Chapter I – Brush with Agile
Agile in HR is something that never crossed my mind, until I had the chance to attend a couple of interesting SCRUM sessions by Hugo H.Messer (Agile Coach) and Lekha Philip (Scrum Trainer), a few months ago. I was just a mere listener in those meetings with no idea about Scrum at all. The whole idea of Agile HR originated as a result of the increasing popularity of Agile that strive to make changes on a daily basis. The points that stood out for me at these sessions, were about the transparency and self-organization.
Baby Steps with Agile in HR
The sessions inspired me enough to get thinking about how I could bring in transparency and self-organizing to the HR department. We are a small team of 2, which challenged the norm of team strength requirements in Scrum. I sought the advice of my colleague, who is a Scrum trainer. In her opinion, we need not be rigid on the rules, and it would be best to see how it suits us on the go.
Assigning responsibility and delegating work is easy, but to have your team feel the real essence of work ownership and to be proactive is an effort, which we cannot bring about by written rules. This would require bringing in transparency, analyzing short work results, and having regular feedback loops. Agile seemed to be the answer.
As per my colleague, the most important task I had to get done, before going Agile, was to list out all the priorities and mundane tasks of the HR department. Once we have this backlog of sorts, it would help us in figuring out a way to assign work in a sprint. We decided that using Trello (project management tool) was the way to go, as it had a very easy interface.
I created a list named –“HR Backlog” and set about adding cards for all the tasks that we handled in our regular process. As the list kept growing, I did have my doubts as to how these tasks could be accommodated in a sprint, mostly towards the estimating part.
How could we ever estimate a recruitment cycle?
I shared the Trello board with the Scrum trainer and set up a meeting slot to discuss this further. As she checked the board and the backlog items, she gave me a quick call on Skype. “Listen, the recruitment cycle is going be a tough one!” she said. Aha, I knew it!
“But I am sure we can crack it. Let me do some thinking, and meanwhile please list out all the different steps involved in a recruitment cycle, right from a CV screening to the induction”.
So now I have my notepad open and I am going to list out all the steps that comes into the picture while recruiting a candidate. I am curious about how we would find a solution here and am looking forward to the meeting.
So stay tuned for the next chapter, where we would have hopefully found the magic formula!