Drive Excellence

HERE ARE A FEW SUCCESS STORIES FROM MY PAST...


CUSTOMER SATISFACTION THROUGH QUALITY WORK

Late 2003, I hired a Consultant named DG. He was assigned to an IBM project at ML. This was a highly visible project and one that warranted great attention since it dealt directly with their financial services division. DG’s job was to attend a knowledge transfer session from one of IBM’s key resources over the next 8 hours and to carry on with the project from there. IBM’s resource was being sent back to their off shore location that evening. A day later, ML’s entire application broke down and things came to a screeching halt. IBM’s top management and ML’s VPs came running down to this project team to request them to revive the application immediately. Unfortunately, not one of the existing team members was capable enough to accomplish this formidable task. In sheer desperation, they reached out to IBM’s key resource who at this point just landed in India. After a few unsuccessful trials, she surrendered too. ML was losing serious money by the hour and it needed all the help it could get. A Sr. VP was made in-charge to solve this crisis and he immediately summoned a meeting in which he asked if there was anyone who considered himself/herself capable of fixing this problem. My candidate DG stepped up to the challenge and accepted it. Instantly, ML’s Sr. VP made DG a team lead and urged everyone else to cooperate with him. It took DG about 24 hours to analyze the applications and understand its glitches. By then, he was working 18-hour workdays to resolve this disaster. Looking back, it is hard to believe that ML’s Sr. VP  arranged for a Limo for my consultant to get to work. After 3 days of incredible effort, DG and his team succeeded in breathing life back in to the system. Things were all back to normal soon. The following week, DG got another job and was about to take it up due to the difference in wage rates. I urged DG to reconsider his decision. ML’s Sr. VP spoke to DG personally, thanked him for his dedication and hard work and then did the unexpected. He doubled DG’s contract rate from that very hour and DG stayed on to finish the remainder of the project.  Such is the quality of my candidates. IBM and ML were both delighted with DG’s work and only had great things to say about him.
Moral of this story is that I make sure my customer is happy with my candidates.
I focus on Quality.


PERSISTENCE PAID OFF


In 2006, IIC started working on a new account in the Northeast. This was a brand new lead and no business was done with this group earlier. While my colleagues at IIC gave up on this account declaring it worthless, I relentlessly pursued it and generated approximately $400,000 revenue in the last 12 months for the company just from one specific client manager. Even better is the fact that this manager deals with IIC exclusively now and he has good things to say about me and our company. Because of the trust and relationship that I built, he prefers not to deal with any other vendor. Lately, this client expanded and we are generating $2 Million dollars per annum from them. On several occasions, I had to skim through 300+ profiles to get one perfect candidate for this manager. As they say, you have to shuck through a lot of smelly oysters to find that rare pearl...
I feel that my effort was definitely worth it and am happy to help. I enjoy such challenges. 

ATTENTION TO DETAIL - 31 to 1 RATIO

It was January of 2005. My extended New Year celebrations just ended and I was happily recruiting as usual. A contract position for mainframe development opened up in Dearborn MI with a highly reputed Big 4 consulting company. Our client needed a mid-level candidate with Property & Casualty insurance experience to handle this assignment. It is a matter of common knowledge that mainframe is not a tough skill to source and as expected our client received 31 resumes for this position. Surprisingly only 6 had previous P&C insurance background and they were passed for further screening. Out of these 6 resources, only 3 were local and they were shortlisted for a final review. Among the final 3 contenders, 2 of them had more than 25 years of total experience and thus were rejected as overqualified candidates. The third candidate KL who had 8 years of IT experience was called for an interview and was subsequently offered the job. KL was my recruit and she started on Jan 26th, 2005. I am grateful to the client manager who was kind enough to share these details with us.
“Attention to detail” is an important attribute for a staffing professional and being a manager, I frequently encourage my team to focus more on minute details. I sincerely believe that little things bring about big changes both in career and life.

"The Perfect Interview" - A Leaf Out Of Rajiv's Recruitment Diary

In December of 2004, I witnessed what I could perhaps term – “The Perfect interview”.
My client (A very large Systems Integrator) had an opening for a Sr. AIX Team lead based in CT. The current team lead was retiring that week. This was a high-visibility critical role for my customer as it directly oversaw the stability of several multi-million dollar business accounts. My customer had this position open internally for more than 2 months and was interviewing candidates aggressively to fill this role. They wanted to promote an internal candidate but unfortunately they could not find anyone who was qualified for this task. Finally, on December 2nd 2004, they opened up a job requisition for this vacancy and a copy of the job order landed on my computer. I immediately reached out to my network and after elaborate conversations with several applicants, decided to move forward with one. His name was CM and he was at this time working in NYC with a large bank. He was unhappy about his commute to NYC and wanted to get back to CT. I felt pretty good about CM’s candidacy as he had previously worked for the same client at the very same location and indicated that he knew the set-up and team there. He had authored several AIX manuals in the past and was a well known expert in AIX technical circles.
I heard back from the hiring manager that they knew CM well and that they were very much interested in considering him for the position. A phone interview with CM was scheduled for December 6th 2004 and I was to mediate the discussion. What followed on was unbelievable:
Here is a snippet of the conversation between both parties:
Client: Hi CM, How are you? We worked together previously on the XXX project. Hope you remember me.
CM: Yes, I very much do. I had a great time working on that project. It feels nice to talk to you guys again.
Client: I and my team are well aware of your technical strengths. So I will not waste your time talking about it. I only have 2 questions for you. Why are you coming back and will you stay with us?
CM: Well, put it this way – I am really tired of chasing the rainbow. I would love to be back and yes, I plan to stay.
Client: Glad to hear. It almost seems like god sent you to us at the right time. Welcome aboard CM. I will process your paperwork and you can start in a couple of weeks.
Thanks Rajiv for your help. Please keep an eye out for CM’s signed work order. I will send out all the required approvals today.
CM worked as a contractor there for 2 years and subsequently was hired by my client as a full-time employee.
I am fortunate enough to have staffed several top-notch candidates like this one. I like it when I put a smile on my customer’s face.