WFH drives home the message for IT companies

TE Raja Simhan Chennai | Updated on April 28, 2020 Published on April 27, 2020

WFH will help in attracting talent in areas such as product engineering and product management, among others   -  REUTERS

Could become major business strategy, post Covid, to reduce cost, attract talent and boost productivity

The work from home (WFH) culture was introduced by the IT sector. However, it never practised it on a large scale.

But the Covid-19 outbreak and subsequent lockdown have forced IT players to adopt it across the organisation and now the sector is seeing immense benefits from it

Lakhs of software professionals are working from home efficiently to service clients globally. With employee productivity improving 10-15 per cent, post lockdown IT companies are warming up to include WFH as a major business strategy in reducing cost, improving productivity and attracting next-gen talent.

Hybrid models

WFH is a beautiful thing that has happened for the IT industry. People are working more, than in the offices, said Arun Jain, CMD, Intellect Design Arena Ltd. Throughput has increased by nearly 15 per cent. “WFH will be the new normal in the coming months and years. We need to balance face-to-face meeting with WFH,” he added.

This four-week experience on WFH has changed the mindset of employees, with productivity increasing by 10-15 per cent in this period, said Nagaraj Mylandla, CMD of FSS Ltd, a Chennai-based payment solutions provider employing nearly 2,500 people. WFH will help in attracting next-gen talent in areas like product engineering, product management, mobility skill set and new domains like SMEs, he added.

Experts are indicating that intermittent lockouts are expected for 12-18 months before the Covid-19 crisis blows over. A minimum of 25 per cent of the FSS staff will do WFH on a continuous basis by rotation for some time, he said.

Agreeing with Mylandla, HR Srinivasan, MD of Take Solutions, said WFH will lead to flexible engagement models. Companies may need only 20 or 25 per cent full-time employees. The rest can be on ‘Uber’ mode. Next-gen folks look at diversity of experience compared to single-company engagement.. This may be an inflexion point, he added.

Post lockdown, Take Solutions will consider ‘hybrid’ models that will address both cost and safety. “But we will need more rugged and enhanced cyber security measures and better domestic bandwidth availability,” he added.

Call for caution

WFH in its current form has definitely provided a spike in overall productivity levels of employees in IT and IT-enabled businesses. However, it could be a tad too early to declare it as a norm or as a repeatable trend, said Kamal Karanth, Co-Founder, Xpheno, a specialist staffing company. For an industry like IT where large-scale projects are known to suffer an average of 15-30 product and sprint backlog, the current productivity has only potentially helped a catch-up, he added.

Also, WFH is more of a remedial magic pill for the current situation and less of an alternate equilibrium for the industry. The longevity of WFH and its qualification as a solution will have to weather a lot of headwinds under normal industry conditions, he said.

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

Published on April 27, 2020
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor