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12 Hour Shifting for an Outsourcing Business
Human Resources » HR Outsourcing

Chrm Message From: eChoice Training Total Posts: 28 Join Date: 14/04/2007
Rank: Executive Post Date: 11/02/2009 08:35:13 Points: 140 Location: United States

Hi All,

I am working for a full service outsourcing organisation. Many of my colleagues in the Leadeship team are from Manufacturing background. They keep on demanding for making our 8 hour shift to 12 hour shift for the speific work convenience. I am fighting
saying that it is against the law of the land.

But now they claim to be have done in companies which are highly renowned for their ethical standards. Is it possible, other than for processes which are continuous in nature.

They take the names of Automobile companies which are basically having assembly lines.

Can someone throw some light into this please.


eChoice Training

Chrm Message From: rkuppili Total Posts: 121 Join Date: 14/04/2007  
Rank: Leader Post Date: 16/06/2009 07:24:04 Points: 605 Location: United States

The working hours on a given day are not to exceed more than 8 hours and 48 hours a week. Besides 8-working hours a day also include breaks. The companies can't ask an employee to work more than 48 hrs in week and more than eight hrs per day.

The BPO firms work all seven days of the week. On an average, BPO employees put in 40 hours every week. However, now with revised working hours, an employee would have to put in 50 hours a week.

The Indian arm of the Union for Information & Technology Enabled Services (UNITES) is planning to file a public interest litigation (PIL) against the alleged “arbitrary policy’ of many Indian and multinational IT/ITeS firms in India who have, for the past two months, reportedly been enforcing longer working hours that violate the daily eight-hour working mandate of the Indian Factories Act, 1948.

UNITES, the country’s first union in the IT-BPO sector, is affiliated to the Indian National Trade Union Congress (Intuc). It claims to have around 10% of the total IT-BPO workforce of 2 million as members, and said the numbers have been dramatically rising over the last two months on the back of lay-offs in the sector. The union is also part of Union Network International (UNI), which has over 16 million workers in 13 different sectors from 163 countries.

IT firms, on their part, insist that the Act is not being violated since IT workers have to work for 48 hours a week — eight hours daily for six days. However, since most IT firms have a five-day working week, they work longer hours, hence the misconception.

But some IT-BPO employees and UNITES are not buying the story. “The labour law in India allows an eight-hour working day, whereas in most IT companies in India people are involuntarily working for over 12 hours daily,” R Karthik Shekhar, UNITES’ secretary general for India told Business Standard.

He added that the increase of daily working hours from eight to almost 10 hours by Indian and multinational companies officially is “a double standard by the IT firms, who, on the one hand are firing people saying they are not getting enough work, and on the other hand, forcing employees to work more since they are getting more work”.

He said UNITES has requested industry body Nasscom to step in to clarify the stance.
The IT sector in India was once the torchbearer of many best HR practices, including flexi-office hours.

However, the situation has changed on the back of a slowing economy. Global IT services firm Accenture, for instance, is reportedly planning to increase working hours by almost an hour with effect from January 1 next year. Infosys, India’s second-largest IT exporter, too, has asked its employees' to strictly abide by the duty hours that the company has fixed as 9.15 hours a day on all working days. Wipro also has stipulated 9.5 hours working hours a day, and is becoming much stricter in terms of timing.

On condition of anonymity, a team leader working with vCustomer, said: “In call centres people are used to long working hours. During peak season (December-January), they work even 14 hours a day. But now due to the ongoing crisis, expectation levels are very high. Performance is being monitored frequently.”

Shekhar alleges that most IT firms do not display a “standing order” (regarding the eight-hour duty), which is certified by the labour department, on a notice board at the entrance of every firm. Instead, they have the order posted on the company’s Intranet.

“I believe stressing on increased input is always a mistake — the industry needs to focus on more productivity and value creation on the output side,” said Ganesh Natarajan, Chairman, Nasscom, when contacted. He, however, did not comment on whether Nasscom would be working on fixing a limit on daily working hours for companies.

Hope this will throw some light on your doubts...

Cheers!!! Radhika

Chrm Message From: rajmandial Total Posts: 1 Join Date: 14/04/2007  
Rank: Beginner Post Date: 13/08/2009 09:14:27 Points: 5 Location: United States
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