Horizon'23 - The Annual HR Conclave

Horizon is the Annual HR conclave organized by the Industry Interaction Committee. This year’s edition was held on 15th October 2023 at Department of Management Studies, IIT-Delhi.

Theme - Revolutionizing HR: Pioneering Strategies for Elevated Employee Engagement and Building Employer Brand

Panelist Details:

Leader Name 
Company Name 
Mr. Debasis Satapathy  NBCC  CGM – HR
Ms. Mita Brahma  NIIT  HR Head
Dr. Yogesh Misra Ph.D  Thomas Assessments Pvt Ltd  Vice President


In today’s rapidly changing business landscape, the role of HR has evolved beyond traditional  administrative functions. It has become a crucial driver for enhancing employee engagement and  creating a strong employer brand, both of which are essential for attracting and retaining top talent.  Through Horizon, the annual HR Conclave of DMS, IIT Delhi, this year, we aim to bring together experts  and thought leaders to share innovative strategies and best practices that will help organizations adapt  to the evolving HR landscape and create a workplace culture that fosters engagement and strengthens  their employer brand, ultimately leading to greater success in the competitive talent market. 

Debasis Satapathy, CGM-HR at NBCC, and Mita Brahma, HR Head at NIIT, along with Yogesh Mishra, Vice  President at Thomas Assessments Pvt Ltd, discussed various aspects of HR in the digital age. Professor  Kanika T. Bhal, a distinguished professor of DMS, IIT Delhi, who moderated the discussion, kicked off the  conversation by addressing the challenges faced by human resources in today’s dynamic landscape. The  debate over offline and online work, the unique mindset of Gen Z, and the cultural shifts triggered by the pandemic were among the key challenges highlighted. 

“People don’t leave jobs; they leave managers” – Dr. Yogesh Mishra, Ph.D. 

Dr. Yogesh Mishra, a distinguished voice in the field, emphasized the changing dynamics of employee  loyalty. He noted that employees no longer stay with an organization until the end of their careers,  pointing out that HR departments now seek individuals who are willing to take ownership and become  brand ambassadors for their companies. Dr. Mishra further discussed the importance of leadership in  employee retention and highlighted the crucial elements that shape an organization’s culture: its  purpose, growth opportunities for employees, and the personal connections forged by managers and  colleagues. He stressed the importance of rewards and recognitions for sustaining employee 

engagement, highlighting the evolution of rewards during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the widespread  use of vouchers as tokens of appreciation. 

“Karna and the Importance of Employee Engagement – Mr. Debasis Satapathy.” 

Mr. Debasis Satapathy explained the concept of employee engagement by drawing a parallel to the  Mahabharata example of Karna, who was disengaged and ultimately met his downfall. He explained that  engaged employees are not only loyal but also psychologically committed to the organization. On the  other hand, actively disengaged employees may be physically present but psychologically absent,  leading to reduced productivity. He emphasized that measuring employee engagement is essential, and  various methods, including Gallup Benchmark questions, were discussed. He further stressed that  maximizing talent utilization is critical, as wasting valuable resources is not an option in today’s volatile  and uncertain business environment. 

“The ‘People First’ Strategy for Organizational Success – Ms. Mita Brahma.” 

Ms. Mita Brahma from NIIT shared the organization’s vision of “People First” and highlighted the  importance of creating an environment that benefits both employees and the organization. She further  explained that, in a remote working world, it is vital to bridge the gap between physical and virtual  connections. She mentioned the challenges of increased resignations, restlessness, and disengagement,  which can be addressed by providing employees with a clear sense of purpose and transparency through  town hall meetings and effective communication. She discussed the significant role technology plays in  HR, enabling more granular and customized approaches to employee engagement. 

Answering students’ questions about the qualities employers are looking for, Dr. Mishra explained the  importance of qualities like attitude, flexibility, and the ability to take risks. In response, Dr. Debasis  Satapathy explained the concept of reverse mentoring through the story of Vidur and Dhritarashtra from Mahabharat, where employees mentor their managers. Dr. Satapathy explained that reverse  mentoring is a way to bridge the generation gap and stimulate collaboration and innovation. Ms. Mita  Brahma, addressing the students’ questions, explained that the differentiators in the digital age include  an organization’s online persona and how remote work affects company values. She stressed that, to  ensure successful remote working, leadership communication is essential. 

In summary, the rich panel discussion during Horizon’23 shed light on pioneering HR strategies for  elevating employee engagement and building a robust employer brand in the face of evolving  challenges. The discussion stressed the necessity for HR professionals to adapt to the digital age,  prioritize employee well-being, and leverage technology to create a more inclusive and engaged  workforce.