Hyderabad

With WFH, new dynamics at play in IT sector

A software company employee working from home during the lockdown.

A software company employee working from home during the lockdown.  

Now, even US clients may allow our staff to work off site, says ex-chief of Hyderabad Software Enterprises Association

The work-from-home mode adopted by IT and ITeS companies since the imposition of the lockdown may bring in some new dimensions and dynamics into play, transforming the way the sector had been functioning all these years.

Techies, who have been working from home for more than 70 days now without any disruption in business operations despite initial hiccups like power outage and bandwidth issues, have adapted themselves to the changed work mode.

Even after relaxation in guidelines by the Central government giving exemption to IT companies to bring all their workforce to office, the managements took a rain check on that given the rising number of positive cases in the city. In the last one week, new cases were being reported in three digit numbers in the State with the bulk of them in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation area and the surrounding districts.

In the meantime, many IT companies and MNCs have conducted internal surveys to know the views of their employees to resume work from offices and it was found that only 6% to 10% of employees were in favour of coming to offices. The rest of employees preferred to continue to work from home for some more weeks to a few months.

Hyderabad Software Enterprises Association (HYSEA) representatives said that the long period of WFH made some companies, particularly start-ups and small and medium enterprises, rethink their mode of functioning and cancel lease of their office premises. For any IT company, 30% of their cost is establishment/office space. “The thinking is that money saved on rent can be used to give more salary to skilled people. Surely, new dynamics are developing, which can change the IT sector forever,” they said.

Even young employees from outside the State and working in the city who normally go for shared accommodation, are not renewing their rental lease. “With our company deciding to continue the WFH mode indefinitely, we are going back to our home States and work from home rather than staying here,” said a young IT company employee.

Former president of the HYSEA Murali Bollu said the changing dynamics might have a domino effect on other companies in the next few months. Companies that saved money on office rent can quote lower rates for contracts to their clients. “The WFH mode is prevalent in IT companies in the US too. So far, we used to get H1 visa for our employees to work on site on client premises. Now, with every one working from home, location of work becomes immaterial. Thus, it can be easy to persuade the US client to let our employees work off site by aligning to their timings,” he said. Thanks to the new hardware/software tools like Krisp, which cancels noise in the background, working from home was becoming comfortable, he said.

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Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 4:50:22 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/with-wfh-new-dynamics-at-play-in-it-sector/article31828380.ece

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