IT firms’ back-to-office plans may change amid fresh COVID fears

Image credit: CNBC

Due to concerns about a potential new COVID epidemic following an increase in cases in China, information technology (IT) organisations in India are evaluating their current return-to-office preparations.

According to the Union Health Ministry, the following 40 days will be critical for the nation because January could see an increase in COVID-19 infections.

As the government has streamlined the work-from-home (WFH) regulations in the Special Economic Zones (SEZs), businesses have been testing a variety of hybrid work models. The government recently announced changes to the SEZ regulations that, under certain restrictions, allow IT/ITeS units in SEZs to allow 100% WFH through December 31, 2023. In the past, WFH was permitted for up to one year in a SEZ unit and could be increased to 50% of the total workforce.

One of the few IT businesses, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), gave its staff a clear order to return to the office. Managers are absolutely required to keep a roster, and it has been instructed that staff members return to the office three times every week. Some of these current regulations may alter if the nation is struck by another COVID wave.

Others, like Wipro, had a return-to-office strategy that was more flexible and hybrid in nature. Employees in top positions were “encouraged” to come into the office three times a week from offices in India during the quarter from October to December.

Nearly 95% of employees at Chennai-based SaaS business have worked from offices over the past 12 months. According to HR specialists, India Inc. is preparing for the rise in COVID instances by closely monitoring the situation and urging executives travelling outside of or within India to adhere to the safety precautions.

They are urging every employee to get the required vaccinations. The businesses are better prepared to handle it now that they have dealt with the pandemic for the past two years. If a fourth COVID wave strikes India, businesses may carry on operating in a hybrid environment while adhering to the appropriate standards and maintaining the crucial office healthcare infrastructure. According to CEO and managing director of CIEL HR Services, Aditya Narayan Mishra, “the flow of work is not anticipated to be disturbed.”

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