Delhi School of Business, part of the Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies, an AICTE recognized institution offering a Post Graduate Diploma Course in Management organized its second HR Conclave, at its campus auditorium, in Pitampura Outer Ring Road, on Saturday 15th November. The topic – Perspectives and Challenges in HR – A Strategic View drew wide interest from business executives, academicians and students by their extensive presence throughout the day.
The Conclave was structured in four sessions. The first was the keynote address by Mr. Keval Handa, Ex Managing Director of Pfizer which followed the Welcome Address by Dr. IM Pandey, Director General and was followed by the address of Dr. S.C Vats, Chairman. In their addresses Dr. Pandey and Dr. Vats emphasized the purpose of the Conference and what DSB and VIPS represent, notably to provide the students with an exposure to the thought leaders in the field and simultaneously provide opportunities for deliberation amongst business leaders, academics and other stake-holders in the field thereby facilitating the strive towards attaining the perfection inherent in man through education and debate.
With this backdrop the stage was set for a most energizing address by Mr. Handa. He painted the divergent scenarios of HR in different companies whether they were players in the domestic or global context and emphasized that in a technology and digitally enabled world the embracing of technology centered HR processes are not a substitute for the “human touch” and face to face interactions. Hence process sophistication and content mastery while necessary has to accompany the knowing, feeling and conversing role of HR and then only would it be Human Relations and do away with the objectification of people as just a “resource”.
The subsequent technical sessions, had three panel speakers each and a moderator. The first of these covered the topic from the context of Indian Organizations. The second examined from the perspective of organizations with a global context and the third from the context of HR Consultants and academics.
The first technical session was moderated by Prof Neharika Vohra of IIM Ahmedabad and had Mr. ML Chakraborty, Dy. Executive Director, Dalmia Bharat Ltd. Ms. Neelam Dhaka, AGM, JCB Ltd and Mr. Pradyumna Pandey, Chief Gen Manager as panel speakers. The need for Indian organizations to bring in state of art global practices as a strategic tool for HR was pointed out by the speakers along with developing an understanding that while output of HR processes are important integration of the underlying feelings is critical for HR to play a strategic role taking into account the cultural milieu.
The second technical session was moderated by Prof Sunil Maheshwari of IIM Ahmedabad and had Mr. Abhay Kapoor, AVP, Escorts, Mr. Anmol Singh Garewal , Divisional Employee Relations Head, ITC Ltd and Mr. Arghya Sen Director HR , Mfg. Businesses of GE. The task of HR Managers in terms of their criticality to business according to the speakers was a settled issue. It was for HR Managers to comprehend that they were business managers with an expertise in HR. Hence the need for consistent process execution with output predictability was the touch stone for performing a strategic role in any function including HR. However skill deficiencies that have developed in HR through an acute shortage of HR talent with manufacturing experience need to be addressed by HR professionals moving from paper pushing in offices to engaging face to face with employees in plants. Organization strategic contexts don’t get developed for corporate entrants and mid-level executives in the detached atmosphere of the corporate offices but in the dust and grime of the field and manufacturing plants.
The third technical session was moderated by Prof Devi Saini of MDI Gurgaon and had Ms. Nalina Suresh, EVP DHR International, Mr. Jagat Rathore, Managing Partner, Wisnes Consulting and Prof Ashok Bhattacharya of DSB . The differentials from a culture and OD perspective between organizations on geospecificity was progressively disappearing but the need to hold on to a distinguishing feature for the organization was becoming increasingly critical. At the same time while focus on technical toolkits and expertise were necessary the sufficiency condition for HR to play a strategic role rested on the ability of HR leadership and functionaries to act as the referee in the values game of the organization .
The Vote of thanks to all involved was given by Prof Rattan Sharma , to end a day of significant , enriching and a value adding day for all participants especially the students who listened to every word with rapt attention.
Inaugural Session: Part 1