Meet Ritjana Caveli, an accomplished CEO and Co-founder of ERC International – an Executive Search Consultancy dedicated to providing exceptional Human Resource Services, including Recruitment, HR, Diversity & Inclusion, and Nationalisation. With 16 years of experience in Emerging Markets, Equity, and Education, Ritjana has made significant contributions to the industry and has a strong track record of executing investments and restructuring businesses across the GCC and Global Emerging Markets.
Having worked for top investment funds such as Aberdeen Asset Management, Masdar, and Dubai Investment Group, Ritjana’s corporate experience has equipped her with a wealth of knowledge and expertise. She has also been a keynote speaker at various forums in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Bahrain, Dubai, and Saudi Arabia, where she has shared her insights and experience.
She also works closely with the nationalization programs in the GCC, particularly Emiratisation, where she has been instrumental in empowering the local workforce to bring positive change to their countries.
Ritjana holds a degree from the prestigious London School of Economics and has lived in different parts of the world, which has given her a unique perspective and a deep appreciation for culture and history. Her biggest passion when she’s not working is traveling and exploring new cultures.
Establishing the Company
Ritjana established ERC in 2016 with a small team in Dubai. At first, ERC started as an Emiratization boutique search firm, which later got involved in Saudization and from their Ritjana helped it diversify its services in recruitment and executive search services servicing clients in Asia, the Middle East, and East Europe with an angle of D&I and focus in bridging the gap and creating more opportunities for minorities and women.
As the CEO and Co-founder of the company, Ritjana now aspires to have teams across Asia, Europe, and Africa, enabling ERC to stay close to its clients. This international presence will enhance ERC’s ability to serve its existing clients, spanning 17 different geographies, and infuse an international flavor into its operations. By strategically positioning teams across different continents, Ritjana aims to strengthen ERC’s customer relationships, understand local nuances, and provide tailored solutions that align with its client’s specific needs and cultural contexts. This expansion plan reflects Ritjana’s commitment to delivering exceptional service while fostering meaningful connections with clients worldwide.
“When we started off, just like with every new business, the challenge was building a strong rapport with clients and earning their trust. However, for us as a team, we saw challenges as opportunities and were able to overcome them together united as a team. Setting up this business as someone who didn’t come from the background wasn’t an easy ride. However, as an entrepreneur, you learn that there is no Plan B; you have to keep on pushing and delivering upon your commitments.”– remembers Ritjana.
ERC International sets itself apart from other recruitment companies through its distinctive End-to-End Account Management approach. The company strongly emphasizes developing an in-depth understanding of market sectors, taking it a step further by integrating diversity into its services. ERC fully acknowledges the significance of diversity across nationality, gender, minority representation, and sexual orientation. By embracing and celebrating diversity, ERC crafts customized talent solutions for organizations and corporations operating in diverse borders and markets. This inclusive approach enables ERC to access exceptional talent from around the globe and offers equal opportunities to top talents, irrespective of their geographical location.
Synchronizing with Recent Developments
Ritjana places great importance on staying competitive in today’s fast-paced and ever-changing environment. She and her team participate in webinars, conferences, and strategy meetings to better understand their clients’ talent strategies. They then take this information back to their drawing board to determine if any internal operational or delivery processes need to be changed or adjusted to deliver better outcomes for ERC’s clients. To aid in their efforts, Ritjana and her team use AI-driven tools in sourcing and research, along with various techniques to expedite their research skills, as part of ERC’s brand promise of delivering within 48 hours.
ERC International stands out in the market for several key reasons. Firstly, the company is known for its resilience and resourcefulness, always finding innovative solutions. Secondly, it prioritizes transparency in client relationships, fostering trust and open communication. Another distinguishing factor is ERC’s commitment to fast service delivery, addressing the common stigma associated with recruitment companies. ERC has built a strong reputation for fulfilling commitments promptly.
Ritjana believes one of ERC’s key strengths lies in its multicultural team across five countries. This diverse composition provides the company with a unique advantage. It grants the company much-needed access to a wide range of talent pools and deep cultural understanding, enabling it to offer comprehensive solutions to clients that go beyond recruitment. The ultimate goal for ERC International is to establish long-term partnerships with their clients, acting as trusted business advisors rather than simply a talent placement agency. This holistic approach involves going above and beyond to provide value-added services and strategic support to clients, driving their success.
By embodying resilience, transparency, and swift service delivery, combined with a multicultural team and a commitment to comprehensive client solutions, ERC International has carved its place in the market as a trusted partner and valuable resource for businesses seeking exceptional talent and strategic guidance.
“In the last 3 years, we have been closely involved and supporting the ever-growing startup ecosystem in the Middle East by supporting their teams to grow with tech talents, programmers, data scientists, CTOs, etc. We are proud to partner with some of our clients and see their growth become our growth,”- Ritjana.
On Women Entrepreneurs
Ritjana is deeply passionate about advocating for women in entrepreneurial roles. She firmly believes that the increasing representation of women as entrepreneurs has significantly impacted business and economic growth within the country. Women-owned businesses have a vital role in society, not only by generating employment opportunities but also by driving demographic shifts and serving as a source of inspiration for future generations of female founders. Ritjana recognizes the UAE’s remarkable progress in promoting women’s entrepreneurship, showcasing the breakthroughs made by women in overcoming barriers and achieving success. As a woman, she takes immense pride in witnessing the strides women have taken on their entrepreneurial journeys. However, she also acknowledges that there is still work to achieve complete equality and empowerment.