Work From Home to Continue: The work from home regime is not here to go away any time soon as Covid-19 continues to grip the world by mutating each time things seem to be better. Just when the Delta strain of coronavirus, which had induced a massive and deadly second wave of pandemic in India, seemed to go off, a new variant of the virus called omicron was detected. The Omicron variant reportedly spreads much faster than its predecessor, and has already started making its mark in the country, which is recording increased number of cases at present. In this scenario, returning to normal life seems somewhat impossible now.
The same goes for the job sector, especially IT companies. IT firms like TCS, Infosys and HCL Technologies had previously expressed their intention to call employees back to their offices as the second wave was in the process of subsiding. But that seems to have bleak chances now. The health ministry has also advised offices to not call back employees and implement the work from home regime as much as possible.
Companies, especially in the IT sector, have already expressed their motive to continue the work from home routine.
According to a report by the Economic Times, senior executives have said that they are now being cautious about their back to office plans amid virus threat. Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), India’s largest IT major in terms of workforce, has said that less than 10 per cent of the company’s employees are working from their offices currently. Any plans for a full fledged return to office will be a calibrated move, the company was quoted as saying by Economic Times.
Infosys, the Bengaluru-based IT major, has said that it has “taken a cautious approach” keeping in mind the “changing health situation”, as per the report. The N.R. Narayana Murthy-owned company had previously said it would bring back its employees to office.
HCL Technologies, which had also planned a similar move, seemed to be cautious now. The company said it “will continue to monitor the emergence and impact of Covid-19 variants which could limit the movement of employees”, according to the report by ET. The company added that it intends to follow the current hybrid model that has been in motion now, where a tenth of its workforce is working from office.
The statements by the companies mentioned in the ET report comes in sharp contrast to what they had announced previously, when the second wave of Covid-19 was on its way to subside — that is during the announcement during the second quarter results in October. At the time, several IT companies had expressed their intention to gradually call back employees to their designated worksites by December 2021 or January 2022, and also wanted to follow the hybrid model.
Right now, physical attendance is on a voluntary basis and we have encouraged managers to take the lead. We haven’t forced anybody to attend daily or to relocate,” Richard Lobo, executive vice president and HR head at Infosys, was quoted as saying by ET.
TCS had in November said it would call back its employees by November. “In view of the new Covid-19 variant, we continue to monitor the external environment carefully,” the company however said in a revised statement, as per the report by Economic Times.