Tata Power is India's largest integrated power company with a significant international presence. The company has an installed generation capacity of 5299 MW in India and a presence in all the segments of the power sector - Generation (thermal, hydro, solar and wind), Transmission, Distribution and Trading. It is one of the largest renewable energy players in India and is developing the country's first 4000 MW Ultra Mega Power Project at Mundra (Gujarat) based on super-critical technology. Its international presence includes strategic investments and collaborations in other countries. With its track record of technology leadership, project execution excellence, world class safety processes, customer care and driving green initiatives, Tata Power is poised for a multi-fold growth. The Hindu Opportunities spoke to Mr. Padmanabhan, Executive Director, Tata Power on the company’s HR initiatives. Mr. Padmanabhan is a gold medallist in Electronics and Communication Engineering from PSG College of Technology, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. He is also a Glaxo gold medallist for the Marketing Stream from the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore. Prior to joining the Company, he was the Executive Director and Head Global Human Resources of Tata Consultancy Services Limited. He has rich experience in large-scale project build-up and delivery, and is highly acclaimed for global sourcing and value creation in operational efficiencies.
Tell us about your employee development programmes.
Our employee development programmes cut across all levels and are designed keeping in mind the organisation’s strategic objectives. We have a process of revisiting our people strategy in line with our business strategy. We also make appropriate modifications in our development programmes to provide our employees the best of the developmental opportunities.
Some of the developmental programmes which have proved to be extremely rewarding for our employees and organisation are:
Tata Reflections: Tata Reflections multi-rater workshop conducted for top management every year for self development. It basically consists of 360 degree feedback for top management and working out action plans based on feedback for improvement for leadership effectiveness
Legacy Statements: Senior leaders of Tata Power Group come together and articulate their own personal legacy that they would like to leave behind for impact on business and impact on people.
Manager Assimilation Programme (MAP): This is designed for all levels of managers who own a team. It provides an opportunity for the team to know their leader better and also provides leaders an opportunity to understand his/her team better through a structured interactive session. This has been designed on the concept of Johari window, where focus is to enlarge the first quarter of Johari window (known to the person and known to others)
Cross Functional Teams (CFTs): This is applicable to all employees - CFTs are formed across the organisation to take up projects which contribute to personal development, knowledge sharing, teamwork and personal stretch.
FUSION: This is a technical mentorship programme to develop technical leadership in young employees by leveraging expertise available with experienced or superannuated colleagues.
STEP: Strategic Training for Employee Progress - is designed for all levels of managers to make them ready for the next work level challenges. It consists of STEP-EDP (Employee Development Programme) - designed for first time managers, STEP-MDP (Management Development Programme) - Designed for middle level managers and STEP-LDP (Leadership Development Programme) (Step-iCare) for senior management or people leaders designed for developing people skills in leaders and to enable leaders to create and maintain engaged teams.
We have an executive MBA programme in association with leading institutes for developing managerial skills in employees. Also our employees participate in Tata Group level leadership development programme, which are specially designed for high performing officers in Tata Group companies.
We provide technical training by partnering with OEMs, premier technical and management institutes to keep us abreast with the latest in the industry.
Technical training on simulators is provided to give real life training.
E-learning initiatives are available for all employees - To enable employees to learn at their own pace, various e-learning platforms like TARANG (for developing technical acumen) Prof Simply Simple (for developing financial acumen) and Gyan Jyoti (for developing managerial acumen) are established which are widely used across organisation.
Innovation is a daily norm at Tata Power Company Limited. Various innovation platforms are made available to our employees which help them post challenges, provide suggestions, form teams, seek advice and work together.
Employees are nominated for national and international conferences to give them an outside-in perspective.
Competency mapping and gap analysis supplemented with directed training and development efforts form the basis of developmental activities in our organisation.
Employee volunteering for social activities is also encouraged
Based on the need to provide systematic information of career development to all management staff, Career Maps are developed. The Career Maps indicate various career options available and competencies required in a particular career choice. It helps employees take proactive career decisions for the mutual benefit of the individual and the organisation.
What are your specific talent management initiatives?
ACE is the in-house fast track programme at Tata Power which provides an opportunity to young officers to not only accelerate their career growth but also explore different avenues and develop their potential. The selected candidates undergo intensive training at reputed training institutes like IIM-A. On successful completion of the training, they undertake challenging project assignments in the organisation. There is high involvement of top leadership in selecting ACErs.
Strategic Training for Employee Progress (STEP) is a programme designed to develop managerial skills of the employees for handling greater responsibilities. Leadership Effectiveness & Development (LED) discussion is a leadership development initiative for top leaders. In LED, leaders engage in a tripartite discussion with the leader concerned, senior leader and the HR facilitator about the person’s aspirations, career path, strengths, OFIs and developmental plan.
There is high involvement of HoDs and senior leaders in Talent Management and Succession Planning process. Identification and development of Hi-Pots, critical positions and successors for critical positions is done after discussions with HoDs and top leaders based on the employees’ past performance, potential and aspirations. A concrete developmental plan is chalked out which is regularly monitored for implementation. We do not stop here; we also discuss our talent at Tata Group level in which top leaders of the Tata Group engage in developmental discussions which are recorded for implementation.
What are your unique HR practices regarding recruitment?
Some of the unique HR practices in the area of recruitment are:
Systematic process of sourcing résumés for all current and future requirements through Tata Power website
Internal advertisements of all positions up-to mid-level within the Company, followed by within the Tata Group, before moving to external sourcing
Periodical special drive for employee’s children
REAL (Recruitment Effective Analysis) to verify the success of recent recruitments
New Employee Induction programmes like HELLO (Helping Employees Launch and Learn in the Organisation) and NEST (Nurturing Engagement with Satisfaction and Trust) to enhance acclimatisation experience among the new joinees and their colleagues. Both these programmes aim at engaging periodically with new recruits to monitor their progress in the organisation.
Give details about your initiatives regarding gender equality and diversity.
We are an equal employment opportunity organisation. Our initiatives in the Affirmative Action space are aimed at ensuring socially disadvantaged communities are enabled adequately and become part of main stream. While all other parameters are the same, we give preference to the employees based on gender equality and diversity. While recruiting employees, we recruit freshers from institutes across country, the preference being given to the institutes near project sites. Special efforts are also taken to improve the employability of people near and around the power plant project areas.
What are the unique benefits you provide to employees?
Some of our unique benefits are:
For employees who serve the Company for a long time, our policy on gratuity payment is employee friendly and gives higher benefit compared to the Act
Sick leave encashment is also an employee friendly benefit given to employee on retirement.
Post retirement medical benefit facility is provided for all employees
Various facilities like accommodation, transport , guest house, medical facilities are provided for employees
For employees in remote areas, special allowance is given
High Merit employees’ children are helped with higher education facilities
Employment opportunities are provided for employees’ children
What are the HR policies you have planned for your employees in the future?
We constantly align people strategy with our business strategy. As per our strategic intent, thrust areas for organisation involvement are identified. Our people strategy is based on 4 pillars:
Capacity: Based on organisational strategic intent, organisation structure is continuously aligned along with required manpower planning.
Capability: The competencies required for sustaining and growing business are identified and tracked at individual, decisional and organisational level. An innovative measure Human Capital Readiness Index which tracks functional as well as behavioural competencies has been designed. Necessary development plans are organised for filling competency gaps.
Culture: The required cultural pillars for achieving organisational goals have been identified and interventions like organisation transformation have been designed.
Systems: Systems and processes are updated with focus on automation.