Different industries call for different skills. Many options present themselves when choosing HR as a career choice – IT, Manufacturing, E-commerce, to name a few. So how do/should HR specialists opt for a specific industry?
"It depends upon where they (as HRs) are in their self-awareness journey," said Kyra Sutton. "Those that are more self-aware might want to work in industry-specific or company-specific roles."
The role of HR is becoming more accustomed to modernization, as the trend toward a digital workplace is growing in India. "Technology will play a huge role in managing the distributed workforces in the coming times” states India Today. “Companies must emphasise adapting advanced HR technologies,” it further adds, “leverage (HR tech) to their advantage, strengthen workforce abilities, ensure data security, and improve employee experiences.”
With the advancement of HR technology, the importance of HCM in India is gaining attention. Some of the great HR experts in India's HR community, across varied sectors, have well-defined leadership, talent management, employee retention, and other modern essentials of the ideal Human Capital role.
Top influential HR experts in India across different industries
HR in Automotive Industry
Hiring for the automotive industry needs to bridge the talent gap by sourcing fresh talent from campuses. Talent sourcing has, for over a decade, been one of the most daunting challenges for the HR experts in India.
Capt. Pranav Prasoon Thakur
Capt. Pranav Prasoon Thakur is heading the HR Department of Renault India. An Ex-Indian Army Officer, Capt. Pranav Prasoon Thakur possesses notable experience in managing the vast spectrum of Leadership & Human Resource Management, Talent Management, Talent Development, Change Management and Operations Management. With over 17 years of extended experience in HRM, Capt. Pranav Prasoon Thakur is also an author of the novels, ‘Those Unknown’ & 'Fallen Few', well-appreciated by the Top Army Brasses.
Roy Joseph is the VP of HR & Services in MRF, India’s leading trye manufacturing company. As the Head of HR with multi-faceted experience in the industry, Mr. Joseph specialists in the entire gamut of HR activities in the company, with special focus on building systems and practices that align well with the future of work and workplace. Other areas of focus include employee productivity, organisational culture & development, and L&D.
Also read peopleHum's publication on the HR leaders of 2021.
HR in E-commerce industry
The role of top Human Resources leaders in India in the e-commerce sector is best described in terms of agility, quirkiness and thinking out of the box when it comes to hiring, retention and rewards and recognition policies.
As the Head of HR, Nanda Kapoor manages the core HR functions along with candidate selection, final negotiation, employee management, and designing the primary HR policies at Flipkart. While the biggest challenge for E-commerce is having a readily employable workforce, she takes care of employing people who are the closest fit, training new employees conducive to the new environment.
Keeping in mind the behavioural patterns of the young, aspirational, socially active and highly opinionated workforce today, she is a seasonal expert in handling grievances and implementing disciplinary procedure, in the view of constantly motivating and retaining employees for a longer period.
HR in software & IT industry
In the IT industry, like in any other knowledge industry, the HR problems are identical. Collaboration culture is quite beneficial in such a setting. This conundrum expands the duty of top HR leaders in India beyond hiring. More than their counterparts in other industries, HR leaders must address the cultural, career pathing, and benefits components of people management.
Divya Sathyan is a Director of HR, APAC, at Genesys, a computer software company specialised in customer experience. With more than 20 years of experience in Human Resources, she is fulfilling the role of strategic HR business partner, and dynamic HR expert in India. Divya Sathyan’s core skills focuses on building shared value initiatives with their people, and transforming organisations into Great Places to Work.
HR in Manufacturing or Commercial Industry
The ever-changing manufacturing industry reveals that finding, managing, nurturing talent, and retaining high-performing employees has emerged as the single most important challenge among the top HR professionals in India. With the manufacturing industry's constant growth, HR's function poses many challenges to set up a workforce for the future of work.
Niharika Mohan is the Chief Human Resource Officer at Luminous Power Technologies. Over the past few years, Niharika has worked across multiple industries and has spent much of her career in the variety of business transformation roles, including diverse HR practices in today's shifting business climate, her experience as the Head of HR is widely focused on the true strategic areas of HR like Organizational Design and Restructuring, M&A Integration, Compensation & Benefits, Change Management, Talent Management, and Diversity & Inclusion
HR in Chemical industry
With the dynamic nature of the chemical industry, ensuring a positive work environment is no longer a choice but an overarching imperative for companies that wish to thrive and succeed in the business. Traditionally, the chemical industry has focused on senior management level talent acquisition and retention for the expertise HR experts in India hold in this domain.
Sandeep G is the President & CHRO at DCM Shriram Ltd, with an experience spanning 29 years in Indian and multinational companies. A lot of his experience has been in transformational roles, driving growth and leading HR change agenda, setting up of People Strategy for growth and building Organization and People DNA for business success. During some international stints, he was involved in developing HR strategy and Business Reorganisation, including Mergers & Acquisitions, Learning and Development, and Talent Management at the global HR level.
HR in Real Estate
Because of so many specific aspects, real estate companies often face the HR system malfunction, which causes them to lose money and valuable talent. It’s no secret that the real estate industry has relatively high employee turnover rate. Attracting and retaining top talent is among the common HR problems in the real estate industry.
Maria Rajesh is the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) at Embassy Group. As CHRO, Maria is a part of the Leadership team and is core to the People HR Initiatives across the diversified businesses of the Group. With a phenomenal experience in the Real Estate industry, she also actively supports non-profit organizations like the World Vision India. Little Sisters of the Poor and the Lovedale Foundation. Starting since 2006, Maria Rajesh has been responsible for setting up the Human Resources function, development of HR policies, creation of organizational programs and processes that achieve business objectives at Embassy Group.
HR in Online Travel
Yuvaraj Srivastava is the Group CHRO, leading as the Head of HR at MakeMyTrip. He is a seasonal HR leader with an expertise in vast spectrum of industries, ranging from Manufacturing, Supply chain, hospitality, Sales, and Technology. With an experience of over last 23 years, this top HR professionals in India has been the key driver behind creating some end-to-end HR strategies and bringing forth its execution.
HR in Consulting industry
The importance of human resources management consulting business is indisputable. While the HR systems and tools in consulting firms are shifting from the traditional management prosses, HR as a strategic partner will be responsible for contributing to the organisational growth.
A former CHRO of the The Hitget Gears, Aniruddha Singh is currently on a mission to "unleash the brain power of organisations" and "create future-ready organisations that generate intellectual capital," He is a Managing Partner at Future Lista Consulting Partners. With strong management skills in global and Indian enterprises' human difficulties. Anniruddha is an accomplished company leader with over 24 years of experience, focused on improving organisational performance to increase top-line and bottom-line impact.
Pallavi Tyagi is an EVP and CHRO India at Capgemini. With over 20 years of experience in HR, she has a diverse experience from industries like IT to consumer durables to manufacturing (B2B) Specialised in comprehensive areas of HR: Strategy, TA, HR Operations, C&B, Business Partnering, Talent Management & Industrial relations, diversity & inclusion & employee engagement. She has worked cross-geographies: India, US, Eastern Europe, Middle East, Africa, India & Asia Pacific including China, ANZ, South East Asia, Japan, Korea & South Asia.
Across every industry, an aspect that stays common over the others is the increasingly growing demand for HR tech. Data analytics, machine learning, AI, advanced automation, and other technological advancements are used in this wave of next-gen HR tech to improve existing tools and create solutions that have the potential to revolutionise talent management consulting.
Forward-thinking enterprises and the top HR experts in India have already experienced digital transformation to take advantage of cloud computing. As a result, obtaining and adopting next-generation HR technology appears to be a natural next step for many. However, before deciding to invest in new HR technology, it's critical to get a full picture of an HR software, and it's functionality.