Bangalore: Infitel, a major IT company has adopted a unique hiring practice. According to the company, a parrot is part of the interview panel to shortlist candidates.
Raj Verma, HR Manager at Infitel, explained the rationale behind having a parrot on the interview panel. He said, “Most of the candidates that we interview have the same skills and potential. So we have to look at factors other than merit to shortlist candidates. That is where the parrot can help. Besides, most candidates come prepared with rehearsed answers. They keep ‘parroting’ the same lines. So it makes sense to have a parrot on the panel.”
“It is a good investment too. We anyway give peanuts to our employees, so might as well give it to the parrot. The parrot does the job and eats the peanuts without complaining,” he reasoned.
When questioned about the quality of candidates selected through this exercise, he said lowering his eyebrows, “Look, there is no guarantee of anything. We pay them to do what we want them to do. They are not expected to think ‘out of the box’; in short we got a parrot to hire more parrots, figuratively speaking.”
This cost effective exercise seems to have caught on with placement agencies as well. “We get thousands of CV’s each day. Who has the time to go through every CV? Besides, more than 75% of what is written in the CV is exaggerated. We have kept 4 parrots to do the job. I must say it is working very well for us,” said Ram Kumar, CEO of a top manpower planning agency.
Some candidates who cleared the interview were happy with the exercise. “I was preparing for this interview for the last two weeks. Usually the questions asked are all the same, and most of them can be found online on forums. I carefully prepared my answers and mugged them up, like I have been doing all through my academic life. All I had to do was say all that I had memorized. I think I managed to impress the parrot with my performance,” said one candidate as he started preparation for the next round.