The battle for talent

We talked about ’’the battle for talent’’ with Dominika Biesok – HR Business Partner in Cyclad International

Cyclad: Why did you start getting interest in the HR?

DB: I started my adventure with Human Relations about 10 years ago during my Romance studies. Firstly, I worked as a Background Screening Analyst on the francophone market, later as a recruiter on the Polish and French markets. I have always been interested in issues related to the psychology of business and personal relationships, therefore I decided to develop myself in this direction. Currently, as HR Business Partner in Cyclad International, I am responsible for developing the HR strategy in the internal structures of Cyclad worldwide.

Cyclad: How would you define the place of HR departments in the contemporary companies?

DB: The role of HR in the organization has undergone transformation for several years, particularly in the IT industry. Today, we are dealing with the employee’s market which determines the strategies of HR. The Millennials are a new generation entering the labour market. They have completely different requirements and ambitions than the previous Generation X. The HR departments have a very difficult task to acquire the best employees.

Cyclad: What are the requirements of the Millennials?

DB: There are many differences concerning the perception of the workplace by the Millennials in comparison with previous generations. Research shows that a large part of the Millennials expects flexible working hours in order to combine work with their private life. Almost all of them maintain the optimal balance between work and career. They appreciate the proper atmosphere at work, partnerships with employers and career opportunities more than remuneration. They also expect that the employer will support their development. The IT/ITC industry, which Cyclad operates, is accustomed to the fact that it has to follow new trends and promote new technologies, otherwise it will go out of business. It is the same situation with employees. If we are not an attractive employer we will lose the opportunity to invite the best people from the labour market to our team.

Cyclad: What is the solution?

DB: The position of Cyclad is very interesting. More than 250 people, in addition to internal employees, work for our clients from around the world. They work as consultants on the basis of the Knowledge process outsourcing. The vast majority of our clients are large corporations which have developed HR departments. Members of the internal Cyclad’s team have an excellent knowledge how the atmosphere and working conditions are in the most major IT companies. That is why we can compare Cyclad to the big players in the market. The HR strategy in Cyclad is based on the Talent Acquisition principle – we invest in relationship, development and good atmosphere.

Cyclad: What does ‘’Talent Acquisition’’ mean?

HR department faces a great challenge which is the Talent Acquisition. One can say that there are series of activities, some kind of combination of the various elements of the HR system aiming at attracting, selecting, retaining the best and the most valuable employees in the company. It is the ‘’battle for talent’’. It takes several months to obtain an adequate employee in the IT industry, later on there are trainings which also last a couple of months. After this time, the loss of the employee would be painful for the company. The HR strategy based on Talent Acquisition gives us a kind of security. The above mentioned ‘’battle for talent’’ also applies to our consultants. Despite the fact that consultants work for our particular clients they are still our employees. We want our workers to feel comfortable in their workplace. We choose consultants who not only have the appropriate competences but who also match to the organizational culture of our clients. Even the best specialist does not get a chance to prove himself when he does not feel a part of the company. At the recruitment stage, we pay attention to the candidate’s soft skills and pass the basic information about the organizational culture of the client.

Cyclad: Does it mean that you support your clients in talent managing?

DB: During the recruitment process, we try to select and offer our client a candidate who is a good specialist and a match to the organizational culture of the company at the same time. Our recruiters play a crucial role in the whole process. They build partnerships with the candidate, not only asses his competences but they advise him, talk about expectations and assist throughout the recruitment process. We are in touch with our consultants also after the recruitment process. Each of our clients has his own coordinator. This person is on call for both the client and the consultant in order to monitor and support development issues, effectiveness and commitment of our workers. Generally we may say that we are a kind of an agent for our consultants. If required, we can help our client and consultant in order to take satisfaction from the cooperation. Of course, the official meetings are not everything, we also have time to relax after work during informal events. They are also a part of our HR strategy. As you can notice, we participate in management for talents from acquisition and command the best candidates to taking care of their development and commitment to work.

Cyclad: In your opinion, how will future managing of HR function in companies?

DB: The HR departments have to be dynamic and prepared for permanent changes because the process of talent management will evolve. As a general rule, if companies want to keep the best team members and build their engagement, they will have to adopt the style and work organization to the employees’ expectations. We cannot forget about such elements as flexible working hours, real impact on projects and good atmosphere. Previously, we talked about the Millennials and I think that the appropriate development of leaders who will be able to adopt their management style to the expectations of the Generation Y is very important. Changes will also occur in the form of the recruitment process. The virtual recruitment interviews or recruitment methods based on rivalry are not surprising nowadays. There are a lot of challenges, however, the energy of well-selected teams has such great potential. I think that it is worth to ‘’battle for talents’’.