How ITC Infotech has Restructured C&B in Hybrid Work Model
Multiple surveys, research, poll studies, and POV documents highlight that employers are heading toward a hybrid work model where legions of employees will rotate in and out of offices configured for shared spaces while finding ways to maintain a distinct company culture.
Policies are a crucial aspect to adopt people practices wherein time and effort are being invested to align to customer excellence, employee centricity, and operational excellence.
In context to Total Rewards perspective, the attention is to focus on objective ways/outcome/metrics approach through performance management to minimize a natural bias of what (or whom) you can see over what you can’t. To develop an objective way to design measurable performance objectives that allow for flexibility, minimizing dependencies in how those outcomes are achieved, sensitizing employees and managers to adopt this behavior requires us to stay invested in this change to be consistent and sustainable.
To augment the business reality of work from home/anywhere, the priority has been digitizing compensation/benefits management and making investments in tools/processes/systems and app-based methods to drive awareness, including digital assistants for query management during the implementation of the increment and performance payout cycles.
Benefits design/inclusion of alternate treatments and options to include families and providing that as a choice/awareness is another thing. The main challenge is that partnerships need to work based on what they promise. We are learning through experiences in real-time. Taking corrective actions on employee experiences is becoming a crucial element in evaluating the efficacy of partner promises and what they can deliver in the digital space, e.g. closure on reimbursement, response/turnaround time/similarity of experiences across cities.
Response time and validation of whether the processes and policies are working is critical and we experienced during ex-gratia payments to address exigencies, short-term bridge loans, and during bolt-ons to enhance insurance/top-up facilities. The key was to make employees and managers assimilate these changes and find ways to have these conversations as part of their regular project conversations. Simplifying reimbursement processes, moving towards accepting digital documents as proof of reference build predictability in employees.
In the hybrid work model, building on employee experience towards the culture of recognition has been another area of work. We are augmenting persona-based elements, driving transparency and visibility/common virtual platforms to interact and drive the right behaviors through rewards.
Navigating life situations through the wellbeing lens has taken center stage from the Total Rewards perspective. It includes:
- Physical wellbeing
- Emotional and Mental Wellbeing
- Financial Well Being
After more than fourteen months of work from home, employees adopt a pattern of work and life balance that works at an individual level. However, the fragmentation of expectations, ability to cope with the challenges that come with this integration with a wider implication on the social and economic ecosystem is an unchartered path.
- At ITC Infotech, we are dealing with unique situations regularly and experimenting with options that will allow us to cluster certain themes. It’s a work in progress – and we see the constant need to stay agile. While the participation in wellbeing interventions at an organization level remains at 35 – 40%, we observe a welcome change in employees being open to talking about mental wellbeing, wanting to know how to operate in an environment of psychological safety.
- What is also happening implicitly, is learning and reflection through own experiences. We are observing managers reaching out and being part of learning and behavioral learning interventions to know how to work around these situations through self and then enable teams. It is an important driver of culture change that is more democratic and inclusive. Leaders will emerge at all levels and will become potential role models for peers and teams. Our attempt is to identify such influencers because that defines an organization’s network of change drivers. That’s where the people practice, watch over by the HR team, and connect with employees become important. Talent review interventions, rewards mechanisms, criteria to choose critical talent and differentiated rewards must come together.
- At ITC Infotech, we have also invested in building learning agility through structured upskilling/re-skilling/certifications/coaching interventions. Working with businesses to constantly rein in on skill/learning priorities and building predictability on performance based on optimal mapping on deployability is being monitored closely.
- Based on the skilling/re-skilling requirements of the business, we have focused on smoothening the reimbursement process. Keeping in mind our goal of Employee Centricity, in a recent exercise, we did a campaign to increase awareness on the certification policy amongst the employees and help them benefit from this policy by getting upskilled in various skills as per their Individual Development Plans (IDPs). As part of this exercise, the certification process was streamlined to incorporate definitive timelines for reimbursement. FAQs and scenario-based communication channels have been created to address employee queries and challenges to improve adoption and encourage employees to invest in their careers.
Co-Author: Gopal Krishna Swamy, VP – Corporate HR, ITC Infotech