We believe in wellness before business: H Soin, Chief People Officer, Tech Mahindra, on tackling Coronavirus

With coronavirus spreading fast, companies are trying hard to keep employees safe with options like working from home and using tech tools to collaborate. For IT services companies with global operations supporting clients across geographies it’s a daunting task to keep thousands of engineers safe while ensuring business continuity. Harshvendra Soin, Chief People Officer (CPO), Tech Mahindra discusses the measures that the company is taking in wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Edited excerpts:

What alternatives is Tech Mahindra looking at in view of coronavirus and related travel ban etc?
At Tech Mahindra, we strongly believe in “Wellness before Business”, which is why amidst the current Coronavirus outbreak, our focus is on ensuring the well-being of all our employees and partner ecosystem. We are working towards ensuring that our employees are not just aware but also educated on preventive measures that can be taken. We have issued a detailed employee advisory and are undertaking various preventive measures. We have a panel of doctors on standby across all locations who are educating employees, sharing information, do’s and don’ts etc. We have also imposed restrictions on domestic and international travel with immediate effect. All our office locations and guest houses are also being stocked with adequate supplies of sanitizers, emergency medicines, food ration etc. We are also taking preventive and proactive fumigation and sanitization of our offices/premises.

What impact do you see?

The pandemic, as categorized by WHO (World Health Organization) may affect the global economy due to effect on macro-economic factors like supply chain, production, oil prices, currency and interest rate fluctuations.

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We are continuously monitoring the situation at our end and are taking necessary preventive measures for risk mitigation. The situation as of now is volatile and constantly changing. The next phase of this outbreak is still unknown, so it’s best to monitor and be prepared. We are staying positive and have requested our employees to refrain from rumours.

Will it lead to remote working? Already, what percentage of the work was happening remotely?

The ‘workplace of future’ is ever-evolving and gradually shifting to accommodate new ideas, technology and working arrangements. Initiatives like work from home, flexible schedules and extensive use of technologies has further pushed forward remote working.

In case of COVID-19 symptoms, we have advised employees to avail work from home. We have also postponed all our internal events which required large gatherings and advised everyone to adequately leverage technologies like – Tele Presence and Video Conferencing.



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