Omicron Scare: Indian IT Employees Won’t Return To Office; WFH Will Continue?
It’s been almost two years now that covid-19 disrupted our lives. We have witnessed two waves of the pandemic. The outbreak had a disastrous effect on our economy. But it looks like the tiny but mighty coronavirus is not yet done with humans. It keeps on mutating and forming newer variants of itself. And the latest variant Omicron seems to have spilled water on all the plans made by humans. Earlier in the week, the World Health Organisation (WHO) had flagged risks stemming from the new variant.
Corporate India on High Alert over ‘Omicron’
As the cases of the Omicron variant are being reported in the country Corporate India is on high alert. Organizations across sectors are keeping a watchful eye on developments. Some organizations are even considering pressing a pause button on the next phase of return-to-office plans. Some even have halted their business travel while many companies have stepped up Covid protocols and safety norms.
After experiencing the first two waves many companies are confident about the systems and processes in place to take appropriate, immediate action as needed. Increased vaccination rate throughout the country is also adding to the confidence of these corporate houses.
Companies are postponing their Back-to-Office Plans
Recently, Google announced its decision to push back its January return-to-office plans globally amid growing concerns over Omicron. Vedanta Group is also mulling over thought to postpone its returning to the office.“We are watching the situation–if things get bad, we may put a hold on those plans,” CHRO Madhu Srivastava said.
Panasonic India, which had restarted its offices in full force and resumed business travel has stopped all international trips and is allowing only critical domestic ones.
Shantanu Jha, senior vice president, HR, Cognizant India, emphasized the health concerns of its employees. “The health and safety of our associates is our top priority whether they are working from home or the office,” said Shantanu Jha.
Notably, many companies in sectors such as manufacturing and financial services had started close to full attendance after the second wave receded. However, they all are monitoring the situation closely and will take a call on shifting back to WFH depending on more information on Omicron and fresh government guidelines.