Tuesday 26 August 2014

Ten Guidelines for taking effective interviews

Here are ten guidelines that I follow for taking interviews. You may find them useful.
  1. Dress as per your company policy.
  2. Introduce yourself and greet the candidate with a handshake and a friendly smile.
  3. Make candidate comfortable and at ease before you begin with your questions. 
  4. Show respect and treat the candidate as your customer.
  5. Use a friendly tone of voice. 
  6. Listen more and let the candidate do most of the talking.
  7. Do not take mobile calls during the interview.
  8. Do not engage in arguments with the candidate.
  9. Do not offer right answers or feedback for improvement.
  10. End on positive note, regardless of the outcome.

Sunday 24 August 2014

Differentiators for IT Services Providers from the perspective of Enterprise IT Buyer

As Enterprise IT Buyer, how can you differentiate IT service providers? I propose Solutions, Automation and Scale (SAS) can help here. If a IT service provider is a pure-play service provider without any solutions built based on its past experience then its service offering reduces to professional services. Nothing wrong about it. But a service provider with ready solutions can help reduce time-to-market for IT buyers. Similarly, IT service providers that use automation for delivery of its services can provide lower time-to-market for IT buyers. Last but not least is the scale parameter. While big IT service providers would bring more predictability and stability for its services, small companies would be more responsive and agile than their larger counterparts. I have seen IT buyers choosing large companies for providing IT services for core and/or mission critical components of business but choose small companies for building innovative or even experimental IT solutions.

You may wonder why I have not included cost as a differentiating factor. Yes, cost plays an important role in selection of a vendor but let it happen once you short-list few (say three) vendors based on SAS criteria. Then you can get the best value for money by choosing one of them on the basis of price that they would offer.

Tuesday 19 August 2014

One Day Course on Business Basics

I was recently requested to design one day course on business basics. I thought of designing it as a collection of 10 questions (with answers!). Here are these 10 questions:
  1. Which are different forms of a business organization?
  2. How a company is typically organized?
  3. What do managers do?
  4. What does accounting and finance department do in a company?
  5. What is meant by operations in a company?
  6. What does sales and marketing department do in a company?
  7. What kind of work human resources department do in a company?
  8. How information systems are built and managed in a company?
  9. What is the role of Board of Directors (BoD)?
  10. Question(s) that you wish to ask

Please give your feedback on choice of these questions. Will they be sufficient to know the business basics? If not then which questions should be added? Can they be discussed in one day (6 hours)? If not then which questions should be dropped?