Coronavirus: IT Firms Ask Clients Abroad To Allow Staff To Work From Home

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Many information technology (IT) services firms have started negotiating with clients abroad to allow employees deployed on their projects in India to work-from-home (WFH), in the wake of the lockdown of the country to check the spread of Covid-19.

“The firms are engaged in negotiation with clients for allowing WFH for more projects. As an interim measure, there will be a hybrid approach and whatever processes can be migrated to WFH, those will move in due process of time,” said Sanchit Vir Gogia, chief analyst at Greyhound Research. “Processes like financial accounting can be allowed to be done through WFH. However, wherever personal identifiable information is involved, this will be still done in office.”

“With most nations struggling to contain the Covid-19 spread, clients in the US and Europe are empathetic towards the request. Hopefully, something favourable will come out soon,” said Gogia.

[Business Standard]

Here’s a detailed quote from Sanchit Vir Gogia on this topic:

Such extraordinary times require extraordinary measures and all companies have a moral obligation to treat their employees well and not add any undue pressure. In such uncertain times, empathy isn’t a matter of choice and honchos must treat everyone else the same way they would like to be treated.

Having said that, with little or no experience in managing such situations, confusions are natural, but then, one must err on the side of caution. In the current state of affairs, clients and other stakeholders will understand delays and other slips in delivery and business objectives must take a back seat.

Important to remember when it’s all over, current and future employees, vendors and clients will measure these companies on the compassion they offered during such trying times.

Having said that, it’s wrong to expect companies to be “fully ready” to tackle pandemics of such complexity and scale. Hence, we ought to get real about expectations from the companies as well.

The fact is, IT services companies deal with large scale, complex assignments, and processes that are governed strictly by compliance and regulations. Enabling such processes for WFH not only needs time and client approvals, but also significant investments.

Employees also have an obligation to cooperate with their companies while they can make suitable arrangements.

Bottom line being, we are all in this together and need to empathize collectively and work hand-in-hand to tide over such difficult times.


Sanchit Vir Gogia: Sanchit is the Chief Analyst, Founder & CEO of Greyhound Research, a Global, Award-Winning, Technology & Innovation Research & Advisory firm. To read more about him, click here.

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