Q&A with Arusha Gupta from UK Top Employer LTIMindtree
Introduce yourself and tell us about your organisation
LTIMindtree is a leading global technology consulting firm. With a global workforce of over 90,000 employees and a blend of strong engineering expertise combined with extensive experience across a range of sectors, LTIMindtree helps businesses transform so they can thrive in the future. With a unique blend of the engineering DNA with the experience DNA, LTIMindtree helps businesses get to the future, faster.
I have over two decades of Global HR experience in the technology industry. I started my journey with LTI in 2017, before the company merged with Mindtree to become LTIMindtree in November 2022. During these incredible six years, I have led multiple programmes and initiatives across the globe. Currently, Heading the HR Function for European Region, Africa, and Global Markets, to help the teams to develop, and thrive. I am privileged to work with a highly dynamic, capable, and diverse workforce brimming with ideas and passion to deliver results.
What will be the biggest people challenge you expect your business to be facing in 2023? And what will you do to meet this challenge?
The biggest people challenge facing LTIMindtree this year is integration. Following our recent merger and with a combined workforce of over 90,000, we face an exciting challenge to ensure the seamless people integration. While efforts towards, processes, systems, ways of working are getting harmonised, the foundation of it is lies in effective change management with people at its core.
To manage the process, we created three roles: Change Ambassadors, Change Champions and Change Leaders along with different initiatives and activities where we listen and solve problems together. The voice of people is central to what we do, so we needed to ensure we created opportunities for them to have the say at every step. These initiatives also enable us to capture key insights that we might not have considered and quickly come up with the right solutions to ensure our integration strategy stays on track.
We are being creative and thinking on the feet as there are multiple dimensions at play and every individual and group has different perspective and need. There isn’t a simple answer but our approach is to do it ‘together’.
Tell us about a recent initiative you have instigated within your organisation that you are most proud of?
The HR team plays a leading role in developing strategies and programmes to ensure we nurture our talent. This has been particularly important following the merger, where effective people integration is critical for success.
One programme that is close to my heart is ‘Genesis’, designed to upskill employees who are in the early stages of their careers. We designed and developed it during the pandemic and now we have high-performing interns, learners and apprentices across the UK, France, Sweden, Denmark, Poland and South Africa with over 75% of the talent from this programme are women.
Given that this is the first time we were doing it, there were multiple challenges. While normally such programs have scale, however we were doing it in different countries and the cohort was spread out. We converted each challenge into an opportunity and ensure that the participants gained from the diversity of the group.
But what makes this programme unique is how we created it from the ground up decided to invest in Data Science and tailored it specifically for the Gen Z audience. The design covered aspects like regular feedback, a buddy programme, mentoring and assignments which were customised for each country to make it suitable for the talent there. We also encouraged all participants to learn fast, fail fast and challenge us with their ideas and thinking.
I believe it is programmes like these that will help LTIMindtree to constantly push the boundaries of what’s possible and help us all to get to the future faster.
Which of your people initiatives has done most to create a more personalised employee experience?
As the first impression of a company is normally the lasting impression, we put a lot of effort into personalising our onboarding programme for new employees. By creating a more personalised experience tailored to the employee’s level, experience and preferences, we believe it helps employees to feel more at home and get up to speed faster.
We also conduct regular personalised pulse surveys to understand their views on well-being, the working environment and their career progression. These are key contributors to improving our employee engagement.
The insights tool providing personal insights to our talent about their work pattern, quiet time interruptions, collaboration time and personalised recommendations to balance between urgent and important.
Our sustainability initiatives like ‘walk for a cause’ brings people together for a common purpose but enable them to achieve it at their own pace. The gamification aspect also encourages and rewards them while we attempt to reduce our carbon footprint.
How do you make sure you listen – and keep listening - to your employees, especially during periods of change?
Great question and relevant to each one at every step of their career. Also, given that many of our employees work remotely or hybrid, listening is now more critical than ever.
To address this, we created a three-pronged approach to listening using standard tools capturing:
- Overall employee feedback through annual surveys and regular feedback.
- Process/programme-based feedback through regular dipstick surveys.
- Continued dialogue: Our intranet @workplace is a source of continuous dialogue and feedback.
But true listening is not just about hearing what employees have to say, it’s about taking the right actions as a result. To ensure we act on feedback, we have a platform that consolidates feedback from various sources and helps prioritise the required actions. It also acts like a tracker board where cross-functional teams can mark actions and progress which are then visible to everyone. This transparency helps reinforce the culture of continuous improvement and encourages us to be honest and open. The results are then shared at quarterly virtual townhalls, in-person events and workshops.
In our organisation, employees are the change leads. They propose, present and participate in the change they want to see. So, we’re always listening.
What are you doing specifically to make sure that everyone in your business feels they have a chance to develop their careers?
Being a technology services organisation, people development is directly proportionate to business growth. The technology landscape is changing at an extremely fast pace, and we have the right tools and platforms to enable adaptation, learning and implementation. We also have a mature and progressive global career framework that is built on the foundation of competency groups and job types with the ability to move horizontally and vertically. 20% of the roles are fulfilled with upskilled and reskilled talent.
Career development is baked into our performance management system, it is also a pivotal conversation from an employee engagement perspective. To make it meaningful and objective we have platforms that help us formalise career development plans and individual development plans that are co-created by employees and their managers. They are aspirational and futuristic, and their effectiveness is measured through metrics like internal talent movements, role fulfilment through upskilling and reskilling and duration in a role.
Tell us how you help your employees to understand and shape the social purpose and values driving your business?
Actions speak louder than words. At LTIMindtree, our values are defined in four simple terms - Act with Compassion, Driven by Purpose, Be Future Ready and Deliver Impact. These are behavioural and simple acts that enable us to be inclusive and deliver impact.
From our people practices to volunteering programmes for society, our focus is on education, empowerment, and the environment.
To celebrate the launch of LTIMindtree, each employee had a tree planted in their name. They were given a personalised certificate for their tree, along with photographs and location details. Through a web-based, blockchain-powered backend system, employees could also monitor its growth. Overall, we planted 100,000 trees which also made a significant contribution to our sustainability goals.
For education, we partnered with several schools in London to encourage students to opt for STEM subjects. We did this by going into the classroom and showing them different technologies to get them excited about the endless possibilities of working in technology.
Overall, our open-door policy and transparency and clarity in communication enable open dialogue and encourage employee involvement. Our Top Employer scores in the UK demonstrate a similar story with Shape, Attract and Develop scoring visibly higher than the Benchmark Domain Score.