Womenize! – Inspiring Stories is our weekly series featuring inspirational women from games and tech. For this edition we talked to Priya Raphel, Director, HR Business Partner at Zynga. She gives us insights into the planning of employee growth and impactful HR initiatives. Read more about Priya in this interview:
What do you love most about working in the Human Resources field?

I am really passionate about connecting with people and being in HR gives me an opportunity to be impactful. It challenges me every day, but knowing that I make a difference in the “professional” lives of people and contribute to business success is what keeps me going.

I enjoy working closely with leadership and managers to support their needs. Being part of an employee’s growth is simultaneously a humbling and uplifting experience. The human resources job function also allows me the opportunity to mold the culture of the organization into what employees consider a great place to work.

Are there similarities between HR in the games environment and in non-gaming tech branches?

The roles and responsibilities of HR across both fields are fairly similar. While there are similarities, it is usually the people and culture which make the difference and hence the projects or initiatives that we drive need to be in alignment to the specific needs of the audience. This ensures that the initiatives are impactful. 

What I love about the gaming industry is that this is where tech meets creativity. While creativity exists in both fields, the gaming industry provides an opportunity to work with a varied talent pool which involves artists, designers, producers, product managers and engineers and it is truly amazing to see how all of these functions come together to make games that connect with millions of people around the world. The environment and culture is fun, creative, innovative, and trustworthy. 

In your current role as Director, HRBP at Zynga – how can your day to day work be described?

Connecting with leaders, teams and employees is the core of my work. Apart from that I lead HR operations, compensation, benefits and compliances for India. In my role, I am able to provide guidance on a range of HR issues and influence new (and improved) ways of enhancing organizational operations. This involves focusing on building high performance teams that are operating with a great level of efficiency, while ensuring that employee experience is never affected negatively. 

I work in partnership with Leaders on strategizing employee growth, talent planning & understanding training needs. This allows me to roadmap key deliverables and support the achievement of business goals. By conducting regular employee connects meetings, I get a pulse of the organization, understand what is going well and what can be improved. This facilitates building themes and being able to address issues/concerns if any and also plan necessary contingencies well in advance. 

Just as importantly, I act as an advocate of the company’s values and culture to create a best in class work environment.

Thanks for this interview, Priya!

Priya’s links: LinkedIn

Womenize! – Inspiring Stories Feature by Sophie Brugmann