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Ecom Express to create 30,000 temporary jobs ahead of festive sales to address rise in online orders

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NEW DELHI: Logistics solutions provider Ecom Express is planning to create 30,000 seasonal roles across its operations over the next few weeks as it gears up to cater to heightened demand from e-commerce clients during the festive season.

The company, which had a workforce of about 23,000 in the pre-COVID-19 times, has hired 7,500 people in the last few months to address the increase in online orders during and after the lockdown as people turned to e-commerce to order grocery, medicines and other items.

“The pandemic has catapulted the e-commerce industry to a different league. Our e-commerce customers have very aggressive plans for the festive season and we want to be sure to be able to meet their demands. We have started hiring, a process that will continue till about October 10, and we expect to add 30,000 seasonal roles ahead of the festive season,” Ecom Express Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resource Officer Saurabh Deep Singla told PTI.

In the beginning of August, the company’s workforce stood at 30,500.

“Last year, we had hired about 20,000 people before the festive season. While these are temporary roles, about one-third get permanent as we continue to see an increase in orders post the festive season as well,” he said.

E-commerce companies see a large chunk of their business coming in during the festive sales and they make significant investments ahead of time to ramp up their capacity to be able to handle the spike in orders.

Walmart-owned Flipkart had recently said it has onboarded more than 50,000 kirana shops to strengthen its supply chain and delivery capabilities, while Amazon India announced addition of five sort centres (Visakhapatnam, Farukhnagar, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Ahmedabad) and expansion of eight such existing facilities in the country to strengthen its capacity ahead of the festive season.

In 2019, these two players had announced creation of over 1.4 lakh temporary jobs across supply chain, last-mile connectivity and customer support in preparation for their festive sales.

Singla noted that Ecom Express’ hiring will focus not only on metros and tier I cities but also on tier II and beyond as the company makes deliveries to the remotest parts of the country.

He added that a large chunk of those employed would be freshers, and that the company is looking at hiring locals in various markets given their understanding of the local geography.

Singla said the company has already seen a 2X growth in deliveries and the festive season will further add to the volume.

He added that the people being hired – depending on the roles they are employed for – are provided training across areas like handling of packages and customer experience.

“Given the pandemic and need for social distancing, we are calling in smaller batches, we are using a lot of digital tools. We want to ensure our staff is well-trained and geared up to meet the increase in demand this festive season,” he said.

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ESIC: Govt may retrospectively relax conditions for unemployment benefits under Employees’ State Insurance

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The labour ministry has proposed to provide 50 per cent average per day earnings of the subscriber during four contributory periods in the past two years for 90 days of unemployment, as against 25 per cent provided earlier.

Synopsis

The labour ministry has moved a proposal to amend the conditions under the Atal Beemit Vyakti Kalyan Yojana from March, when the government imposed a nationwide lockdown, which will be taken up by the Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) board on Thursday.

New Delhi: The government is likely to retrospectively relax conditions for unemployment benefits under the Employees’ State Insurance, which saw zero contribution from eight million subscribers in April and May.The labour ministry has moved a proposal to amend the conditions under the Atal Beemit Vyakti Kalyan Yojana from March, when the government imposed a nationwide lockdown, which will be taken up by the Employees’ State Insurance

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EPFO records 6.55 lakh net new enrolments in June from 1.72 lakh during May 2020

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NEW DELHI: The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) saw a robust rebound in net new subscribers with addition of 655,000 subscribers in June as industries and services resumed operations after two months of lockdown. Barely 20,000 and 172,000 subscribers were added to the EPFO in April and May respectively, resulting in net additions of about 847,000 in the first quarter of this financial year.

“The month of June has seen speedy recovery with addition of 6.55 lakh net subscribers registering a remarkable 280% month on month growth,” the EPFO said in a statement on Thursday. “The subscriber base growth is on account of increased number of new subscribers, lower exits and higher rejoining by exited members.”

New subscribers increased about 64% to 498,000 in June from 303,000 in May while exits from EPFO subscriber base declined nearly 33% to 296,000 in June from 445,000 in May. The EPFO saw net addition of 1.2 million subscribers in June this year while 2019-20 saw one million new subscribers on average every month.

EPFO

Even the number of members who exited and then rejoined increased 44% in June from May, with more subscribers choosing to retain membership by transferring funds rather than opting for final settlement, said the EPFO. The data comprises all the new members who joined during the month and whose contribution was received.

The EPFO payroll data showed the enrolment of female workers went up to 106,059 in June from 37,085 in April in absolute terms, even though the overall female participation in the workforce remained low.

However, the highest jump in formal employment creation was in the expert service category which predominantly consist of manpower agencies, private security agencies and small contractors.

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Hike to spend up to Rs 40,000 per employee to facilitate work from home throughout 2020

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New Delhi: Mobile messaging platform Hike on Thursday said all its employees will work from home throughout this year and the company will spend up to Rs 40,000 per staffer to help them create a comfortable workspace at their home.

The company, however, has kept its office open for employees who want to access special technologies available within the premise for their work, it said.

Prioritising employee safety and well-being amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the company said it has adopted “remote-first approach for the rest of 2020.”

Backed by global investors including SoftBank, Tiger Global, Tencent, Foxconn and Bharti Enterprises, Hike has over 160 employees at present.

The company, in a statement, said that “valuing employee wellbeing over everything else, Hike’s move to a remote-first culture would make working remotely their default modus operandi.”

However, for those looking to come to the office, it will remain an option with strict guidelines to ensure social distancing and sanitation.

Hike has that it will spend up to Rs 40,000 per employee to help them create a workspace at home.

“Hike would be delivering an ergonomic office chair and a brand new compact office table to its employees residing in Delhi NCR.

“For employees presently outside of Delhi NCR Hike has announced a reimbursement of up to Rs 10,000 for the purchase of their own chair and table to set up their workstation at home,” the statement said.

Hike would also be supporting its employees for any internet and IT accessories requirement.

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