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Expert help needed: Very strange admissions situation

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Expert help needed: Very strange admissions situation [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2014, 07:54
Hi,
I'm looking to apply for a US or Canadian MBA in the fall of 2015, and I have a VERY strange admissions problem that I just can't wrap my head around.

I'm currently a small business owner since the last almost three years, but previously I had worked with the retail-banking Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) unit of TCS located in Mumbai, Tata Consultancy Services e-Serve (formerly known as Citigroup Global Services), for over over five years. They were a BPO company providing outsourcing solutions to various subsidiaries of Citigroup. This five-year tenure is where I got most of my grooming, and which is the pillar of my resume, and one that I'm sure will make my entry into a good school possible.

My issue is as follows:

Now, the outsourcing companies that are located in India follow hierarchies that are very typical for most Indian organisations. Hence, employees have very specific, standard designations on paper, which are recorded at HR. However, the ever-changing vendor requirements compel each department to create ad-hoc positions to meet said requirements which HR is NOT appraised of.

In the company I worked for, TCS e-Serve, a person's job title (Band 0 -- Customer Service Associate, Band 1 -- Process Associate, Band 2 -- Senior Process Associate etc.) didn't dictate or restrict his job function. Band promotions were given more on the basis of tenure than anything else, where a person would get a band hike every 3 years, with an associated salary hike. Band promotions didn't necessarily have any connection to the actual work he/she did.

For example -- There were people who were at Band 2 (Senior Process Associate), but who handled teams of/trained people who were at higher bands than them. AND, there were people at Bands 3 (Team Leader) & 4 (Assistant Manager) who performed job functions that are normally associated with entry level employees.

UNFORTUNATELY, HR doesn't record all of this out-of-sync information. HR considers your band as your "Job Title" IRRESPECTIVE of your actual job function. Also, HR records your "Job Function" as that that are normally associated with your Band, EVEN if that is not the case.

For example -- HR's records would reveal that a Band 4 employee has "Assistant Manager" as his "Job Function" EVEN if he was doing entry level work. Or, a team leader who was at a Band 2 would still have a "Job Function" as that associated with a slightly-above-entry-level employee, EVEN THOUGH this person was doing the job of a team leader.

Such is my case. On paper, I was a Senior Process Associate (Band 2), but in the department that I worked in, Citimortgage Inc., I was a team leader and also did plenty of training for sales and other job-specific training.

Unfortunately, an old buddy of mine who now works in the company's HR told me a few days ago that HR does not keep track of ones ACTUAL job function. It considers ones "Job Function" to be that which is normally associated with ones band, EVEN if that is not the case in reality. This renders ALL the managerial experience, training experience and other work experience I got, which would clearly help my chances to get into a good business school, as good as flushed down the toilet.

And to make things worse, not long after I quit the company in May 2011, Citimortage Inc. decided to withdraw that unit back to the US (which is what prompted my resignation in the first place), so that unit has been long gone from my ex-company, and most of my co-workers and bosses have either quit or are in other departments.

So I guess my questions are: What should I do here? Should I mention this scenario to the ad-com and actually mention all of my work experience even though HR doesn't keep any record this info? Or should I not mention all my additional work experience considering HR keeps no record of it?

I understand that Kroll, Revera and other background verification companies are very strict about minor discrepancies, so I don't wish to give them any reason to doubt me, even if that means deleting all the important (and admission to a good business school-granting) work experience. :-(

I wish to be 100% ethical here, and I don't want the ad-coms to have even a shadow of a doubt about my credentials. So please advice. Thank you.
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Re: Expert help needed: Very strange admissions situation [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2014, 00:12
Expert's post
knight247 wrote:
Hi,
I'm looking to apply for a US or Canadian MBA in the fall of 2015, and I have a VERY strange admissions problem that I just can't wrap my head around.

I'm currently a small business owner since the last almost three years, but previously I had worked with the retail-banking Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) unit of TCS located in Mumbai, Tata Consultancy Services e-Serve (formerly known as Citigroup Global Services), for over over five years. They were a BPO company providing outsourcing solutions to various subsidiaries of Citigroup. This five-year tenure is where I got most of my grooming, and which is the pillar of my resume, and one that I'm sure will make my entry into a good school possible.

My issue is as follows:

Now, the outsourcing companies that are located in India follow hierarchies that are very typical for most Indian organisations. Hence, employees have very specific, standard designations on paper, which are recorded at HR. However, the ever-changing vendor requirements compel each department to create ad-hoc positions to meet said requirements which HR is NOT appraised of.

In the company I worked for, TCS e-Serve, a person's job title (Band 0 -- Customer Service Associate, Band 1 -- Process Associate, Band 2 -- Senior Process Associate etc.) didn't dictate or restrict his job function. Band promotions were given more on the basis of tenure than anything else, where a person would get a band hike every 3 years, with an associated salary hike. Band promotions didn't necessarily have any connection to the actual work he/she did.

For example -- There were people who were at Band 2 (Senior Process Associate), but who handled teams of/trained people who were at higher bands than them. AND, there were people at Bands 3 (Team Leader) & 4 (Assistant Manager) who performed job functions that are normally associated with entry level employees.

UNFORTUNATELY, HR doesn't record all of this out-of-sync information. HR considers your band as your "Job Title" IRRESPECTIVE of your actual job function. Also, HR records your "Job Function" as that that are normally associated with your Band, EVEN if that is not the case.

For example -- HR's records would reveal that a Band 4 employee has "Assistant Manager" as his "Job Function" EVEN if he was doing entry level work. Or, a team leader who was at a Band 2 would still have a "Job Function" as that associated with a slightly-above-entry-level employee, EVEN THOUGH this person was doing the job of a team leader.

Such is my case. On paper, I was a Senior Process Associate (Band 2), but in the department that I worked in, Citimortgage Inc., I was a team leader and also did plenty of training for sales and other job-specific training.

Unfortunately, an old buddy of mine who now works in the company's HR told me a few days ago that HR does not keep track of ones ACTUAL job function. It considers ones "Job Function" to be that which is normally associated with ones band, EVEN if that is not the case in reality. This renders ALL the managerial experience, training experience and other work experience I got, which would clearly help my chances to get into a good business school, as good as flushed down the toilet.

And to make things worse, not long after I quit the company in May 2011, Citimortage Inc. decided to withdraw that unit back to the US (which is what prompted my resignation in the first place), so that unit has been long gone from my ex-company, and most of my co-workers and bosses have either quit or are in other departments.

So I guess my questions are: What should I do here? Should I mention this scenario to the ad-com and actually mention all of my work experience even though HR doesn't keep any record this info? Or should I not mention all my additional work experience considering HR keeps no record of it?

I understand that Kroll, Revera and other background verification companies are very strict about minor discrepancies, so I don't wish to give them any reason to doubt me, even if that means deleting all the important (and admission to a good business school-granting) work experience. :-(

I wish to be 100% ethical here, and I don't want the ad-coms to have even a shadow of a doubt about my credentials. So please advice. Thank you.


Hey dude,
Thanks for dropping by. I think I answered your post somewhere else, but I couldn't find out where, so let me answer you again.

First and foremost: This is YOUR story to make. The narrative is yours to control. And this is why writing a good application can be soooo strong.

When you apply to Bschool and prepare your resume, basically the rule of thumb is: write your resume int he way that it gives the broadest, deepest, and most impressive picture possible of your work experience. It goes without saying that you should be truthful. But you are not obliged to use, for example the title assigned by HR. You could also use a descriptive title (like Team Leader) where that is more helpful. Writing "Senior Process Associate (Band 2)," as your job title on your resume helps no one - it's not even really clear what that means. Plus it sounds stiff and technical. Instead choose a job title that actually describes what you actually do. It's better for the schools too because then they can get an understanding of what you ACTUALLY do. Make sure you also have all of your "greatest hits" in your resume too.

If you want to get more into detail about exactly what you should write and how, you can always drop a line, but basically: Write the truth, but in the most impressive way possible. Don't be afraid of promoting yourself. That is, after all, one of the main functions of the resume.

Hope this helps dude,
_________________

Jon Frank
Founder, Admissionado

Admissionado.com

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Re: Expert help needed: Very strange admissions situation [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2014, 00:33
Jon, I got your response from the other forum on which I posted this query and thought I'd quote it here and ask you a few questions.

This is what you said there:

JonAdmissionado wrote:
Hello there good sir,
You know, I have good news for you. The rule of thumb for whatever you should write is: Whatever is most effective. I mean it. You know, resumes are an art. They aren't physics formulas. And the best resumes are the ones that present themselves in the best way, that make a cohesive narrative, while containing all of your "Greatest hits" and basically, making you seem as good as you can on paper. That is the art of the resume. Without being untruthful in any way of course.

For example, in your following situation: "On paper, I was a Senior Process Associate (Band 2), but in the department that I worked in, Citimortgage Inc., I was a team leader and also did plenty of training for sales and other job-specific training. "

Okay. The first questions you ask yourself are: What is more important? What is most impressive? What shows more leadership?

And then you CHOOSE to emphasize those things. So here you would DEFINITELY write Team Leader as your title. Why? a) it's more impressive. B) Nobody has any clue whatsoever what Senior Process Assistant Band 2 means c) if you use that wacky title, people with think you are just a super techie who has no people skills.

Your narrative is yours to build (of course within the bounds of truth. Goes without saying)

And I don't usually like plugs, but if you want to see magic done with your resume, try us out:
http://admissionado.com/mba/services-pr ... e-editing/


Best,
JF


Well, Jon, I'd love to tell the admissions committee that I was a Team Leader, as you just recommended, because that's what I actually was, but how will this work with the HR verification?? HR will only tell them that I'm a Band 2 -- Senior Process Associate, so how will they verify all of these additional responsibilities of mine?

My recommendation letters will certainly corroborate that but HR won't, because all that HR has on file for me is my band. How will it work with the HR verification?
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Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 3220
Location: Chicago, IL
Schools: Brown University, Harvard Business School
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Re: Expert help needed: Very strange admissions situation [#permalink] New post 01 Apr 2014, 07:07
Expert's post
knight247 wrote:
Jon, I got your response from the other forum on which I posted this query and thought I'd quote it here and ask you a few questions.

This is what you said there:

JonAdmissionado wrote:
Hello there good sir,
You know, I have good news for you. The rule of thumb for whatever you should write is: Whatever is most effective. I mean it. You know, resumes are an art. They aren't physics formulas. And the best resumes are the ones that present themselves in the best way, that make a cohesive narrative, while containing all of your "Greatest hits" and basically, making you seem as good as you can on paper. That is the art of the resume. Without being untruthful in any way of course.

For example, in your following situation: "On paper, I was a Senior Process Associate (Band 2), but in the department that I worked in, Citimortgage Inc., I was a team leader and also did plenty of training for sales and other job-specific training. "

Okay. The first questions you ask yourself are: What is more important? What is most impressive? What shows more leadership?

And then you CHOOSE to emphasize those things. So here you would DEFINITELY write Team Leader as your title. Why? a) it's more impressive. B) Nobody has any clue whatsoever what Senior Process Assistant Band 2 means c) if you use that wacky title, people with think you are just a super techie who has no people skills.

Your narrative is yours to build (of course within the bounds of truth. Goes without saying)

And I don't usually like plugs, but if you want to see magic done with your resume, try us out:
http://admissionado.com/mba/services-pr ... e-editing/


Best,
JF


Well, Jon, I'd love to tell the admissions committee that I was a Team Leader, as you just recommended, because that's what I actually was, but how will this work with the HR verification?? HR will only tell them that I'm a Band 2 -- Senior Process Associate, so how will they verify all of these additional responsibilities of mine?

My recommendation letters will certainly corroborate that but HR won't, because all that HR has on file for me is my band. How will it work with the HR verification?


Hey there,
Good question, but basically as long as you are telling the truth, it won't matter. Write team leader. Okay, so HR has no clue what you do. But it'll be in your essays and recs, and you will have nothing to worry about.

I know maybe it may seem a bit weird to you, but again your job title is just that, a title. Not a legally binding description of what you do. And I've had hundreds and thousands of clients who have done this. So you have really no occasion for worry. I mean how many people in finance and other industries get a title VP, which means "I was here three or five years" but signifies little else? So again, use this to your advantage.

Hope this helps,
JF
_________________

Jon Frank
Founder, Admissionado

Admissionado.com

If you like the post, give it a KUDOS!

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