Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Hiring relatives… the downside for the HR

When it comes to hiring relatives, there are a lot of advantages e.g. you don’t need to do extensive background and security checks, you get a person who already knows about your company and is mentally ready to accept the challenge. These people also get trained quickly because they are getting the best training from their relative who has already spent 2-3 or more years in that job.

But there are certain arguments which suggest that hiring relatives is not a good option:

1. People tend to cover the mistakes made by their relatives during the job. So you might see a situation where the deficiencies in resources are exposed when his/her relative go on a long leave.

2. If one resource is under performing then you are not in a position to launch the firing orders.

3. If there is an off the job disagreement between the relatives then that will adversely affect their on job relationships.

4. Often when a relative is leaving the company he/she has the magical influence to take the other resource with him/her.

So the option is yours!

Monday, October 29, 2007

“IT” is all about empowerment for SME

The word IT can be defined as "the study, design, development, implementation, support or management of computer-based information systems, particularly software applications and computer hardware (ITAA)” and now days the word IT is being replaced with ICT (Information and Communication Technology).

Whenever you heard these words you start thinking high tech people with lots of gadgets up their sleeves. In a typical SME (small and medium enterprise) environment these people are untouchable. They have the financial backing even in tough economic situations and total management support. They always suggest state of the art software and hardware which in their perspective will improve the business processes and will add value towards higher customer satisfaction.

The downside is that other “non IT” staff will start resisting any implementation suggested by the IT department. Even If does add some value they will start thinking that it’s not in their best of interest, and add the fear of loosing your job to a machine, it certainly blocks the improvements which can come due to presence of a proper information system.

How can we avoid this… simple! Empower your employee.

How… well this is a bit tricky question and will depend from situation to situation. In some SME you don’t even need a full fledge information system if we just train the staff to start “using” the applications they are already working with. Just to quote a personal example, in my company (dealing with accounting) there is extensive use of Microsoft Excel and the main stream resources that we have are all accountants and they use Microsoft Excel more than 60-70% of the time.

Now if we propose a new accounting system with all the management backing they will still revert back to Microsoft Excel in one way or the other. The best option here is to train the resources how to effectively use Microsoft Excel. One can really add value to this training by starting with Lean thinking and then training resources in MS Excel and asking them to apply and eliminate any waste which they see in their current workings.

I have seen companies having high tech applications but there staff still prefer to use the simple spread sheet application which they learnt 5 years back.