Swiggy’s MoonLight Policy In News
- NEW DELHI: The work from home (WFH) operating model has given rise to moonlighting among white-collar professionals in India, which is now leading to compliance issues within companies and has also stirred a debate over whether this is the future of gig economy
- While the idea reflects a practical recognition of the changing nature of white-collar jobs, moonlighting appears to have divided traditional tech companies and new-age ones. Days after Swiggy’s announcement, Wipro chairman Rishad Premji termed the concept as cheating. On Saturday, he tweeted: “There is a lot of chatter about people moonlighting in the tech industry. This is cheating — plain and simple.”
What is MoonLight Policy
- Moonlighting refers to the practice of working a second job outside normal business hours. An employee may work a normal 9-to-5 job as a primary source of income but work nights at a different job in order to earn extra money.
Part-time opportunities or Moonlighting
- Want employees to work additional jobs while others will not care. A July Kotak Institutional Equities survey of 400 people across the IT&ITES space, revealed that 65% knew of people pursuing part-time opportunities or moonlighting while working from home.
- HP experts have attributed moonlighting as one of the factors that make many reluctant to come back to office. 42% of the participants said they would consider changing their jobs or even quitting if they were not allowed to work from home.
When first cases of moonlighting in India came to light
- One of the first cases of moonlighting in India came to light when HIRs tracked multiple active provident fund accounts of a Bengaluru-based person and it was found he was working seven jobs. In another incident, when an IT head at a large Mumbai-based firm refused to attend office despite repeated requests, his juniors raised red flags after they discovered that the official email was being used to send large files to another company. A forensic probe was launched, which showed that he had taken up another job without quitting the IT organization.
Why moonlighting has become a big concern for IT Industries?
- In the last two years, moonlighting has become a big concern in the IT industry due to the loss of skilled employees and reduced productivity levels. A Willis Towers Watson ‘Reimagining Work and Rewards Survey’ revealed that in the past two years, finding and retaining the right talent has become the biggest concern for India Inc. For 78% of corporates, attracting talent is a tough task, while 64% of the companies are finding it challenging to retain employees. The survey concluded that talent challenges are expected to persist across all employee categories in 2022.
Can one get fired because of it?
- HP professionals and legal experts believe that courts have in the past permitted employers to terminate employment if an employee is found to be moonlighting. There is restriction on double employment under the Factories Act. However, that law does not apply to IT companies in some states.
How do they get caught?
- Most of these employees appear to get caught due to carelessness and overconfidence “Some of the basic red flags could be suppressing information about the current employer on social media, or if the same laptop or other organizational tool is used for moonlighting or providing the same bank account even for depositing freelancing money,” Sivarama Krishnan, partner and leader, Cyber Security, PwC India told Times of India.
- It becomes pertinent for employers to take measures for protecting the company’s interest and ensure that employees provide their full time and energy to their current job. One such measure used by employers is the Moonlighting Clause.