Madina left a plum job to start a career consultancy to assist applicants from valley to get jobs in the private sector. Today her consultancy is a hope for thousands of job aspirants. Ibrahim Wani reports.
When she realised that the youth of the valley were finding it difficult to get jobs in the private sector in the state, she began searching for reasons. She soon pinpointed that the greatest reason was the lack of state-centric career consultancy services in the valley. “There were many consultancies operating but none of them were concerned with jobs in the state. Most of them sent candidates outside,” she says.
Madina decided to fill the gap. She left a plum job with an insurance company and started Naukrikhazana. In a short period of time-the consultancy was started in March 2009-Naukrikhazana has placed more than 200 candidates in companies operating in the state. “Now we get more than 300 enquires per day,” says Madina adding that today her consultancy has tie-ups with almost all the major companies operating in the state.
However the going was not easy. “Most of the companies operating in the state had tie-ups with consultancies in Jammu so they did not feel the need to engage a valley based consultancy,” says Madina adding that this proved a major hindrance. She explained to the companies the major disadvantage of valley based candidates who had to apply at the consultancies in Jammu. “A valley based candidate would find it difficult to apply at a consultancy at Jammu. Most of the times the candidates would not even know of the consultancy,” she explained. The initial response from the companies was not positive. But she did not lose hope.
She then started out with tie-ups at local level with the valley based business enterprises. Here she met with a warm response. Soon a constant rush of candidates started visiting the consultancy. She did not charge any consultancy fee from the job aspirants.
Meanwhile she kept on pressing the companies to extend tie-ups. “I would meet the HR executives time and again to explain the need of engaging a valley based consultancy”. Soon her perseverance bore fruit. The companies realised the need of having consultancy services in the valley and tie-ups started coming her way.
However Madina soon faced another problem. At the time of the interview only a fraction of the candidates would turn up. This kept on repeating and “could have hampered the image of the consultancy”.
“Since the application was free many candidates would not take the interview calls seriously”. A nominal application fee was put in place to solve the problem. However the fee would be “refundable if the candidate would not land a job”. The move bore immediate results as only the serious candidates turned up.
Madina soon realised that it was not enough to forward the aspirants to the companies for interview. “The aspirants here did not have proper exposure to corporate culture,” she says. So she started counseling and grooming sessions for the applicants. “On Saturdays all the candidates are counseled to improve their chances of landing a job, ” says Madina. In these sessions the applicants are taught various things which range from resume writing to interview and communications skills.
As the word about the consultancy spread so did the rush of candidates. To keep up with the increased demand Naukrikhazaana has increased its employee strength to eight. Recently it has also diversified into educational consultancy services. She will now also manage the franchise of i360 in Srinagar which is a premier IT staff training solution company with branches all over India.
Madina also feels that people should be apprehensive of the consultancies which guarantee jobs. “no genuine consultancy will offer you a job guarantee. There can only be job assistance”, she says adding that a number of these fake consultancies which offer job guarantees to the applicants have ended up duping the applicants of large amounts of money.
She also has a word of advice for the job applicants. Madina says that a person should be goal oriented to succeed“Decide what you want to do. Know your goals and work to pursue them.”