This is a follow-up to the post “Cognizant : Raj Mehta’s Dead Wood Implementation – A Real Story“
The transcript of a HR discussion below is to highlight
- that for the companies employees are object to be used and thrown,
- how companies force employees to resign and avoid paying statutory benefits.
Before you read the transcript, my observations
- When I had resigned (on two occasions) in past, the same HR team had begged me to stay and I withdrew my resignation on both occasions. Today my allocation cost has moved up, the project managers are selecting low cost employees over me to meet their profitability margins. Who and for whom such profit margin has been set? Have we become an object to be used and thrown as needed these companies?
- If I have been on the beach for an inordinate amount of time, who is responsible for it? I joined the company and after confirmation, it is the duty of the company to allocate me job and not to force me to resign to avoid statutory benefits.
- The only severance package for me is the 2 months notice period then why Cognizant announced that $36 million has been budgeted for it.
- Cognizant had asked me to resign on 15-March, which I declined, post which they staged all fake interviews, neutral hearing etc to terminate me. (Read Why this is Illegal?)
Background : I am called into a meeting with a senior HR person who has traveled from other city to meet me.
HR: I will like to hear from you about what is going on and what opportunities you may have been considered for
ME: I have applied for all the internal job openings that are available in the system
HR: Did you reach out anyone proactively?
ME: I have contacted all opportunity owners irrespective of the fact I match the job description or not.
HR: When was the last interview you attended?
ME: Last interview only and I was told that I would be underutilized for the role available
HR: I have read all your emails and wanted to let you know that we have run out of all the options in terms of roles and fitments and looks like we have run into a dead-end at this point of time, which my team has already informed you. Have been looking outside Cognizant for opportunities.
HR: What is the response and progress?
ME: Its the same scenario, I am getting roles where I will be underutilized.
HR: Which is why we are saying that we are not able to fit you in any of the profile that we have and we need to close this amicably, good for you and good for us. We will give you two months of notice period to continue to search outside as well as inside, and if anything works out in the two months, anytime you can withdraw your resignation. Have you thought on this line?
ME: Sorry I didn’t get your question.
HR: We have to close this as we can’t have you on bench underutilized. The proposition I have for you is that you submit resignation in the system but continue on our payroll for two months which is our committed notice period, during which if something clicks internally /externally, you are welcome to withdraw your resignation and get allocated. Have you thought on these line.
ME: No I have not and I don’t want to even talk about resignation as it disturbs me. I don’t understand how you say that resigning is good for both Cognizant and me. You can only explain me. I don’t find it good for me to resign.
HR: Resigning is good looking at your ratings history. How it is even helping your career by staying in Cognizant when there is no opportunity for you.
ME: I had resigned in 1998 and in 2012 but that time Cognizant asked me to withdraw my resignation and requested to continue. Now you asking me……. (HR interrupted me)
HR: That was a different time. Now we are asking you to resign as you have been on the bench for an inordinate amount of time. My question to you is based on your own admission that you have not been used to your potential and you have been on bench for almost a year now, where are heading to?
ME: Resignation is quick and dirty solution and it is definitely not good for me and unless I am forced to do it I would not do.
HR: Where is the closure to this. How long this will continue?
The meeting ends and a follow up meeting was set on 29-Aug-18….
HR: So what have decided? Have you made up your mind?
ME: I have not got anything yet.
HR: are you looking out?
HR: why don’t you put down your papers and let’s close this.
ME:if this is the only option offered to me then I don’t have anything to say. This should not be the only option for me
HR: what is the other option
ME: 2 months compensation is not acceptable
HR: it is as per the T&C of the employment. Two months is either ways. Either you serve two months or we are liable for two month notice or we pay. We you are even thinking beyond that.
ME: I am not aware of any termination T&C. Pls show me the document now.
HR: it’s available online on onecognizant.cognizant.com. You should check yourself.
ME: My offer letter doesn’t mention any such T&C.
HR: there is no point challenging that.
ME: if you have any such policy, why are you showing me mercy?
HR: it’s not mercy at all. See I will tell you why I am having this conversation, if you put down your papers and we agree on the last working day two months from now or you take two months of salary you atleast will get a CLEAN exit, you will get service letter, experience certificate, you get credit for all work done. Otherwise we will have to take this through disciplinary action route, which means somebody who is not deployed / is unsuitable for existing roles, on bench for 1.5 years. Ths is HR head offer
ME: at this point of time you can say I am in denial mode, even if there is any such T&C, I am not willing to accept it. I would let go the two months of salary you are offering too.
I would stick to my decision that I told on the 1st day, if I am terminated as per the policy I will accept it.
HR: why? How will it help you?
ME: if I am not agreeing to resign as you are demanding me, you have complete authority to take action and terminate me as per the policy.
HR: of course we do and we do that. It’s not that you are the only individual that we will do.
ME: I will accept that Cognizant terminated me but I will not accept that I resigned because Cognizant HR thinks that I am a liability after 21 years of service, Cognizant being my first job.
HR: termination does not help you, I am just trying to make it more pleasant for us. You will have clean service records. You really want to leave Cognizant after 21 years saying that Cognizant asked you to leave.
ME:I would cherish that Cognizant terminated me because I was not of any use to them.
HR: are you very clear?
HR:if that is the case then we will move on to the next step which is called issuing a showcause notice, which records a lot of fact which you have to respond in writing.
The meeting ends with the HR team serving me the showcause notice. I declined to sign and left the meeting room.
– Fighting Senior Cognizant Employee