Tag Archives: Business

Background verification companies on the prowl

HYDERABAD: Are you on a job hunt? If you thought that you can quote a fake project or can create a false resume, chances are that you would be caught red-handed sooner than you thought.

With the number of candidates giving wrong information in their applications rising, recruiters are now employing the services of specialised companies for background verification of the applicants. More than two dozen such companies are operating in Hyderabad.

“We have found that almost four out of 10 applicants give some or other form of inaccuracies in their resumes,” V. Sridhar, associate vice-president, operations, at a background verification company, Crederity, said.

When a professional changes his job, he usually tries to negotiate better terms and salary from his new employer. For this reason most people try to exaggerate their salary, duration of their work, responsibility they held and sometimes even their education. “To check these practices most major companies, including MNCs, are now banking up on our services to verify the authenticity of these claims,” he explained.

Background verification takes 15 to 20 days to finish and can cover a range of issues from employment verification, reference checks to even claims of overseas work experience, he said.

Challenging task

But how can a firm verify the claims of a person with a diverse experience? Mr. Sridhar says that it’s a challenge even for the firm. “While it is easy to check employment details of a person, dealing with government agencies like universities and police is a time consuming process,” he said.

Recruiters too claim that employing specialised firms to get a through verification of a candidate has become a necessity these days.

“To get better positions candidates are now using sophisticated methods to hoodwink the companies. Gone are the days when a candidate would just create a false certificate or a project report. There were few instances where some candidates even created fake bank statements and employment certificates, which can amount to criminal conspiracy,” a senior human resource (HR) manager working in an MNC observed.

With candidates using better tactics employing professional verification companies is a better option, he added.

This article was published in The Hindu on June 20, 2012

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To buy or not to buy: dilemma faced by real estate consumers

HYDERABAD: The demography of India is tilting favourably towards youth and with each passing year scores of young professionals are entering the job market. With hefty pay packages and ‘stars’ in their eyes, a sizeable chunk of these youngsters are indeed aiming for better positions and are poised for brighter careers.

But while the changing economy and the associated ‘perks’ are changing the lifestyles of the people; one quintessential Indian trait still lingers on. The desire to own a house. The increase in the well paid workforce is indeed providing a perennial demand to the real estate sector.

Name it anything, a place to settle in, a way of reducing expenditure or a simple investment opportunity, there are many incentives for owning a house. But while most people have a strong desire to own their abode, they, nevertheless, are deterred by many daunting obstacles.

And the first one of the lot is to take the very decision of buying a house. “We would like to buy a house but the very fact that we have to take a decision right way scares us. There are few variables that we have to factor in before taking this plunge,” Satish Kumar and Veena Rani, a couple working in IT industry, says. The dilemma that this couple face is that there is a possibility for them to move out of the country on a three-year assignment. “We have few choices here. We can buy a house now and give it on rent or come back to the country with better savings and buy a better house in a gated community,” Satish mulls. “And then there is the question of whether we will settle in this city. If we are not settling in this city, we will be struck with an investment that we cannot look after,” he adds.

While taking the plunge is a hard step for consumers, builders too advise that the decision of buying a house should be taken after careful deliberations. “If a person can afford to buy a home within his salary he should not have a problem in buying a home. Investing in real estate indeed makes for a sound economic judgement. But if a person has to take a loan to buy a house, he has to be careful before taking the plunge,” Janardhan Reddy, a builder observes. To help a person in taking the decision, Reddy gives a checklist. “A person has to decide as to whether he is buying a house or flat to settle in it or is he taking it as an investment. If he is taking it for settling down, then the distance from work place, connectivity and civic amenities available in the area play a major role in taking the decision. Typically such people would look for a house in the core areas of the city or those near their work place,” he says. But if a person is looking at buying the house only for investment purpose, he can go a little easy on these parameters. This, he explains, is because over a period of time any area in a city is bound to develop. “The real estate rates are bound to go up and by the time a person decides to sell his property, the area would have developed sufficiently and would invariably fetch him a good bargain,” he said.

The article was published in Property Plus supplement of The Hindu on May 12, 2012.

Social media throws up many job opportunities

Hyderabad: With social media gaining steady popularity, the traditional methods employed by the recruiters to identify a suitable candidate are increasingly becoming obsolete. Recruiters are now looking towards social platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to spot the talent. And this necessitates candidates to have a better online presence to corner the desired job.

Shantanu Ghosh, an authority on social media and its implications for business practices agrees. Contrary to the popular perception that social media is not a credible platform for recruiters to scout for the talent, Prof. Ghosh argues that the very basis of social media stands on the credibility of a person and aspirants should maintain a ‘credible’ online profile.

“Online acquaintances and relationships are very fragile and anyone can leave a network without prior information. Only credibility and resourcefulness can hold one’s reputation and ensure a better following in the social media,” explains Prof. Ghosh, who was a business development head in Singapore for a leading multi-national.

In social media sites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter a recruiter can easily follow a person’s activity and hence can understand his personality. Because of this it becomes easy for a recruiter to zero in on a preferred candidate.

But Prof. Ghosh cautions that online search for a job may not be that easy for a fresher. “Because of lack of proper awareness, college students and fresh graduates are failing to harness the power of social media in promoting their careers and these youngsters are limiting their social media presence for personal reasons,” he said. HR professionals are relying on social media for spotting a candidate for middle and senior level positions instead, he said.

But while there is much ado about the rise of social media and its implications, will these strategies be successful in India? “LinkedIn has become a de-facto tool for hiring a senior level professional and sooner than later the job portals will loose their sheen. For entry level jobs, companies prefer posting the job vacancies on Facebook as younger generation is active on that platform,” agreed a HR professional of a leading company.

While HR professionals are looking into social media profiles to track a prospective candidate, they also have evolved the pattern of this evaluation. “While finalising a candidate, companies are preferring a professional who is already doing well in his present job and is active on social media,” A.K. Menon CEO of Options Executive Search, explained.

Terming these professionals as ‘Passive Job Seekers’, Mr. Menon says that companies are not inclined to select a candidate who creates a online profile in search of a job. “One has to maintain a continuous presence on social media and build credibility over time,” he opined.

This article was published in The Hindu on April 30, 2012

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