Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer

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Recently A group of my Colleagues went on a process Migration to a US State. The tenure of the stay was ranging between 3-4 months and as is usually the norm the funds were given in advance and Bills were later asked for submission. They were told that 80-85% of Bill submission would suffice.

The group had a tricky situation wherein upon every food bill, an element of Gratuity was expected to be left which was at least 10% of the Bill and it went un Accounted for. They emailed the Finance division of my company who reiterated the policy of 80-85% Bill submission.

However, once they were back, the division mentioned change in Policy and wanted 100% submission. As they only had upto 90%, there was a stop payment on Salaries made on the personnel concerned.

Though this is a generic issue this is clearly not the way tenured employees are treated as they spent 8-10 years in the Company. Of the brigade that went to the United States, there was a Supervisor and a Manager as well. Whilst the negotiations are going on at a snail pace, I do believe that the way this situation was handled is not apt at all and the said division should have come up with an alternate plan.

Please Advise in this Regard

From India, Hyderabad
Dear Stevieglee,

Please check my comments in italics:

Recently A group of my Colleagues went on a process Migration to a US State. The tenure of the stay was ranging between 3-4 months and as is usually the norm the funds were given in advance and Bills were later asked for submission. They were told that 80-85% of Bill submission would suffice.

No comments.

The group had a tricky situation wherein upon every food bill, an element of Gratuity was expected to be left which was at least 10% of the Bill and it went un Accounted for. They emailed the Finance division of my company who reiterated the policy of 80-85% Bill submission.

Comments: - Gratuity has nothing to do with outstation allowance. Probably, what you intend to say is tips to the waiters or other service staffs.

However, once they were back, the division mentioned change in Policy and wanted 100% submission. As they only had upto 90%, there was a stop payment on Salaries made on the personnel concerned.

Comments: - Whenever any policy change happens it has to be brought prospectively and not retrospectively. The problem is because of retrospective change. Your HR should have been thoughtful on this count. Probably your HR has taken cue for ex-Finance Minister of India who started levying retrospective corporate tax/income tax on the companies.

Though this is a generic issue this is clearly not the way tenured employees are treated as they spent 8-10 years in the Company. Of the brigade that went to the United States, there was a Supervisor and a Manager as well. Whilst the negotiations are going on at a snail pace, I do believe that the way this situation was handled is not apt at all and the said division should have come up with an alternate plan.

Comments: - [i] This is the typical HR problem. While they merrily go on giving speeches at conferences on leadership, employee engagement, combating recession or on how bountiful energy that they possess, they do not look at the proverbial darkness that exists beneath them. Nothing can be done on this count. Try to raise this issue in your town hall meeting. Secondly, talk to your team and give collective submission to the MD of your company.

Final Comments: - Gentleman, probably your are from IT. Your post manifests flip side of not having labour union. Had there been union, union leaders would have vetted the policy and brought this anomaly to the management's notice. IT professionals treat labour union as anathema. In that case would you mind to pay the price for this anathema? Wait patiently for the positive outcome. After all, positive thinking in this world exists for what? For these situations only!

All the best!

Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
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