The company plans to hire about 150 students across campuses — a two-fold jump over last year — and has begun engaging with colleges to set up workshops, leadership talks, and internship programs, a top executive told ET.
“Ola is now gearing up to be an inclusive organization…and this is also one of the biggest HR challenges that we have today, where we have experienced folks and young people working together to build a high-performance organization,” said Rohit Munjal, Chief Human Resource Officer at Ola.
The Class of 2019 is likely to be awash with job offers from startups including Ola, Amazon, Flipkart, Meesho, and Bounce among others, with companies looking to rope in students adept at dealing with a fast-paced, agile environment, ET reported last week.
In a bid to train fresh graduates, Ola has launched a year-long induction program where a new joiner goes through a curriculum to smoothen the transition from academics to the workforce. Ola’s businesses include ride-hailing, electric vehicles, and financial services.
“Young hires bring us disruptive, no baggage thoughts on problem-solving… one of our most popular products, Ola Auto, for example, was suggested and launched by an intern,” Munjal told ET.
This year, Ola also launched a case study competition for management students, with the promise of the 10 best teams being offered the opportunity to be mentored by the company’s leadership team and get a real-life experience of the business.
“Of 400-500 people we plan to hire by March, 150 will be from campus,” he said. Interestingly, the average age of employees at Ola is 24-27 years, he said.
ADDRESSING OLA’S TOP LEVEL EXITS
Munjal also said Ola would continue to drive a “high performance-driven” work culture, across levels, even as it has seen a slew of top management exits over the last couple of years.
“Exits happen. I don’t see this as something we can’t grapple with. We need to continue to invest in middle management layer where they can be groomed much faster and be selective in who can fit the Ola-first culture. I think that’s the biggest shift we are trying to bring in,” Munjal said.
Over the last few years, Ola has been unable to retain seasoned top-level executives that it hired, including Pranav Tiwari, the head of engineering; Joy Bandekar, corporate president for new initiatives; and Susheel Balakrishnan, who served as its Chief People Officer.