RIL Steps in to Help Employees ‘Step Up’ To roll out two schemes to retain talent: one to help employees chart own career by changing functions, other for growth in the same function
Mumbai: Reliance Industries (RIL) is rolling out a cocktail of initiatives to retain talent, allowing career rotation and vertical growth within the oil-to-telecom conglomerate.
Under its Career Acceleration Program (CAP), the group will allow employees to chart their career growth by changing their business functions after a series of tests and interviews. The ‘Step Up’ programme will help an employee grow within the same function, with some mentoring to gear up for the next level quickly.
These are part of the group’s efforts to strengthen the employee-employer relationship as it gears to launch the data-focused mobile telephony business this financial year.
Reliance Industries, owned by India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani, had made an attempt previously to build talent at the senior level. Around four years ago, the group rolled out a programme for the senior management, called the Reliance Accelerated Leadership Program (RALP).
With the help of consulting company McKinsey, the group had shortlisted around 90 candidates over three years. They were expected to be mentored by the chairman, top brass and posted in the strategic offices across the group. Industry insiders said it never worked out well and many of those who were shortlisted have quit the programme.
There have been no recruits under RALP since 2013. An executive from the group said there may be a pause, but it will hire for RALP when the need arises. Right now, the focus is on building talent from within through CAP and Step Up.
“At Reliance, it is our policy to develop young leaders, so that they take on higher responsibilities at an early age. This is done across all business and functions,” a Reliance spokesperson said in an email.
“This objective is achieved through various leadership development programmes such as RALP. In addition, we have launched many other leadership development programmes such as CAP and the Step Up programme,” the spokesperson said.
The group is also trying to bring in changes in terms of perfor- mance management, work-life balance and give it an image of an employee-friendly employer.
This became important especially when it saw a spate of exits from the human resource section last year. In July 2015, Prabir Jha, then the chief human resources officer, resigned and the post was taken up by Hital R Meswani, a cousin of Ambani.
“The feedback from all such programmes has been extremely positive and we stand committed to these programmes and hope to build on the success till date to make them truly industry leading programmes that provide unprecedented opportunities to young leaders for growth and career development,” the spokesperson said. A few months ago, communications unit Reliance Jio Infocomm, ahead of the slated commercial launch this year, offered its servi- ces first to employees and sought feedback from them. The Jio office at its corporate headquarters saw a new look. It has no cabins, not even for chairman Ambani.
On Friday, Reliance Industries reported a 16% year-on-year increase in net profit, including exceptional items, at .₹ 7,398 crore for the quarter ended March 31. After the results announcement, the group said it is awaiting spectrum integration that it expects to get from a sharing-and-trading pact with Reliance Communications, besides scaling up its user base to a few million before launching 4G services under Jio.
Business houses across India are relooking at ways in which they can retain their best lot and prevent them from joining competitors. They want to emphasise that there is a career trajectory planned across levels.