Since its inception, Qatar Cool has aimed for operational excellence in every aspect of its business, including human resources. At its core, Qatar Cool believes in leadership, teamwork and diversity. Throughout the years, the company has built an internal culture based on empowerment, accountability and recognition, and has managed to maintain a professional and rewarding work environment where employees prosper and grow from within. Several measures are used by the company, such as a performance-based compensation plan, as well as a variety of training and self-development opportunities, to ensure truly rewarding career paths for its employees.
In this interview, Bayt.com talks to two HR team members at Qatar Cool, Ms. Aysha Essa Alshriem and Mr. Hasan Imam.
Aysha Eassa Alshriem is the Director of Human Resources and Administration at Qatar Cool. She holds a degree in Computer Engineering from Kuwait University, and an MBA from Cass Business School, City University London.
Aysha has a total of 10 years of experience in the HR field, having started in this field since 2007. A large part of her work includes localization and integration of Qatari nationals into the workforce.
Hasan Imam Khawaja is the Manager of Talent Acquisition and Retention at Qatar Cool. He is a certified HR practitioner, trainer and mentor, with over 18 years of experience in the GCC, Asia and Asia Pacific regions.
Hasan completed his post-graduation education in Human Psychology and Business Administration. He holds the Chartered Manager Status from Chartered Management Institute (CMI) – UK. He is also a Chartered Member of Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) – UK.
A runner-up at the HR Professional of the Year Awards held at the 11th Human Capital Forum (MENA), Hasan is currently pursuing his Chartered Fellowship.
1. What’s the best thing about working at Qatar Cool?
Hasan: Being a part of Qatar Cool validates my decision to work with an organization which truly believes in “professional empowerment”. Our vibrant and rewarding culture takes care of the employees’ emotional connection to the workplace, where we are all strongly connected by a set of core values and their respective associated behaviors.
2. What are the biggest challenges your company faces in hiring national talents?
Aysha: Scarcity is the overarching labor market concern in Qatar. We are not finding enough job seekers with the skills we are looking for, i.e. ones who will take initiative, work on tasks autonomously, and who will flexibly adapt to a changing environment and new challenges.
3. How does Qatar Cool attract and retain national talents? What are your future nationalization plans?
Aysha: At Qatar Cool, we believe in leadership, teamwork and diversity. We have built an internal culture based on empowerment, accountability and recognition. With that in mind, we have managed to maintain a professional and rewarding work environment where our employees can prosper and grow from within.
Future nationalization plans at Qatar Cool include the introduction of a Student Sponsorship Program which provides financial and academic support to Qatari students studying in Qatar and overseas. Students will be provided assistance during their studies, and upon completion, will join Qatar Cool as full-time graduate hires.
4. What are some mistakes candidates make that stand between them and their dream job?
Hasan: Instead of highlighting the mistakes, I would like to share some “best practices” for candidates looking for a job:
• Do a thorough research on different aspects of your chosen company, i.e. company’s history, business model, customers, and most importantly, people, values and culture.
• Create a resonance between yourself and your selected company; it will help you boost your self-confidence and reduce anxiety levels.
• Have a detailed review and understanding of the job responsibilities, accountability and reporting hierarchies.
• Create a complete mapping of your skills with the job requirements.
• Rewrite your CV and job application, while keeping in this mind that on average a reviewer spends 10 to 15 seconds on each CV.
• Keep a record of your applications, so that, in case you receive a response from your preferred company, you can easily refer back and prepare for the next step, accurately and quickly.
5. What can the private sector in Qatar do to attract more nationals to the workforce?
Aysha: According to the latest edition of the Qatar Statistics Authority, the Quarterly Labor Force Survey, 75 per cent of some 1,300 unemployed Qataris surveyed said they were not willing to work at a private company. Of the 25 per cent who would, slightly more men (29 per cent) than women (23 per cent) favored applying for a non-governmental job.
The number one reason given for the reluctance to work in the private sector was unsociable working hours. This was followed by the length of the working day, lower wages compared to the public sector, and the frequent requirement to work a six-day week. If all of these reasons were to be targeted, I think the problem would be solved.
Another option would be for the government to incentivize private companies to hire Qataris by subsidizing training costs, although the amount of such subsidies would need to be carefully determined, and the effects dutifully monitored.
6. How would you say modern technologies, like Bayt.com, have helped you in the hiring process?
Hasan: In today’s cutting-edge business environment, no one can afford to make mistakes. Technology, and notably the “right” technology, plays a major role in the decision-making process. We are fortunate to have Bayt.com as our reliable talent acquisition partner; Bayt.com has been continuously supporting us in our quest to identify, assess, attract and recruit the required talents in the shortest possible time. I strongly believe that Bayt.com is fully capable to provide 360-degree recruitment solutions to its clients.
This article originally appeared in Bayt.com.
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