Employability Mantras For This Decade And Next : Evaluating Your Worth

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I have observed that most of the employees overrate themselves within their organizations just because they happen to do their job well. The job being done well has no relevance to their future employability. Rather most of the people I investigated, I realized that they happen to do the job given well because of the familiarity with the work they kept doing for months and years and not because of their wider knowledge.

IT industry largely survives on billing the hours of skills they have with their employees. The business margin depends on how much the customer pays and in how less they can execute the work. Therefore almost all the time either the employee remains low in cost to the employer or the customer ends up paying high enough for the services being taken from that employee. Both these conditions do not remain the same. This situation remained constant for a long time in the industry. However with rising cost and fight for talent, these two conditions now fluctuate heavily.

It is therefore in theory very safe to remain low cost and continue to give high value to the employer and the client. The situation on ground is just the opposite. Every employee wants to earn more and more, even to the extent that the value they generate for their employers and customers do not keep pace with that increase. The prime objective of every business is to earn profit and if that comes by taking care of the employees, companies ensure that they do so. However if that comes by eliminating the employees whose value is no more what the company wants, even that is happening regularly.

It is therefore necessary for every employee to evaluate his or her market worth. This can be done in few ways.

  1. Evaluate if someone at significantly lower cost can take up your knowledge? Such situations arise in most of the standard commodity skills where supply is always more than the demand. Even someone taking up the job overseas is a significant possibility and that should also be evaluated. If you find the answer to be ‘Yes’, start working quickly to build the distinction that would justify your existence for some more time.
  2. Evaluate what market has to offer for your skills. Looking out in market at regular intervals can give you a feel if market is open for your kind of skills. It is not necessary that this exercise should result in job change. Changing job must be having several other criterions, the most relevant amongst them is the opportunity to learn and increase your value.
  3. Evaluate what you do with your available time apart from doing your assigned job. If you like to chill out and shut yourself off from your work after work, it is high time to re-evaluate your utilization of spare time. A technologist must spent a significant amount of spare time in honing and learning new skills. If that is not done, it is certain possibility that someone else is working harder to replace you.
  4. Do you like your work? If the work is very mundane and is not giving enough opportunity for you to learn, you are at high risk. In case the work gets eliminated, you would not have any other skills that would keep you with your job unless the employer feels pity on you. Do look out for change within or outside the organization if that happens.

I hope, you got some useful tips on knowing your worth. We will discuss more in the next blog.

Alok Kumar

Alok Kumar is Managing Partner of SRKay Consulting group, a private equity company, nurturing innovative ventures. Alok also serves on the board of ICCL (Indian Clearing Corporation Limited - A subsidiary of BSE- Bombay Stock Exchange) as an external advisor for technology and information security. Prior to this, Alok had been Managing Director of Sears IT & Management Services India Private Limited (SHI) since its inception in December 2009 and served in the same position till very recently. Having been in senior IT management positions in Fortune 500 companies, Alok has won several national and international awards. Alok is instrumental in planning and setting up SHI and thereafter growing it to a multi-locational thousand-plus people organization. Over the last five years, with his strategic vision, Alok helped SHI grow roots in India, develop and support technology applications and infrastructure across core mainframe, cutting edge e-Commerce and big data technologies. With his unique people-oriented transformational leadership style, Alok turned SHI into one of the most valued investments of Sears, garnering great ROIs, and creating value much beyond cost arbitrage. Under his tutelage, SHI has filed two patents and is recognized widely for its best practices in various areas, the latter, currently featured in Indian Institute of Management (IIM) case studies. SHI also became a CMMI Level 3, PCMM Level 3, and ISO 20000 certified organization. Alok is a widely acclaimed corporate leader in India today. He regularly participates and leads various forums as a keynote speaker and is an author of several books in different genres. Alok has several awards to his credit. He is particularly known in the industry for his people management skills and innovative ideas in improving the productivity of employees through unique people practices. He has been credited with the following industry awards: ¬ Emerging Leader of the Year award 2013 by IndiasGreatest.com ¬ Game Changer CEO of the Year 2013 (SHRM) ¬ CIO 100 - The Bold CIOs - 2008 (Reliance Infosolutions) ¬ CIO - Ones to Watch Award 2008 (Reliance Industries) ¬ Extended Manager Award - CIOL 2004 (Tata Teleservices) As an able leader of SHI, Alok got SHI recognized widely in the industry with the following several awards: ¬ CII Award for HR Best Practices in 2014 ¬ Global Excellence in Outsourcing Award - AIOP (Phoenix 2013) ¬ IT Innovation Award (Design & Engineering) - Computer Society of India 2012 ¬ Golden Company of the Year - Economic Times 2011-12 ¬ 7th Employer Branding Awards - World HRD Congress (Mumbai, India) 2013: • ‘Asia’s Best Employer’ Award • ‘Best HR Strategy’ in line with business • HR Leadership Award • Talent Management Award by Bloomberg TV India ¬ Employer Branding Awards - World HRD Congress (Singapore, Asia) 2013: • 7th rank in ‘Asia’s Best Employer’ award • Award for ‘Best HR Strategy’ in line with the business • HR Leadership Award Other recognitions: Alok had served on the distinguished panel of NASSCOM's GIC (Global In-house Centers) National Council members. The council members play a key role in major initiatives of the industry and include the torch bearers of IT industry as panel members. Books and Papers: Alok is an established author, with three books to his credit. Alok’s third and latest book, a novel, “The Spy from Unaula” is a 2015 publication. A handwriting analysis enthusiast, Alok collaborated with his wife Nandani on the book, “Handwriting Speaks” in 2006. “Value Sourcing – Future of IT Outsourcing” was co-authored with Keith Sherwell (currently CIO, Altice USA) and was released in 2013. Alok also researched and published two whitepapers: a. “Creating next generation captives” talks about the best practices that are helping generate higher value from the IT company captives.

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