Assistant Manager HR, i2c inc/Innovative Private Limited, Ms. Shama Saghir, Identifies the Key to the Door of Success!

spot-light-shama-saghirQ.1. What makes your company an attractive employer for the job seekers?

Ms. Shama Saghir: It is heartening to know that despite the global economic crisis which has squeezed the life out of many companies, including the IT sector in Pakistan, i2c Inc continues to grow. We are experiencing significant growth in business and employment opportunities and are always on the lookout for talented people to join our team.

We offer a challenging and rewarding career to individuals who have a passion to excel and can deliver in a fast-paced, team-based environment. Our management culture fosters open communication and flow of ideas throughout all levels of the organization. The proven strength and speed of our team-based culture contributes directly to the success and agility of i2c.

The diversity, talent and expertise of our employees drive success in all areas of our business, and keep us on the cutting edge of opportunity. And that, in my opinion, makes us a very attractive destination for both fresh as well as experienced job seekers.

Q.2. What is your policy on work-life balance and how do you achieve this balance yourself?

Ms. Shama Saghir: Work is an end in itself, but for a fulfilling life, one should also be able to have time for their non-professional and leisure activities. Overburdened and overworked employees are not the best performers. We try to create very supportive work environment for our employees and try to resolve employee issues in a way that enables them to create a healthy work-life balance as well as fulfill their worth to the company.

We can also boast of very generous employee benefit programs that make us stand out from other players in the market. Some of the attractive features of our employee-oriented policies include:

• Child education support
• Family health care
• Two off days in a week
• Compensation leaves
• Annual paid leaves
• Annual events to bring together employees and their families

To achieve work-life balance, I think, you have to learn time management and set priorities in your life. If you know your priorities and manage your time well, you should be able to strike this balance.

Q.3. Do you believe that Pakistani Universities are creating an effective talent pool, and what is your Company’s strategy to attract the best talent in Pakistan?

Ms. Shama Saghir: I think that the Pakistani universities need to craft their curricula and courses to meet the demands of not only the present but also the future markets. This will take more than churning out the graduates who are content with merely trying to follow and mimic the best industry practices they read about in books.

The institutions of higher education should understand the higher priorities of producing the leaders and workers of this information age. This requires development of creative minds with keen analytical skills. The universities should also invest more time and effort to groom the overall personalities of their graduates to make them more effective in the workplace and in life at large.

Finding the best person for the job is always a challenge. We have been recruiting a number of people through online portals and employee referrals. We have also been recruiting directly from the universities, and intend to pursue this avenue more vigorously in the next quarter by broadening our search for fresh talent to a number of top schools in the country.

Q.4. Due to rough economic situation and soaring price rise, how does your company deal with keeping itself cost-effective and attractive for job seekers?

Ms. Shama Saghir: We believe in innovation and leadership – the qualities that have helped us maintain our growth and undertake expansion even in these bitter economic times. We have over a hundred positions open at the moment, which clearly shows our growing business needs and highlights our achievements. This positive outlook, coupled with our excellent working environment, competitive salary packages and first-rate employment benefit programs, has made us the first choice for job seekers.

Q.5. Human Resources are the first causalities of an economic slowdown. What is your company strategy to deal with this challenge?

Ms. Shama Saghir: The human resources are the most valuable asset a company has. They’re like the life-blood of an organization.

We expect our resources to pursue continued professional development to stay on the top in this highly competitive and demanding market. The fate of an organization and that of its workers are intertwined, and I think our resources understand that. This is one of the reasons that while others are busy trying to manage their lay-offs, we continue to invite more talent.

Q.6.As far as Industry linkages are concerned do you feel that Industry will continue to support academia?

Ms. Shama Saghir: If it is serious about improving its long-term business prospects in a knowledge-based economy, the industry should not only retain its links with academia but strengthen them. Otherwise, the industry will be faced with a dearth of workers with the right skill sets to propel its future growth.

A partnership between academia and the industry is a win-win for all and is absolutely crucial in producing graduates who are marketable and are ready to hit the ground running.

Q.7. How would you rate success and importance of online recruitment firms such as ROZEE.PK?

Ms. Shama Saghir: Online recruitment firms are certainly going to play a major role in a digital world. What we are witnessing is just the beginning…

Rozee has proven itself the number one job portal in Pakistan. It has done an excellent job in building a relationship between various market forces and bringing the employers and prospective employees together. As the economy expands and gives birth to new employment opportunities, the job seekers will increasingly look toward recruitment firms like Rozee.

Q.8. How has ROZEE helped your firm regarding recruitment i.e. Have you tried any recruitment tools provided by ROZEE e.g. Job Fairs/Job Postings/CV Search?

Ms. Shama Saghir: We have been using the Rozee portal for two years now, and have also participated in the job fairs arranged by Rozee. Our booth at the last Rozee job fair generated very high interest and attracted more online traffic than any other booth. As I mentioned earlier, we are trying to fill over a hundred vacant positions, and, naturally, that is something that engages people’s attention. We also made sure that a facilitator is always present at the booth to guide the job seekers.

We appreciate the platform that Rozee has provided us to demonstrate our success and potential, and reach out to a very large audience in the job market. We hope that Rozee will continue to play its important role, and look forward to strengthening our mutually beneficial relationship.

Q.9. Tell us about your educational life.

Ms. Shama Saghir: I was a pretty good student. I was also always conscious of the fact that there is more to learning than memorizing course books. I actively participated in the extracurricular activities, and strived for a healthy balance in my student life.

I have a Master’s degree in Business Education from the University of the Punjab. It could be interesting to note that at that time, HR Management was being offered as a course and not as a full-fledged specialization. We could specialize either in marketing or finance. It is good to see the educational institutions finally catching up with the global trends in realizing the value and potential of HR Management.

I also feel that a person’s education doesn’t end with his or her final degree. In my professional life, I had had the invaluable opportunity to be a part of the development and evolution of many new HR processes at the companies I have been with. I also consider it an excellent continuing learning experience.

Q.10.What are the biggest turn-offs in an interview/a job applicant?

Ms. Shama Saghir: The biggest turn-offs are the candidates:

– Who do not have well-defined objectives in life or career
– Whose knowledge about life and profession has been borrowed exclusively from books
– Who do not have well thought-out ideas and opinions of their own.

Q.11. What do you look for in a candidate during a hiring interview session? Name 4 key things?

Ms. Shama Saghir:

• Passion to do something
• Sense of responsibility
• Teamwork
• Positive approach towards life

14 thoughts on “Assistant Manager HR, i2c inc/Innovative Private Limited, Ms. Shama Saghir, Identifies the Key to the Door of Success!

  1. It is very informative and agree to recommend our universities to change our conventional education practices and try to induct some out of the box intellectual approaches so that students and professionals like us will get maximum benefit from it however it is not only limited to our universities, our students and professional also need to palpable towards their objectives as in total their long term objectives will grow them and our country too.

    M. Furqan Ghazipura
    Manager HR – Admin
    Converge Technologies Private Limited.

  2. It is a very informative interview from Ms. Shama Saghir. I just want to share my idea that Ms. Shama and other HR Managers should deliver lectures to fresh graduates. I am working in HR department myself for the last two years and plan to utilize my knowledge with students for their better future. This is going to be my strategy of producing well-prepared candidates in the job market.

  3. I think this is a very good discussion. But the important thing is that most of organizations prefer degree status in their recruitment process. Specially, positions related to non-technical departments. But I think that experience of the work has its own importance. For example, if i am going to hire an HR or personnel Officer, I will not only think about the degree but also experience. And if I have two candidates, one holding a Master Degree whilst other a graduate but he has a wide range of experience, I will always prefer the second one.

    I think our universities are just producing clerks, and there are very few institute who offer their students a practical session. Therefore, when a student leaves the university, he does not have any practical knowledge. And when he joins any organization, he has to learn everything from the beginning. So, I suggest to all recruiters while hiring the individuals that please give importance to the relevant experience and knowledge as well as the degree he has acquired.

  4. Thanks for allowing me to share my comments.

    First of all its nice to hear from HR Professionals about their experiences.

    There is no shortage of talent in Pakistan. We have ample of raw talent here but unfortunately University Grant Commission Pakistan issued license to so many private universities without much check and balance that they start business rather than providing quality education.

    As far as my experience is concerned, I think if we want quality professionals in any field we have to curtail the institutes that are issuing the degrees we have to impose a check and balance system.

    Human Resource is definitely one of the core area in development of any organization but due to different standards of universities and availability of cheap professionals from law category universities that really hurt the organizations badly.

    So I hope that govt and authorities must think about it for the betterment of country.

    Thanks

    Syed Shariq Ali,
    HR Executive,
    CPECC

  5. Salam,
    Ms. Shama, Your information is right but jobs can only be gotten by references. I am a student of MBA and want to get a job but there’s no response from any firm due to the economic slump or other factors.

  6. Miss Shamsa it really great to see that we have very talented females as well as males. I will pray that God give you success on every step of your professional & domestic life.
    Thanks,
    Tauqeer Khan
    Lahore, Pakistan

  7. Thank you, Rozee and Ms. Shama, for sharing valuable knowledge and information.

    Our universitites will not be able to produce the productive Human Capital until they will not be closely linked with the industry, particularly faculty members. If faculty will not have the pracital knowledge,they can’t deliver valuable lectures.

  8. I am living and working at a senior position in Canada. I read this interview through facebook. As I am doing HR functions at my job as well, i read every single word of this interview with interest.

    First of all i must appreciate Rozee to design very sharp and direct questions. I was so impressed after reading the answers given by this assistant manager. Her words, ideas and themes were very composed. Every single word of this interview is a great help for the new comers in the job market. The way this manager has described the company attractive and work/life balance is the answer to a very traditional question “why do you want to join this company”. These parts of the interview will certainly beneficial to a large number of Pakistani applicants.

    Being a professional I agree with the manager that universities need some change in curriculum and that change has to be market directed. There is a strong need for the linkage between town and gown.

    I remember when i used to be the head of faculty in a Pakistani university, the students always used to feel that the degree is the only keep to their success. Miss Shama’s interview is a guidance for the students that every interview is customized and need sharp and targeted preparation.

    In the end I pay tributes to ROZEE for their professional work and to a handful of this type of managers who are like tower of light for many new comers.

    thanks

    Nadeem Bhatti
    Canada

  9. Very Useful Answer by Ms. Shama Saghir. Great work Rozee and Ms. Shama Saghir

    Thanks,

    Aaqil KhaTTak

  10. Rozee is back. Thnx for sharing helpful thoughts regarding HR, career and life.

    Much of the business world has changed in recent decades. The time of knowledge-and-performance based economy has arrived. Continuous-And-Never-ending–Improvement CANI approach is the way to be at top. If somebody thinks his/her degree taught them enough, sooner or later he will discover, how wrong they were. Self education is the key to grow.

    “Formal education will make you a living; self education will make you a fortune” (Jim Rohn, My Mentor)

    I also agreed with Mr. Tathir Akram’s suggestion to resume offline job fair.

    Javed Iqbal
    Educator| Empowerer| Entrepreneur
    Lahore, Pakistan

  11. Its quite an insightful and impressive discussion about hiring and recruiting with Ms. Shama.

    What I suggest to Rozee.pk is to resume back to offline job fairs. Those were more interactive and interesting to participate. You happen to meet people physically and you get a good change to network your professional relationships.

    Tahir Akram
    Sr. Software Engineer at i2c Inc.

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