- “I, IT employee named Shyam Sundar”
- Why IT Companies Allergic to Unions?
- The Dilemma in Taking up the Legal Fight when you are terminated.
- Impact of Holiday Shutdown policy on IT Employees
- IT Companies turning into Unorganized sector – What is in for employees?
- Forced leave without pay – What is in it for IT Employees?
- Layoff Legal Rules – How IT companies ignore Land of Law with their corporate power?
- Got HR call? – Take this quiz and prepare yourself for the interview
- Submitting self resignation is like committing suicide
- How IT companies violate IDA while retrenching employees?
We conducted a quiz as part of last part and categorized people into 3 different categories. Before analyzing these 3 different types of people, I want to make -people understand what they are going to face in HR interview.
HR role in the exit process interview is like a hang man’s role. HR officers are also our fellow employees and they are doing these interviews as part of their job. Their role is to make employees resign on their own. They will provide offers, talk nicely, threaten, blackmail and do all sort of gimmicks to make employee resign.
Why company wants to make employee resign on their own? Why they offer some additional benefits for employee who accept to resign on their own? The answer to this is retrenching employee by giving termination letter is illegal and if employee challenges the termination, it becomes setback for the company.
HR role is to make employee commit suicide on their own. If employee commits suicide, it is very difficult to prove the crime. I have seen many employees who fall prey to HR tactics, resign their job emotionally. Later they did not get new jobs and then they approach labour office. It is punishable even if a person is forced to commit suicide but the problem here is it is difficult to prove that the employer only forced employee to commit suicide. I have seen replies given by employer for such employees in labour office. It will be like this:
- Employee submitted resignation on their own. Our company doesn’t have any policy of forcing employees to submit self-resignation
- We have provided full and final settlement. We deposited settlement money to the employee account. The employee has already taken this money provided
- If employee signed any document as part of separation process, they will show that as additional proof.
- The position of the employee is already filled and it is not possible for the company to reinstate.
- If employee wants, they can apply again in our job portal and if any new openings come, we will consider whether the employee is suitable for that role
As I mentioned, employee submitting self-resignation is like committing suicide. If your HR officer is asking you to commit suicide, what you will do? That is the first question you need to answer yourself before attending HR interview.
Now we will see about the first set of people who scored less than 10 marks in the quiz conducted.
These people are usually young, worked less number of years in the organization and it will be easy for them to find a new job. It will be very difficult for these employees to take legal fight for a long time. These employees account for more than 60% of the entire IT population. But chances of these employees getting targeted for layoffs will be very less. As these employees are young, the company had spent on their skill upgradation recently and definitely organization don’t want these employees to leave the organization. It will be less than 10% chance for these employees to get targeted for layoff even as they form 60% population of IT employees.
Notwithstanding the above if they are targetted, the employee in this category needs to analyze the following things now:
- They first try to find out why they are targeted. It will be definitely not good sign for employees at young age to get targeted. There is a high chance that these employees have performance issues. They should focus on correcting their side problems first.
- They bargain for additional time, money, notice period as part of HR interview.
I really don’t have anything more to say for the first category of people. It is practically difficult for these people to take legal route unless they have desire to fight legal. If not, they buy time and focus on upgrading their skill, apply for new jobs and try to get new jobs at the earliest. That’s the maximum they can do.
Now we will analyze the second category of people who got score between 11-18 marks.
This category of people form 30% of IT population. HR targets more than 70% of these people only for layoffs even though they form only 30% of population.
The solution for these people is the decision they have to take of whether to accept suicide or get killed by the management. They have to take firm decision before making to HR interview. I already quoted Tholar Palanichamy’s story of workers getting reinstated earlier inthis series.
I want to add one more interesting story that happened in LIC. This story shows how appeal by group of employees under industrial dispute act is so powerful in bringing justice for them. The company has recruited many employees in 1985 and they did not make many of them permanent. LIC later sacked these employees and there will be around 8000 employees who got sacked like this across India. Workers based out of Chennai formed a group with the filed the case under IDA. The Government later formed a tribunal called Central government Industrial Tribunal (CGIT) grouping all the affected employees in LIC and took all cases throughout India and passed award in 2001to absorb then in ID 27 of 1991.
LIC went to Delhi HC and challenged the award of CGIT. The affected employees fought the battle as a group with the help of All India National Life Insurance Employee Federation. Delhi High court order in the favor of employee and LIC appealed the judgement in Supreme court. The verdict in Supreme court again came in the favor of employees. It orders LIC to reinstate LIC with full back wages. On review petition the same bench of Supreme Court reduced back wages to 50%. This amount to whooping 3543 crores to be paid by LIC for the affected employees. At current stage, batch of employees are absorbed back in LIC without back wages and rest of employees are still taking the fight for payment of back wages.
Story of LIC has the following important lesson for IT employees:
- Industrial dispute act is so powerful and if employees fought with confidence, definitely there is high chance of victory from employee side. The time took for justice is very long in LIC which is nearly 25 years but still employees got the justice
- If dispute is appealed in various courts also the base remedy obtained in the base court will not be changed
- This shows the importance of unionization. It will be very difficult to fight for long period individually. The collaboration of workers by forming union make this success story and it this story has a clear message for the IT workers
LIC is celebrating its 65th Nationalization day on Sep 1st 2020. LIC worker union is one of the very powerful unions in India and our NDLF has strong presence in LIC worker union. Our treasurer of NDLF central wing Mr Vijaykumar is long term worker of LIC and very active member of LIC worker union is point worthy to add here. His guidance place vital role in our various legal battles of our IT wing trade union employees
IT employees in category 2 should take the lesson from LIC workers. They have 2 choices of either accept the self-resignation by bargaining for additional benefits or they should not accept self-resignation at any cost and make company to terminate them. If employee decides to take legal fight, wise decision is to accept termination letter from the company.
What is the advantage an employee gets if they choose the option to accept termination?
- If many employees refuse to accept self-resignation, it will be practically difficult for the company to issue termination letter to all. Terminating employee is like killing a person. If employer killed employee, it is easy to challenge the crime than in case of self-suicide. Company will be left with no option other than withdrawing the threat.
- I was targeted for self-resignation in the year 2017. I took a firm decision even if company cut my neck, I will not submit my self-resignation. I am with my job for nearly 3.5 years. I got termination now and I am 100% confident, I will fight easily compared to people who submitted self-resignation
- Company if forced to give termination letter, they have to quote reason for termination. It will be very easy for employee to get reinstated if terminated reason is not valid
Termination letter from the company is like giving self-acceptance notice from the company. For example, if employee is terminated for the reason of being in bench for 3 months. Company provided termination letter with reason as employee being in bench. As company does not have certified standing order, court will check if company can terminate based on employee being in bench. As per standing order, company cannot able to terminate employee for being in bench. This clause of explanation given by company is not accepted and employee can be reinstated easily. But in case of self-resignation, first we need to proof that employee is forced to resign first and then only termination will be challenged
We will now see the third type of people. There will be only 10% people in this category. Lower number of people in this category is companies usually don’t allow employees to survive for longer period. These category employees if they accept self-resignation, it will be really a blunder. As they are experienced, their severance owned by the employer is high. They should decide to refuse resignation and should not fall into the trap of HR officer tactics. They should force employer to issue termination letter.
The decision what I mentioned here needs to be taken well before the HR interview. The change will be brought only when all employees refuse to accept self-resignation. If everybody takes clear decision, automatically change will come in IT industry. It will be very difficult to issue termination letter for more than 1% employees for employers. If they issue termination letter for 10000 employees and even if 1000 taken the case to media or to court, it will become very big setback for the companies.
I suggest IT employees to take the termination letter from the company happily. When I received my termination letter, I asked Kasirajan who is our union member to create meme of Vadivelu who is famous comedian in Tamilnadu in the movie Thalainagaram. That meme states I received termination letter from the company and I am going to labour court, court, court.
Now people will ask the question on what I have to do if I get termination letter. The various queries which comes in the employee’s mind is listed below:
- I am manager and I lead a team of 30 people. I heard Industrial dispute act is not applicable for manager roles. If this is the case, what I have do?
- I draw a salary of more than 18 lakhs? I heard people drawing more salary will not be categorized as workman. If this is the case, what I have do?
- How I will obtain legal remedy?
- How unions will help me in this due-process?
- How much time and cost to fight legally?
- If I get termination letter, will I get another job in different company
We will try to find answer to all the questions in the coming parts
- Shyam Sundar