Thursday, June 20, 2024

No mass layoffs at Flipkart: Raghavan

Flipkart is not among the companies that hire thousands and then lays off people to reduce headcount, said chief people officer Krishna Raghavan.

The e-commerce company with an employee base of over 15,000 said the decision of not giving hikes to senior management will not lead to exits as it comes after a hike and promotion cycle last year, followed by a stock option buyback plan, which will hold many in good stead.

“We don’t hire in thousands and then land up figuring out that we have too many people on board and resort to extreme measures,” Raghavan said in an interview. “We do responsible hiring and there are no mass layoffs happening at Flipkart.”

Unlike many of its peers in the tech and IT services sector, the company insists there are no delays in onboarding freshers from engineering or management schools, and campus hirings are on track, and freshers will join in June. “We are very thoughtful and deliberate on how we do workflows planning in general,” he added.

In recent times, “over-hiring” is being used as a reason for laying off employees across sectors after a year of recruitment frenzy. In November, Flipkart went for an employee stock option (ESOP) buyback plan of $700 million.

It has also decided to give increment to nearly 4000 senior managers to bring in pay parity within the firm, and does not expect this to impact attrition figures as there have been sufficient rewards, merit-based increments and wealth creation opportunities for its workforce.

“In January 2022, we did a one-time increase on salaries off-cycle. We continued pretty much with all the promotions. So, the 3000-4000 people get their promotions , and promotion-linked increments. They get their bonus, they get their new ESOP grants, and there’s a one-time discretionary payout that will happen in the second quarter (by June-end),” he said. “Flipkart is one company in the ecosystem where ESOPs actually turn into liquidation opportunities.” The company is not ruling out more such “liquidation opportunities” for its employees in the future.

“As we expand our business portfolio, and grow in the marketplace, this is a tremendous opportunity and potential for us, and we’ll constantly revisit how we look at increments in the subsequent years. We do have liquidation opportunities that we offer to our employees almost every year,” he added.

The e-commerce major has upped its internal job postings versus hiring from the industry. “In the last couple of years, our internal talent mobility in terms of the number of positions we filled internally versus externally has doubled.”

Cross-functional hirings are becoming prevalent by the day across sectors as it is a cost-efficient model and at the same time offers career-growth and lateral movements to employees for which they might have had to look outside the firm, he added.

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