Sandeep Kumar (fourth from left) interned at very famous IRCTC this summer, and shares an interesting story of interning with this mini-ratna PSU. Sandeep is an MBA student at IIM Ranchi. Read on to discover more about his internship.
It was the day when I was in one of the class session of performance management system, when one of a member from placement committee informed me by calling me out of the class, that I got selected for the internship program of IRCTC. With me, there were 3 more students from my class who also got selected.
I am a fresher with computer science background. Computer science is synonymous with b.tech, that’s why I didn’t mention b.tech in the first place. So basically it was my first job. Since IRCTC is a Mini-Ratna PSU, it doesn’t have the policy for a stipend. Therefore, I worked there without any monetary facility. But I was happy even without stipend because the location for the internship was Delhi Corporate Office and my home is also in Delhi. And the office was merely at a distance of half an hour from my house. So, I didn’t have to worry about the accommodation and food services which would have given me a heart attack if I had to pay for that in a different city of India.
I reached Delhi 2 days before the joining date i.e. 2nd of April, 2014. On the day of joining, I wore formal shirt pant with which I am not at all comfortable, as I wear jeans and t-shirts on a regular basis. I bought formal shoes also after a long time. All of my selected friends also got settled in Delhi at different places. I reached office by enjoying a very smooth ride of Delhi Metro. And by smooth I mean, it was smooth for the metro not for me, as it was the office hour and from my Delhi experience I know Laxmi Nagar metro station is the most crowded metro station after Rajiv Chowk metro station. So I reached statesman house building, 11th floor. We coordinated with each other on Whatsapp group which we created for the purpose of communication between us. At the reception area, we all signed the internship contract which mentioned the tenure of the internship, our work domain i.e. HRD and no stipend policy, very clearly.
Frankly speaking, I did not have any idea what was going to happen to me and how am I going to perform in the company. As I stepped into the office premises I experienced for the first time, what I have seen in movies and in my dreams only. I saw the work area divided into different divisions of finance, catering, HR, law, accounts etc. There were spacious lavish cabins with big chairs in it. Boardrooms with big round table and chairs surrounding them. People were busy in doing work in their work cabin. We walked through the different division and reached DGM, HRD office. We got to know that DGM, HRD will be our mentor during the internship period. We interacted with him and he addressed us very frankly and clearly that nobody in the organization will teach us anything, it all depends on us what and how much we want to learn here in this company. We did not have any particular place to sit and work. And our mentor asked us to come up with different suggestions on which topic we want to do the internship project.
My mentor was very happy with me during the first interaction, so in starting days he allocated me different tasks of the company. In the first week of the internship, he gave me a task to make an employee handbook which would consist of all the monetary compensation policies and different allowances which are offered to the regular employees of IRCTC. To accomplish this task I studied different policies files by contacting different employees from different divisions in the office. In this way, I understood almost all the policies and got acquainted with different employees of the company.
As I was doing work in a well-settled organization environment for the first time I was very happy and I loved doing work continuously during the office hours. I have seen, people usually don’t want to do work but I wanted to work. I got engaged in doing almost all type of the works in the HR department right from handling medical claims, lease agreement claims, noting to making proposals for the addition of hospitals in the panel list of hospitals, interview processes at a different level (from Chef de Party to IT vacancies) etc. He delegated me different tasks like charge-sheet case, tender handling of security and housekeeping at various point in time during the internship tenure. I understood the importance of time management because each task which I got were time bounded and sometimes I got different tasks at the same time. At those times, it was very much important for me to manage my time and give preferences to different tasks so that I deliver the results as per their expectations. And every time I tried to deliver my best in a different and unique way.
I learnt to think in simple and straightforward manner. There is no point in complicating things. Common sense (which is not common these days) is a very essential element which everyone should possess in the organization. In my understanding, common sense is being in the same mood as situation demands. I have always tried to ask relevant questions which is related to the problem and which derives the relevant solutions to the problem. The organization is managed by different important functions and all the functions are in coordination with each other. It is therefore very important to think in simple and relevant terms so that every function can understand your solutions.
If somebody asks me which is the most valuable learning I have taken from there I will say “Teamwork”. There is a tremendous energy in synergy. Apart from my internship project i.e. analysis of performance management system, I worked on different projects in cooperation with my mentor and my classmates. And I realized that any big job can be accomplished through synergy and cooperation. All it needs is proper division and delegation of work according to the capability/interest and the start of the work itself. Half of the task is done when it gets started only. And with a positive mindset we can achieve any milestone in our lives.
I found HR function of IRCTC to be very attractive and well established and also the flexibility to amend the policies through proposals with their proper communication channels.
If Sandeep‘s experience motivates you, you can apply to similar meaningful HR internships and give a boost to your career.
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