The IT industry has often been at the forefront in adapting to new and innovative changes taking place in their industry and has many a times been the torchbearer for leading change. However a recent trend in the IT/ITES industry that has caught the fancy of many and has been garnering much publicity is that of Moonlighting.
For people who might not be fully aware of this term, Moonlighting in the IT parlance typically refers to one having a second job in addition to one’s regular employment therefore implying the second work being carried out secretively.
|As an individual, I would say employees should have the integrity and loyalty towards the organisation they work with.
Mr Ravi Chandra
Vizag Head / India Delivery, Tech Mahindra
The debate around moonlighting has cleaved the industry, depicting sharp reactions.
Swiggy, the popular food delivery platform, announced its policy of allowing employees to work on other projects under certain conditions after working hours.
On the other hand Moonlighting made headlines when IT giant Wipro trashed the idea in tech industry and sacked 300 employees calling it cheating – plain and simple.
|It is not ok for employees to indulge in multiple jobs. It is a strict no-no.
Mr Souvik Nandi
Director Operations, Concentrix
Many IT firms in AP have toughened their stand against employees taking a second job after work hours and have made this amply clear to their employees.
‘As an individual, I would say employees should have the integrity and loyalty towards the organisation they work with. From a customer’s point of view as well, some may go finicky if they come to know about multi-jobs ultimately jeopardising the relationship and brand.’ He further adds, ‘40% still work from home at Tech Mahindra. We have a robust background system and well-defined policy’ said Mr Ravi Chandra, Vizag Head / India Delivery, Tech Mahindra speaking to Vizag Industrial Scan.
Concurred Mr Souvik Nandi, Director Operations, Concentrix and said, ‘It is not ok for employees to indulge in multiple jobs. It is a strict no-no. If you are an employee of one company, you enter the organisation with an understanding and contract stating you cannot simultaneously have employment anywhere else’.
|Taking advantage of WFH and working for 2 or more companies as a full-time employee is completely unethical.
Mr Sreedhar Kosaraju
State President ITAAP
ITAAP’s President, Mr Sreedhar Kosaraju too echoed similar sentiments and said that Employees should be transparent about their side hustle or other freelancing work and should make sure that it is not conflicting with the interests of the primary employer.
‘Integrity of work should not be in question. Taking advantage of WFH and working for 2 or more companies as a full-time employee is completely unethical.
With the changing scenario, employers and employees should have a more transparent framework to make it a win-win for both’ said the ITAAP President. However amid the COVID-19 pandemic employees taking up multiple jobs witnessed an upward trend when work from home became the norm. According to a survey of 400 people across IT industries, 65% of the respondents knew of people pursuing part time jobs or moonlighting while working from home. So if this trend is rampant how does an IT company deal with it.
|An individual is entitled to multiple sources of income – that’s not a problem until it starts to impact his commitments.
Mr R L Narayana
Chairman Investment Committee, ITAAP
Mr R L Narayana, Chairman Investment Committee, ITAAP opined that ‘An individual is entitled to multiple source of income – that’s not a problem. Problem arises when it impacts his commitment, delivery, and integrity towards the assignments.’
Some of the IT companies have in fact tweaked their HR policies to become more adaptable to the changing needs of their employees.
|We always encourage our employees to become entrepreneurs themselves and we have a policy for that as well.
Mr Murali Krishna Gannamani
Chairman & MD, Fluentgrid Ltd
‘We always encourage our employees to become entrepreneurs. We have flexible work timings and work environment. As long as our employees deliver their outcomes, we do not have a problem. Currently, 35-40% of our employees are working from home and we have policies for the same’ said Mr Murali Krishna Gannamani, Chairman & MD, Fluentgrid Ltd.
Moonlighting though still remains to be a concern for BPOs as they are still trying to get back their employees to office.
|Moonlighting remains a major concern for BPOs. It is a challenge and we are gradually trying to get back employees to office.
Ms Lakshmi Mukkavilli
MD, Patra India.
As Ms Lakshmi Mukkavilli, MD, Patra India said that ‘We never had the concept of work from home. Today, only 5% of our employees are working from office. It is a challenge and we are gradually trying to get back people to work from office’. She however did state that for companies to adopt this concept, they would need to come up with policies or laws bringing in more transparency, trust and commitment.