remuneration practices are another example of HR policies that need to be modified to fit local India standards. Quintiles India
Quintiles India operates in the midst of a rapidly growing pharmaceutical market. India’s highly literate population provides fast.” Initially. Yet. efficient access to broad population groups with common and special disease profiles. as companies work on their employer brand to become recognized icons in the areas of expertise. consulting and capital solutions worldwide lends itself to being branded as an employer of choice by potential employees. Slowly. data management. Inc. the India operations of Fiserv have achieved key industry certifications that demonstrate its commitment to process maturity. unified and high-performance employer brand. a “ critical forglobal brand is competitive advantage.this policy goes against Indian culture and legislation. Bangalore and Gurgaon. has both differences and similarities. Clinical research (CR) is a growing field in India. The BPO (business process outsourcing) portfolio includes account setup and management. Up until the 1990s. such as clinical research outsourcing. and tertiary care and hospitals available for clinical trials. They are the foundation for a common culture and pronounce the meaning of Fiserv employer brand. The company helps clients take advantage of a well-established corporate infrastructure. As Mukund Mandayam. architecture and infrastructure management for banking. project management and regulatory services. with a goal to become
Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool 3
. Director. As Manmohan Bhutani.”
A Fortune 500 company.
stock. ports. The business model is based on pooling and sharing of resources between companies in an industry (e. time the customers’ products are placed on our assets and distance travelled.9
“ Employees who feel good about the synergy between
the business model and brand values tend to stay longer and be more engaged. The unique
combination of product and embedded service significantly reduces not only direct costs but indirect wastages of product damage and also provides an opportunity for customers to engage in environmentally sustainable business practices. one of two business groups in Brambles. airports. with a corporate history of more than 60 years. finding and keeping the right people is not easy. “Almost every Fortune 500 company is setting up (or considering setting up) operations in India that will be integral to its global value chain. and they bring the
Trends indicate a shift in the global landscape regarding talent—for both employees and organizations. for example. roads. CHEP India is in the early stages of its operations in the country and currently has about 50 employees. reuse and sharing assets many times over: “The relationship with CHEP’s customers develops into a trusted partner/adviser role. for various industries. raw materials. North America. wooden/plastic pallets and not lock up costly warehousing space. but is difficult in global markets that may act differently in terms of opportunity and salary movement: Should multinational companies treat everyone equally or deploy different strategies in different countries
4 Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool
. petrochemical and automotive industries. beverage.” notes Nayana Prabhu. Pankajakshan points out that the business model is environmentally responsible due to the element of repair. move. the India affiliate of Brambles (a global MNC headquartered in Sydney. produce. Brambles has a primary listing on the Australian Stock Exchange and a secondary listing on the London Stock Exchange. repair. operating in 45 countries across Europe. an important dimension of value delivered is that all the players in the chain need not. home improvement. successful talent management requires an effective employer brand. CHEP. With a global network of service centers.” Mr. based on volume. highly skilled doctors and trained medical personnel.7
CHEP India Pvt. Africa and Asia-Pacific. India is the 45th country of presence for Brambles and is one of the last potentially large markets to be won over (China is already in the footprint). “High-quality talent is expensive and in demand. Finding and retaining quality talent continues to be essential to business sustainability. As Vijayan Pankajakshan. leading to higher productivity. “We are in the space of returnable packing solutions.
CHEP India operates in the broad industry sector of global supply chain management and. and customers pay a rental fee for the service. in a recent SHRM report titled Indian Human Resource Management and Talent Mindset.000 customers around the world.g. saving time and hassles of managing the pallet system.000 people worldwide.India has been expanding rapidly.. transportation standards). in the space of equipment pooling solutions. Brambles. CHEP handles pallet and container supply chain logistics for customers in the consumer goods. more specifically. with $4 billion in revenue in the year ending in June 2009). decades of experience and an unmatched asset base. buy. the research infrastructure is highly attractive to international organizations. CHEP India Pvt. and that offers us many more opportunities to contribute to their success..
India’s War for Talent
India is seen as the “land of opportunity” by many multinational corporations. explains. which is the first of its kind. The unique challenges of CHEP India are two-fold: 1) to establish a business model. Vice President of Learning and Development at EXL Service in India. wooden/plastic pallets in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) industry and customized containers for the automobile industry). CHEP helps manufacturers and growers transport their products to distributors and retailers. Established in 2008.” explains Nirmalya Kumar in India Unleashed. based on the concept of pooling. Combining superior technology.”
vitality of their employer brand to India. etc. Pooling is a business model that serves manufacturers of products and end customers/consumers (modern and small retail stores).8 Whether in a recession or a growing economy. Australia. Director — Human Resources. delivers supply chain efficiencies to more than 300. Ltd. is a leading global provider of support services. We own the assets (pallets/containers). South America. employing more than 12. Yet. meat. Director of Human Resources at CHEP India.”
Vijayan Pankajakshan.g. SHRM’s report Future Insights: The top trends according to SHRM’s HR subject matter expert panels points out that “talent management continues to be a high priority and must be more efficient than before while leveraging cost awareness and monitoring demands for key positions. Ltd. and 2) to cope with and strategize the way forward in a country where there has been considerable lag in development of macro and basic infrastructure (e. The rush by multinationals to set up Indian operations and the rapid growth of Indian outsourcing companies has resulted in a war for talent. Beyond that. With India’s rich technical resource pool.
” In fact. career advancement opportunities. “As the employment market gets more competitive for the best talent. with core corporate values at its foundation. notes Mr. that’s the reason they stay with your company. Pankajakshan. the key to success in recruiting becomes how well the organization differentiates itself from others. It is important to realize that while many corporations in other
. and 5) leading change. of CHEP India. 3) business knowledge. safety and ethics—and our employees relate very closely to this message. of Fiserv India. It is not simply a recruiting tool. an important factor for productivity. and senior management acting ethically in business management decisions. employer brand initiatives include showcasing the company and employees in relevant conferences and expositions. as one of the top 50 companies of Great Places to Work in India. Mandayam. the employer brand in India has a strong value proposition. “the brand signifies quality.
countries are already well-versed in such factors.” At Quintiles India. Mandayam. Globally. In addition. “No matter the generation. of Quintiles India. both in attracting and in keeping talent.11 Research by Towers Perrin identified key drivers of attraction and retention in Indian companies in its global workforce study.”
SHRM’s recent poll of HR practitioners about HR leadership competencies sheds light on talent needed in India in HR leadership roles. but when it is genuine. for HR executives and organizational leadership in multinational corporations seeking to do business in India or those companies working to successfully expand their current marketplace with India. is representative of the other two Indian HR executives: “The employer brand must be genuine.” At Quintiles India. as seen through the employer brand lens—such as leadership competencies. with examples from their respective organizations and with an emphasis on strategies to use the strength of their employer brand for improved talent management. Indian corporations are grappling with them at an increasing rate. attain and/or retain its competitive advantage in the marketplace. The brand may encourage the employee to choose your company. participating in campus road shows. Retention of talent is also closely linked to employee engagement. skills and abilities and other qualities needed by a senior HR leader to be successful are 1) strategic thinking. Mr.” Mr. Mandayam explains. Some of the most important factors included the organization’s reputation as a good employer. The viewpoint of Mr. 2) strategic thinking.10 These trends reinforce the importance of having an effective employer brand to recruit and retain the right kind of talent needed by the corporation to establish.” employee engagement has emerged as a critical driver of business success in today’s global marketplace. which transcends compensation and general rewards. 3) business knowledge. As highlighted in a SHRM article “Leveraging Employee Engagement for Competitive Advantage: HR’s Strategic Role. ability to balance work and personal life. Being the largest CRO in India—and the only fully integrated biopharmaceutical services company
Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool 5
If effectively marketed internally and externally. the organization’s financial status. “We use the employer brand to present the value proposition to our internal talent.12 The link between the employer brand and employee engagement can be seen in viewpoints of the Indian HR executives interviewed for this article. which ultimately brings new medicines to patients. for two consecutive years (2008 and 2009). Bhutani. As noted by Mr. and winning an award. challenging work/varied work assignments. attraction and retention drivers. The broad factors related to talent in India that form the foundation of an effective employer brand are true for most global organizations and illustrate the rapid movement of the multinational corporations in India and their influence on the workplace. 2) effective communication. it is essential to thoroughly understand the factors related to talent management. in India. recommends that “employee engagement levels be measured at least once in 18 months to check how the brand is being experienced. Mandayam points out. engagement. This requires us to work with an unwavering commitment to patients. SHRM asked the three Indian HR executives about the lessons they have learned about the value proposition of the employer brand. the top five competencies for knowledge.to pay for and retain talent?” The report emphasizes that economic uncertainties fundamentally change the motivators that attract and retain employees. we have found that our employees strongly identify with the important work we do. we have seen measureable increases in our retention since first introducing our employer brand. Mr. The executives shared their focus on the employer brand. These competencies will be essential for HR leaders in India to help lead their organizations and successfully leverage their employer brands in today’s competitive marketplace. customer service and is a recognized icon in the clinical research domain across the world. 4) effective communication and 5) cross-cultural intelligence.
Sending the Right Message
To learn more about developing the employer brand in India. the poll reveals that the top five competencies for successful senior HR leaders in a global organization are 1) global intelligence/global mindset. According to this research. 4) HR knowledge.
To get its message out. network planning. as Indian organizations move into the
corporation and “ Fiservais a socially responsible to the community inbelievesit that it has responsibility to give back which operates. Mr. such as contributing company funds to support schools and hospitals in rural areas and support education in underprivileged communities. Vice President. we firmly believe in two essential principles: The client comes first. emphasizes that a brand can be tailored to create the greatest resonance with a number of different audiences and talent market sectors without compromising consistency. and people make the difference.” Over the past 25 years. the company targets certain business schools to locate students who have a curriculum in subjects related to supply chain (e. To establish a successful employer brand. As highlighted in the book Corporate Social Responsibility in India.” In CHEP India. Pankajakshan. Mr.15 The SHRM survey report 2007 Corporate
Indian CSR Initiatives for Brand Recognition
Traditionally. which has a profound positive impact on the reduction of consumption of limited natural resources and/or nonbiodegradable materials. mirrors the experience of the two
6 Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool
other HR executives.g. SHRM interviewed Indian HR leaders from eight different industry sectors about talent management initiatives. of Fiserv India. logistics. consulting and capital solutions worldwide— lends itself to being recognized as an employer of choice by potential employees. Employees have stepped forward in overwhelming numbers and are regularly contributing to the improvement of the underprivileged. Fiserv launched its new brand identity in 2009. Bhutani points out. “The employer brand should have synergies with that of the businesses.14 In a 2008 report Corporate Indian Companies: Forging New Talent Pipelines and Creative Career Pathways. The growing awareness of CSR as a socially responsible business practice can be observed in some multinational corporations operating in India. CSR has been found to increase the ability to attract and retain employees. Fiserv’s industry leadership plays an integral role in building a strong employer brand. In addition. “As Indian companies grow global […] coupled with socioeconomic and regulatory pressures […] there is a shift from corporate philanthropy to corporate social investment (CSI)” (CSI is the Indian term to describe an organization’s investment in a range of community activities). transportation. as they are our most valuable assets. Fiserv celebrates and rewards employees through quarterly and annual employee appreciation programs. the company focuses on high-visibility events. Fiserv has maintained its leadership in FinTech 100 at the top position in five of the last six years. With the changing landscape of the financial services industry.. The trend for Indian businesses to focus on CSR initiatives—both to build the brand and to stand out among other organizations—has increased in the past five to six years.
international marketplace. Of particular importance is to ensure top management knows that investing in employer branding reduces costs of hiring and also reduces rates of attrition. the employer brand has to have a core that is relevant to employees across cultures and nuanced for local conditions and sensitivities.” Mr. To find talent. commercial. from CHEP India senior managers giving guest lectures at universities to participating in cricket matches with the students. from paying for student meals to supplementing teachers’ salaries. it is imperative to integrate CSR into the company business goals. Fiserv strives to enhance the capability of employees throughout the entire employee lifecycle by competency mapping. operations management and packaging development). procurement. SHRM found that Indian organizations emphasized the importance of giving to the community. Bhutani. Mr. Author Sanjay Agarwal points out. “We ensure that our people practices provide the highest degree of employee satisfaction and work/life balance. Fiserv India
. Agarwal notes that the big corporate houses in India realize this aspect of CSR and have set up initiatives. People and Operations.000 volunteer hours for community service. training and career counseling sessions. This value is one that resonates with a certain population of Indian talent that is interested in sustainability and the environment. Fiserv is running a global campaign of donating 25. companies in India have had philanthropic and community programs. The new brand globally unifies Fiserv as a company that is proud of its rich heritage and has the potential to empower its clients. Our new brand marks significant energy. the brand value is based on sustainability. “At Fiserv.”
Manmohan Bhutani. Fiserv has been recognized for its innovation and product superiority. Such activities help to form a key network to better attract the right talent. of CHEP India. In the Indian context. A Fortune 500 company. To mark its 25th anniversary.” All of these opportunities convey the right message to the marketplace and attract the right talent. companies need to be involved in extensive public relations and marketing activities focused toward current and prospective talent.offering clinical. progressive thinking and a fresh approach to the opportunities that lie ahead.
China. data from India indicate that CSR outcomes have a strong impact on the company’s public image. Our brand is not amenable to mass advertising.Social Responsibility: United States. caution should be exercised when interpreting results with small sample sizes. Canada Canada > China Mexico > China Brazil > Australia.S. India. China. Australia. Canada U. for all seven countries.
Improved employee morale
Increased employee loyalty
Increased consumer/customer confidence
Increased brand recognition
Position as an employer of choice Increased employee retention Increased recruitment of top employees Competitive advantage Increased workforce productivity Positive financial bottom line
19% 17% 15% 15%
18% 15% 10% 8%
18% 22% 15% 16%
17% 13% 7% 6%
25% 17% 12% 14%
24% 26% 19% 14%
Brazil > Australia. is contribution to society.S.S. > China Mexico > China Brazil > China. Blank cells in the last column indicate that no statistically significant differences were found. Sample sizes and percentages are based on the total number of respondents by country who answered this question.. For example. Source: SHRM 2007 Corporate Social Responsibility Pilot Study
Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool 7
. HR professionals who indicated “not applicable. and hence we would like our product solutions to take root first and as a reflection. Australia. we do not have corporate social responsibility programs” were excluded from this analysis. we would be able to strongly position CSR activities linking to the employer
Figure 2 | Positive Outcomes of CSR Programs (by Country)
United States (n = 309)
Australia (n = 214)
India (n = 134)
Canada (n = 844)
Brazil (n = 135) 81% 68% 59% 60% 66% 59% 23% 25% 19% 26% 19%
China (n = 82)
Mexico (n = 88)
Differences Based on Country
Stronger public image
Canada > Australia Brazil > Australia U. Canada Brazil > Australia. Percentages do not total 100% due to multiple response options. data. The data from outside of the United States were based on a pilot study.. India. Canada Brazil > U. As seen in Figure 2.16 The findings of these research studies are reflected in the values of the organizations highlighted in this article. Mexico Australia > China. China. Australia. Mexico India > China Canada > China Mexico > China Brazil > China. Canada Brazil > U. Canada
Note: Data sorted in descending order by the U. “We are about 18 months into our India entry phase of the organization.S. Canada. Canada India > Canada China > U.S.S. Mexico and Brazil—A Pilot Study revealed that the top driver of corporate social responsibility programs. increase employee loyalty and position the organization as an employer of choice.
improve employee morale. India. > China. it plans to do so in the future.. China. while CHEP India does not yet use CSR as a vehicle to
highlight its employer brand.
from decision-making to implementation of projects. One example of a current internal CSR program at CHEP India is to plant tree saplings in the name of its employees to replenish this resource. with a 360-degree view of all potential target stakeholders for the employer brand.” says Mr. As Mr. as India. with their own high-profile consumer brands. Employer brands are at least as much about retention and engagement as they are about recruitment. many are beginning to introduce CSR initiatives. SME. with a seamlessness that illustrates thoughtful. systems and processes into the local environment without first understanding what the local talent will accept welcomingly and what it will resent. Quintiles India is in the early stages of initiating CSR activities on a large scale. so it is too early to draw conclusions. “Employees
Figure 3 | Key Advice and Recommendations for Building an Employer Brand in India
Every employer brand is an investment that should demonstrate a return comparable to other forms of business investment. Employees have also been a part of organizing committees at these schools. women empowerment. The focus areas of these CSR initiatives are education of the underprivileged. forges forward to make a wider mark in the world. Recently. This point is important for HR leaders in multinational corporations to keep in mind when moving operations into the Indian marketplace or merging/acquiring Indian corporations. Pankajakshan suggests. At Fiserv India. “It is important to not directly impose global/Western policies. philosophies. retain and engage good people. 2010)
In recent years. triggering events like sports day. government department and academic organization that needs to recruit. As Mr. it is critical to bring in the expertise of the employer’s workforce to successfully build and disseminate the brand.” The challenge—and importance—of effectively meshing different cultures. The employees have associated themselves with various schools in Noida and Pune. The interviewees’ final recommendation is that the view of the brand in India should match in the eyes of both the employee and the consumer. the world has witnessed the dramatic entrance and success of Indian corporations in the global marketplace. The advertising of the employer and employee brand should be as synergistic and mutually reinforcing as possible. Mr. Employer brands. charity. particularly with today’s environment of global mergers and acquisitions. and this allows them to make a difference in society and touch many lives.” His comment links to the issue referred to earlier—the complexity of mixing Eastern and Western management practices and the possible detrimental impact on the employer brand in the Indian context. representative of being environmentally responsible for the wood used to make pallets. promotion of vocational training and environmental protection. as a strategic HR tool. also came to the forefront. Mandayam notes. glamorous’ MNCs. Thus. Keep the local context in mind: recognize. Pankajakshan.” says Mr. the employer brand as a strategic HR tool will
8 Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool
should be involved in developing/ refurbishing the employer brand. accept and adapt to the local culture. In the clinical research sector in India.brand. This has encouraged the children to learn more and become responsible citizens. picnics and field trips. Arpan was involved with key projects for education of the underprivileged. corporate social responsibility is an integral part of the business culture. are for every local authority.
“Employees are involved in all stages. Arpan. Retain the core of the brand (if it is an MNC) and contextualize development. with the likelihood of favorable outcomes for “Brand India” in the domestic and international markets. Bhutani. is driven by employees organized in volunteer taskforces. The social service wing.
Source: Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool (SHRM. intentional and strategic communication to the workforce as well as external stakeholders and the marketplace at large. Interaction with these schools includes regular classes and tutorial sessions. The employer brand should incorporate sensitivities of employees in foreign countries (if the Indian company has overseas operations). Offer a strong value proposition to talent in India. as companies become better established in the marketplace.” Additionally. Inc. This sense of achievement is a great learning experience and a matter of pride for our employees. With the continued influx of multinational corporations in India—as well as Indian corporations expanding beyond their own borders—the opportunities for India to contribute to the world economy have significantly increased.
Recommendations From Indian HR Executives
The three Indian HR executives interviewed by SHRM were asked for their most salient advice about building an employer brand in India (see Figure 3). Bhutani emphasized that “the employer brand is not just for the ‘big.
Agarwal. com. In P. shrm. (2004). (2009). Society for Human Resource Management. S.
Society for Human Resource Management. Future insights: The top trends according to SHRM’s HR subject matter expert panels. J.take on greater importance in Indian organizations—in how it is developed. K.aspx. India unleashed.towersperrin.). 2009 from www. Kumar. Business Strategy Review. Budhwar and J. 113–139). The changing face of people management in India (pp.). (2008). Corporate social responsibility in India. researchandmarkets. Strategic Human Resource Management India Pvt. London: Routledge. Alexandria. profits and sustainability for today and into the future.org/research. The changing face of people management in India (pp. S. S.RecruitandRetainTalent. I. Retrieved from www. Managing human resources in AsiaPacific (pp. Australia. Retrieved October 1. Mexico and Brazil—A pilot study. S. 2007 corporate social responsibility: United States. 2009. Budhwar. Society for Human Resource Management. P. & Budhwar. (2010).com/reportinfo. N. Budhwar (Ed. N.shrm. India: Response. 4–15. VA: Society for Human Resource Management. Business Strategy Review. Alexandria.
For additional reading on human resources in India. Corporate Indian Companies: Forging New Talent Pipelines and Creative Career Pathways India: Building Sustainable Leadership Competency Indian Human Resource Management and Talent Mindset Perspectives on Women in Management in India
Employer Brand in India: A Strategic HR Tool 9
. India’s global powerhouses: How they are taking on the world. Saini. S. Budhwar & J. from www.. India unleashed. Leveraging employee engagement for competitive advantage: HR’s strategic role. Bhatnagar (Eds. 20 (1). VA: Author. Indian human resource management and talent mindset. HRM in India. (2008). Alexandria. Canada.org/Research/Articles/Pages/default.shrm. 1. N. Lockwood. (2009). SHRM Poll: HR leadership competencies. (2007). Ltd.. 20 (1). In P. 4–15. (2009). Emerging HRM systems in foreign firms operating in India. (2008. In P. (2009). Björkman. S. The employer brand: A strategic tool to attract. Bhatnagar. London: Routledge. Clinical research outsourcing and India. V. S. R. communicated. June 14). (2009). Retrieved from www. go to www. asp?report_id=339460.. Corporate Indian companies: Forging new talent pipelines and creative career pathways. & Singh. Retrieved October 15. Talent management strategies in India. Retrieved from www. D.shrm. recruit and retain talent. Towers Perrin. 2007-2008 Towers Perrin global workforce study. N. (2007. P. April-June). India. Kumar. Boston: Harvard Business Press.aspx. November). March). Bhatnager (Eds. (2009). 180–206). (2008. 115-134). VA: Author. Society for Human Resource Management. New York: Routledge. Society for Human Resource Management.aspx. marketed and ultimately yields growth. China. SHRM Research Quarterly. ResearchandMarkets.org /Research/Articles/Articles/Pages /TheEmployerBrand-AStrategicTooltoAt tract. (2006.).org /Research/Articles/Articles/Pages /Mgmtandtalentmindset. (2009).
Kumar. New Delhi.
Director of Human Resources. recording or otherwise. Manager.PROJECT TEAM Project leader: Project contributors: Nancy R.A.
Copy editing: Design: External reviewer:
USA Society for Human Resource Management 1800 Duke Street Alexandria. stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in whole or in part.org. Disclaimer This report is published by the Society for Human Resource Management. and providing networking opportunities within the global and Indian HR communities. 7th Floor Raheja Towers Plot C. All rights reserved. ISBN: 978-1-586-44192-0
© 2010 Society for Human Resource Management. Lockwood. photocopying. CHEP India Pvt. SPHR. Director. SPHR.. Tower C Raycom Info Tech Park No. Quintiles India Vijayan Pankajakshan. M. Founded in 1948. G Block Bandra Kurla Complex. USA. (“SHRMI”) serves the needs of HR professionals by facilitating exchange of knowledge resources and practices.000 members in over 140 countries. GPHR. Autodesk.62.D. Fiserv India Mukund Mandayam.. Ph.shrm. Alexandria. Visit SHRM Online at www. Representing more than 250. SHRM Research Shawn Fegley. trademark. Manufacturing Division. Reference to any specific commercial product. mechanical. electronic. and member of the SHRM Global Special Expertise Panel Many thanks to the Indian HR professionals and their organizations for their time and generous contributions to this article: Manmohan Bhutani. Survey Research Analyst. Human Resources. Ltd. People and Operations. SHRM Research Steve Williams. service mark.2. Kexueyuan South Road Zhongguancun. 100190 China Tel: +86-10-59822093 / 59822146 Fax: +86-10-59822588
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest association devoted to human resource management. recommendation or favoring by SHRM.org
India SHRM India 702. Haidian District Beijing.
ABOUT SHRM INDIA
Strategic Human Resource Management India Pvt. manufacturer or otherwise does not constitute or imply endorsement. Copy Editor Terry Biddle. Vice President.org E-mail: shrm@shrm. VA 22314. HR Content Program. Graphic Designer Aliza Dart-Scott. Director. SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China and India. enabling professional development. Bandra (E) Mumbai 400051 Maharashtra India Tel: +91-22-42472000 Fax: +91-22-42472010
China Beijing Representative Office SHRM Corporation 5/F. The Society for Human Resource Management cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions or any liability resulting from the use or misuse of any such information. process or service by trade name. SPHR. 1800 Duke Street. in any form or by any means. the Society serves the needs of HR professionals and advances the interests of the HR profession.shrm. without the prior written permission of the Society for Human Resource Management. Director – Human Resources. This publication may not be reproduced. South Block. SHRM Research Katya Scanlan. VA 22314 Phone: (800) 283-7476 www. All content is for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as a guaranteed outcome.