We caught up with Sarabjeet Singh Gill, Associate Manager HR – Talent Management, at GS Lab. With a decade of experience in HR, Sarabjeet shared with us his experiences and thoughts about his journey, and the HR domain.
- How did you get interested in HR and Management? Please tell us about your academic and professional background, and the responsibilities you’ve taken up?
I have done my Bachelors in computers (BCA) and MBA (HR) from SIMS, Pune. I got interested in Human Resource during my campus placement days. When I first saw HRs of various companies visiting our college campus, I was impressed the way they dress up, communicate and represent an organization. The travel part for campus placements and the authority to offer employment increased my excitement further. Now when I look back, I feel I was juvenile to be considering these as factors to join Human Resources.
I started my career with Infosys as an HRBP, and have worked with companies like Cross Country Infotech which was more of a startup in India. Then Calsoft, which was a mid-sized company. Currently I am associated with Great Software Lab as Associate Manager HR in Talent Management team. I have worked as an architect (for people, processes, and systems) on complex business initiatives and achieved exceptional results. I have a passion for optimizing human capital, organizational change, shaping culture, enabling business results in fast paced and high performance driven work environment.
My areas of expertise include Business Partner HR, HR Transformation, Talent Management, Performance Management, People Analytics, Employee engagement and HR Systems.
- As an HR professional, you’ve been working with diverse employees on a daily basis. What role does technology play in the HR industry?
With millennials making up more than half of the current workforce — and predicted to make up 75 percent by 2020 (in one of the Deloitte report) — HR is going to have to embrace and build on technological advancements to meet both employee expectations and business requirements. It’s changing the way HR operates and we should unlearn to relearn the new way of handling the diverse workforce. Use technology to its best and take it as a helping hand to reach out to employees in an efficient manner.
- What are some of the companies and workplaces you admire for their employee engagement and organisational culture?
I admire any organization which believes in investing in people to grow their business, instead of only investing in the business to grow. As people champions / leaders we need to ensure that the organization takes a genuine and conscious effort on improving the company culture using the right tools and processes of real engagement. Once you practice this, you can be rest assured that you are working towards making your company a “Great Place to Work”. I will say I was fortunate enough to work for companies like Great Software Lab who believed in the same philosophy.
- You’ve had a career spanning more than a decade. What are some of your most memorable moments?
One of my most memorable moments was working with Richard Lobo (Current EVP and Head HR, Infosys) and Soma Sundaresh (Ex Operation Head, Infosys) when I was just a fresh graduate. I was asked to work on a project at an organizational level which was related to trend analysis in Leave and Attendance to support HRBPs across Infosys. This project was an intervention which we did to change the working hours policy. There are quite many interesting things that I did later in my career. However, I find this one very rewarding as a learning experience.
- Can you share with our readers some of the best practices that can be used by HR professionals across different organizations?
A. Be Digital HR – Digital HR is a new skill set for people advisors. So, go for it and use technology to connect with your employees.
B. Gamification is the need for today’s world. This increases the efficiency and engagement of your employees as they love to be involved wherever there is some end goal to be achieved.
C. HR Analytics is the key area to learn as this will help you understand where you are heading and what interventions you need to do to improve your existing initiatives and processes. This also helps you to calculate your ROI for more of the intangible things in HR.
- A friendly career advice for an aspiring HR Management professional pursuing a management degree?
Working in HR can sometimes be hard – but it can also be immensely rewarding. Day in, day out, you can be juggling a whole range of spinning plates, constantly trying to make sure one doesn’t drop. Whilst at the same time, doing your best to support your company’s biggest asset – their people. So, come to HR field only if you love real life challenges and can manage multiple stakeholders.
- What aspects of your role do you enjoy the most?
I learn something new almost every day related to HR. It sounds cliché I know — but it’s so true. In short It’s never a dull day for me which makes my job very interesting.
- Your favourite movie?
The Karate Kid
- Beaches or mountains?
Beaches as I love seeing things in a flat way to have the holistic view but I will miss mountains and will go for it whenever required. 🙂
- Your hobbies and interests?
I love technology, networking and reading amazing stuff done by people in this world. I read a lot about technology changes happening in the industry worldwide. I attend most of the HR conferences happening in Pune and Mumbai to connect with others and see how they are doing w.r.t. people management practices in their organizations.
- If not an HR professional, you would have become?
I would have been an engineer which I am actually by degree and from heart. It’s a bit of the science geek in me which always kicks me to come up with innovative ideas on using technology in HR.