Start With People: Hiring As Human Resource Marketing
In this month's Employee Spotlight, SHL’s Swati Tyagi talks about her career journey and why we should focus more on people and connection—for they are the key to an employer brand.
I started my professional journey in June 2013. Today, I take pride in writing about the successful completion of a decade of my career as a recruiter. I call it ‘successful’ as it comes with its fair share of highs and lows, not just for me but also for those who were part of this process along the way, as we all worked hard as one team.
"Each day is the scholar of yesterday," quoted Publilius Syrus, and when I reflect on myself, I see an early career talent in a highly competitive recruitment consulting industry with a limited understanding of what a delightful adventure each day will be. Early in my career, I was lucky to be selected as a technology recruiter in campus placement while pursuing a post-graduate degree in Business Administration—lucky, as I did not have an information technology background. I could solve their puzzles in the hiring interview, and I was selected as a technology recruiter. I demonstrated my intention to learn and my confidence to deliver. I remember I would reach the office early to practice my elevator pitch and read through the profiles I would connect with throughout the day. I realized my candidates took me more seriously when I had follow-up questions on their ongoing projects, career highlights, interest areas, and motivation. I started building connections and engaging passive job seekers, who are now part of my wide network.
I encourage those who are at the start of their career journey and prepare for job interviews to showcase to the prospective employer that you are self-motivated and can learn and grow. Make an effort to sharpen your skills and do not hesitate to try new things. You may make mistakes, but you will discover your capabilities. Who knows, the world always welcomes new inventions (Remember when ChatGPT was launched?).
Despite the inevitable challenges and setbacks that may arise during the talent acquisition process, it is the unique interactions involving 'people'—those who interact with and on behalf of the organization—that ultimately shape the very essence of an employer brand. It is encouraging to see a company grow because of its people and vice versa. I selected Vineet Nayar’s book ‘Employees First, Customers Second: Turning Conventional Management Upside Down’ back in 2011 to learn how to rank and prioritize between employees and customers. I learned that one relevant idea can spark a revolution. Every single employee can create a change not just in the organization but also across the community.
It is the unique interactions involving 'people'—those who interact with and on behalf of the organization—that ultimately shape the very essence of an employer brand.
For people who ask me why I selected HR and not marketing as a career, I say that I see hiring as human resources marketing. I can use this as one term as I create and act as a bridge between human resources and marketing at each stage of the hiring lifecycle. In the early years of my career in recruitment consulting, I was fortunate enough to work with high-value clients, which allowed me to showcase my proficiency in building relationships and managing accounts. My manager trusted me with his most difficult accounts. I remember he told me that I could be the best recruiter not just in his company but also in the market. It has been an absolute honor to have worked for the most demanding clients as it always brought maximum satisfaction and ROI. The idea of providing top-quality candidates as solutions to my clients, while simultaneously offering better career prospects to my candidates in return brings me a deep sense of fulfillment.
I was tasked with setting up the brand marketing team for a renowned company when I came across the first well-wisher for the recruiter in me, ironically a candidate who did not accept the offer—a nightmare for every recruiter. To my sheer surprise, he contacted me a few months later to recognize my efforts and good wishes, mentioning that he achieved spectacular growth in his career because I provided him guidance throughout the interview process and wished the best for him even when his decision not to join my client meant a failure to me. This morale-boosting gesture keeps visiting my memory to empower me to do my best each day.
I try to create synergies between my stakeholders and candidates to help achieve common goals faster. I drew inspiration from my mother, a homemaker, who dedicates herself to our family like a devoted caretaker. She instilled in me the value of self-worth through the work I do.
As an in-house talent advisor, I enjoy being the first voice and face for my company to my candidates. It is important to align your work to your organization’s goals. At SHL, we aim to help our clients create a diverse, agile, and innovative workforce. In my search to find the most suitable candidates, I strategize and execute diverse ways of sourcing, stay agile to match business needs, and wear my innovative hat to stay ahead of the game. This leads me to warmly welcome my candidates onboard, and that ‘thank you’ in return is the reward for my hard work.
I enjoy working at SHL and trust that I will have a successful journey ahead as I am inspired by the people here. The team environment is positive and uplifting because of the #OneTeam philosophy. Our global HR team is a bundle of mind-boggling masterpieces, and I learn from the best thought leaders. I know that I shall flourish at SHL, and cheers to that!
Check out our Careers page to find opportunities to work at SHL!