Absence of tough laws make it difficult to blacklist or take legal action against individuals who accept an offer and refuse to join the company later.
Mahesh Dwivedi (name changed) was to join a large services company and had given his date of joining as well. Giving concrete proof, he even sent a copy of his train tickets to show that he was travelling to the city for the job. However, on the date of joining he went absconding. Not only was he untraceable, but had changed his SIM card as well. Turns out, he had joined a rival company.
Absence of tough laws make it difficult to blacklist or take legal action against individuals who accept an offer and refuse to join the company later. But with technology in place, large players in the recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) space like TeamLease Services are now using technology to gauge candidate interest in the job and also offer counselling facilities in case of a doubt.
“We have a post offer follow-up initiative wherein we continuously engage with candidates to gauge their intent to take up a particular offer," N Shivakumar, Business Head-RPO, TeamLease Services said.
"Since, we have service level agreements with clients to recruit a certain number of candidates in a particular time, if candidates don’t join, we have to pay a penalty,” he added.
The RPO industry is estimated to be around Rs 450 crore and is said to be growing at the rate of 30-40 percent every year. RPO refers to a process wherein companies outsource the recruitment requirements to an external agency with service level agreements (SLAs) in place. Instead of engaging multiple level vendors for a few number of candidates, going for RPO not only helps in saving cost but also gives a guarantee of getting the required numbers in time.
Shivakumar said that the traditional manufacturing companies are cautious in engaging with candidates who have been found accepting multiple offers and counter offers or not respecting an offer letter that has been made, which they have accepted.
“Making use of the National Skills Registry at an industry level could be helpful in tracking down candidates. Further, the government should also bring reforms that would make it mandatory for individuals to honor the contract,” Shivakumar said.
IT industry body NASSCOM has taken up the initiative to develop a robust information infrastructure about all present and prospective employees of the industry called ‘National Skills Registry (NSR)’. NSR facilitates development of fact sheet of credible, permanent and accessible information about each registered person. This information can be accessed and used by the industry and its clients with the authorisation of such registered person.
Though this is at a nascent stage, Shivakumar said that they would want a ‘geo-tagging’ initiative, so that they know where exactly a candidate is.Firms like TeamLease interact with candidates on a regular basis and try and assuage any pre-conceived notions, fears or doubts about the company especially if it is a startup. Further, employer brand building is also part of the RPO exercise to ensure that the candidate joins the company and does not jump to grab another offer soon after.