Rishi Agrawal, CEO of TeamLease RegTech, emphasized that IT companies hold the authority to relocate employees as per business needs. He clarified that assuring permanent placement at a single location is not feasible for any company. This clarification followed allegations by the IT employees’ union, NITES, against Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) for transferring over 2,000 employees without adequate notice or discussion.
Agrawal highlighted that the employment terms between employers and employees are governed by the Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act of 1946. He noted that often, employees overlook this Act, which forms the basis for terms and conditions. Offer and appointment letters generally encapsulate these conditions, adhering to the Act’s guidelines. Organizations usually follow a standardized standing order or create their own based on business needs and labour laws.
Regarding employee resistance to location changes within India, Agrawal suggested that if employees are enthusiastic about working from on-site locations, they should be open to relocating within the country. He pointed out the challenge arising because IT firms are urging employees to shift locations while transitioning from remote work to office setups. He noted that currently, many employees prefer working from offices near their hometowns due to convenience. However, relocating to larger cities would pose challenges, involving longer commutes and increased living expenses, especially for those hired during the pandemic.
Commenting on IT companies delaying the onboarding of new recruits, Agrawal mentioned that such delays during economic slowdowns are not unprecedented. He cited instances from 2001 and 2007-08 where renowned companies did not honour their offer letters to IIM students, clarifying that campus hiring often suffers during economic downturns due to the need for extensive training for fresh recruits.
In a nutshell, Rishi Agrawal’s insights shed light on the intricacies within IT firms’ employee relocation policies. The balance between business needs and employee preferences, influenced by labour laws, remains a focal point. These discussions underscore the challenges faced amid shifting work landscapes and economic slowdowns in the tech industry.