Last week we asked readers whether companies should use a long notice period to retain employees. The responses are a mixed bag, with some in favour of the requirement and others against it. Edited excerpts:

2-3-month notice justified

A two- or three-month notice period could not only help retention but also instil discipline in the transfer of responsibilities to the successor. Companies should avoid immediate release or adjustment of leave/ salary with the notice period requirement.

— Ravi B.S., Nagarjuna Oil Corporation

1-month notice sufficient

The notice period on the one hand ensures that the employee finishes pending projects and participates in knowledge transfer to the successor. On the other, it helps the organisation resolve HR issues with the employee. An exit interview taken early on in the notice period would help ascertain the genuine reasons for the employee's departure. The notice period must be limited to one month, causing minimum inconvenience to either side.

— Sandhya Vasudev, Fatima Degree College, Hubli

Poor reflection on HR

An HR policy that interferes with labour mobility projects HRD in a bad light among employees — existing and potential.

The introduction of even a single restriction could fuel speculation about more unwelcome changes in the pipeline. The negative impact of such regressive reform could, in fact, trigger a spate of exits.A company should be a great place to work in. That would in the long run control attrition much better than any confining measures.

— Jayendra Sahu, Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, New Delhi 

No one is ‘indispensible'

If companies use the notice period to retain employees, the latter would get the feeling that they are ‘indispensable' and start dictating terms to the former. This would have a telling effect on productivity and also send a wrong message to other employees. It must be remembered that ‘the world is big'.

 — S. Ramakrishnasayee, BHEL Township, Ranipet 

3-months is fair transition 

The normal requirement of a three-month notice period should suit both the employee and the employer well. The management should focus on retaining experienced employees who would be difficult to replace, while HR should go into the reasons for the resignation by conducting exit interviews.

— Vedula Krishna, Axis Bank, Visakhapatnam

No more than 30-45 days

Insisting on a three-month notice period is not fair to the employee as the new employer may not agree to a long waiting period. Further, the employee would find it difficult to focus on the current job. Hence, the notice period should not exceed 30 to 45 days.

— S. Rajagopalan, Sundaram Finance Ltd

Should vary with industry

The nature of the job and the industry should determine the length of the notice period. Where companies can get candidates with similar skill sets easily, a longer notice period is not necessary. But in sectors where immediate replacement is hard to come by, three months' notice is fair. For example, the education sector, where faculty would not be released during the term.

— Dr S.N. Soundara Rajan, Saveetha School of Management, Chennai

 

(This article was published on May 11, 2012)
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