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My 'Tech-First' Company Is Asking All Of Us To Come To Office And Here Is Why It's Not Okay

( words)
*For representational purpose only.

I rate myself as quite an accommodating person. Usually, the one who adjusts and not much of a controversy lover. So that’s how I am even at my workplace, not much of a rebel and not much of a fight picker. But the recent situation in my office just forced me to write this piece.

So here I am, a frustrated P#@*m’s Software Engineer who is just tired of it’s bullshit. I’d straightaway get to the point and not waste much of everyone’s time here.

The company is forcing its employees to join offices and making us work in unfair situations. If not able to comply, our salaries will be deducted by a 50%. However, even taking the salary cut and choosing WFH is not an option. It is mandatory to report to office within a certain time period. The employees are left with no option but to join. I’ll explain this point in detail later in this article. Hang around with me here.

The workplace environment here is bad, which I soon realised just a month after joining. But the recent pandemic situation brought to light some real issues manifesting here, which I’ll go through chronologically.

It started with [email protected]#*m firing quite a few of its employees just months into the pandemic. But okay, we all get the ‘cost-cutting’ dilemma companies might be facing. But that just happened after the company promised to provide somewhere around 500 crores as donation to help with the pandemic situation. So were they doing it by firing their employees?

Next, all of our remainder leaves were taken from us with the only option of going on a loss-of-pay leave even for a normal sick leave. Also, the encashable leaves, which an employee can take during their notice period was also reduced to zero! If this isn't unfair, then what is?

So, the work from home after that was going smoothly until now. But then, we all received a mail on 23rd August to join offices on 1st sept. This might not be such a hassle for locals (apart from safety concerns), but for non-localities it’s something unfeasible. We all communicated our issues which were of course overlooked. E-passes in most states were available after a waiting period of 15 days. No buses or trains available on a regular basis, mostly after 15-20 days period, or for some places none at all. Many non-localities have vacated their accommodations already, so to come to Delhi and search for a place to stay is unsafe and impractical. No metros were available and it is unsafe to travel in cabs for those who do not own vehicles.

After a lot of fight put up by employees, the company later slyly tried to make some changes which put nothing but more pressure on employees to join. We were provided accommodation for few days, it was not certain if this was paid and was to be shared by people from other states or not. Travel and food was provided as well, but at what cost? By forcibly making the employees to join and risk themselves, all when the work from home scenario was going extremely smooth?

Few people did join on 1st September while others were about to join in the upcoming weeks. Till that time people were looking for accommodations and making arrangements to reach Delhi. Soon we received a notification for all those unable to join and will continue to work from home; their salaries will be deducted by 50%!

Now not everyone is privileged enough to get their salaries deducted, so employees started making arrangements as fast as they could irrespective of the covid danger.
Just one week into opening, one of the employee tested positive- not surprising!

The person had been forced to come to office like the rest of us, had worked along with team members and possibly infected so many others. Even then a mail was received that the office will stay shut for just 2 days and will resume normally after that!

While I was writing this, 4 days after this latest mail, again a notification was received that offices will now remain shut for a few weeks, possibly just September, and re-open after that. The mail was quite short and precise. Is it because the infected employee did transfer the condition to other employees as well?

Now [email protected]#*m thinks that it got itself in the middle of a dirty mess? No information is provided regarding the state of other employees or any reason why the office shut. We know for certain, the company is trying it’s best to conceal certain facts. The only thing that is quite clear is that [email protected]#*m is an extremely self-centered organisation and remains unbothered for it’s employees. You cannot talk to HR and complaint, as they themselves are being controlled by the management.

HR body is just a big fat lie made to sit in [email protected]#*m. The final decision was surely taken not for it’s employees but for the company itself. We’re quite uncertain of what will happen in October.

God save it’s future employees against such toxicity!

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