Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Jhuma Tiwade
Manager- Human Resources
Ashwini Mhapankar
Hr Professional
Ashutosh Thakre
Hr Professional
SAIBHAKTA
Retired From Air India
Dbpawar
Service
Suraj Biswal
Hr Officer
+3 Others

Dear All,
I am planning to make a change in company policy of my company. We are basically observing this issues from few months. Female employees who goes for a Marriage Leave or Maternity Leave takes the benefit on such leaves from company and later they resume the duties serves company for one or two months and leaves the organisation.
As per labour laws the compulsory maternity benefits we have to give to the employees and marriage is also a genuine reason for which we have to give some leave benefits to employees.
But after taking such benefits and finishing the formalities of working for one month and leaving the organisation is very unprofessional. I am planning to make some changes in policy due to this.
I shall need suggestions from Cite HR team members that what changes we can make in policy considering the labour law mandatory policies.
Regards,
Ashwini Mhapankar.
9th September 2015 From India, Mumbai
Dear Ashwini,

Is you company covered under Factory Act or Shops and Establishment Act? I recommend you providing leave to the employees that satisfies either of the two laws of the state in which your company belongs.

There is nothing like "Marriage Leave". It appears that your company might have introduced this leave as welfare measure. For marriage purposes, let all employees, men or women, accumulate their leave and avail it of. For extra requirement if any, they may take "Leave Without Pay" (LWP).

Women employees could be quitting their employment after marriage for the reasons like displacement, increase in the distance to commute to workplace etc.

As far as maternity leave is concerned, you do not have much control over it. You need to abide with either ESI Act or MBA of your state. Nevertheless, your problem is that women employees quit employment after availing of maternity leave. They could be doing this to take post-natal care of their baby. For this, think whether they can be given LWP for the six months. Once the child is year old they can very well join the organisation. However, again it bogs down to total strength of employees in your company.

A few women take break after maternity a few do not take. The choice varies from person to person. A few are ambitious, a few are not. A few attend duties because of monetary reasons. A few do not have anyone to look after the kid. Someone's husband earns sufficient money or are from well-to-do family and for them break of 2-3 years does not matter. Therefore, it will be difficult to generalise on this count. Best suggestions will come women employees as to how to tackle this problem! Therefore, you may have brainstorming session with them!

Thanks,

Dinesh Divekar


9th September 2015 From India, Bangalore
#Anonymous
Dear Sir,
My company is a private limited Urban Infrastructure company comes under shop and establishment act.
We do not provide any extra benefits of marriage leave this will be deducted from their paid leave only or will be unpaid if no leave in balance. As you said in case of maternity leave we cant do anything but after marriage three female employees left company for better prospects.
I was planning to introduce a policy stating who ever is going for marriage leave we will ask them to avail it from there paid leave but 50 % of the salary of that particular period will be kept on hold and it will be paid after one year of resuming the duties.
Please suggest if this can be done.
9th September 2015 From India, Mumbai
Dear Ashwini,
You cannot withhold anybodies salary. What I recommend is to talk to the newly weds/new moms about their future plans and you shall get an idea as to if they are comfortable with their jobs post marriage/maternity, any support they need from organization, looking for higher salaries due to increase in expenses etc. The data shall help to derive the stability report for these employees. Please understand marriage and motherhood comes with additional responsibility and change of mindset. Something which was ok earlier may not be now. Be a catalyst in bridging the gap.
I was offered a two hour relaxation before and after maternity and it helped a lot as I started working when my son was only 3 months old.
I would like to quote one recommendation by one of my mentor " Work on the soft(mindset) part of HR and not the hardware(Processes) of HR"
Hope this helps :)
9th September 2015 From India, Mumbai
#Anonymous
Yes Sir.. Very True..
The same thing I had tried to explain to management but they are not ready for it. They just want a change in employee policy where they should continue with the organisation for at least one year after coming back for any of the said leave for which they want either to hold the employee salary o to get it written from employees to continue with the company.
9th September 2015 From India, Mumbai
One cannot impose such conditions. Whether management wants it or not,law of the land has to be taken into a/c while making any changes.
9th September 2015 From India, Pune
Infosys had a major issue in one their appraisals when they tried a continuity bond post appraisal. You need to apprise your management about the pitfalls. Rest is not in your hands, right? Lest they know that they were made aware of the repercussion they can decide what they want.
9th September 2015 From India, Mumbai
Dear Ashwini,
The problem faced by your company is common among the corporates. Many women employees go on maternity leaves and then attach their pending leaves to it. Some of them even do not come to office back. Just send their resignation by mail and move away. As per the compliance of MBA you cannot get away with that. To overcome this issue employer required to create the bonding among the employees.
It cannot happened on immediate basis but you have to take measures that will develop culture and values that will help employees to be retained with organization. Also you can ask your employees to resign before going on such leaves with assurance of giving back them job whenever they want to return back. Here it is very important that you must absorb them whenever they want to come back irrespective of the vacancy. At least, this can help you get away with extra burden of cost when they are on leave.
Regards,
Deepak Pawar
9th September 2015 From India, Mumbai
Dear Deepak,
Taking a resignation before going on leave is not an legal way. Its like asking an employee before his major happiness, to forgo of his livelyhood... Also the law does not support it. Its like creating different rules for employees, which is against the equality which we promise in the organisation. Will the HR also ask an male employee to resign if he is going on an marriage leave? if the answer is no... then we cannot create and promote such environment.
Regards,
Ashutosh Thakre
9th September 2015 From India, Mumbai
Dear Ashwini,

In addition to my last post, let me add my second comment.

If women employees are quitting employment after their wedding or maternity then it goes on to show that they are not necessarily attached to the organisation. Women quit because for them it is "one of the jobs" and similar jobs are available in the job market. What women staff show is their continuance commitment and not the affective commitment.

There are cases wherein spinsters select their match based on their career aspirations. Occasionally, the brand value of their organisation is so high that it matters lot for them to stay in the company. Against this backdrop, what your organisation needs to do is to roll out employee engagement programme. This programme will improve engagement of employees of all hues and not necessarily of spinsters or pregnant women. If you withdraw few benefits of women employees here and there then you may save some funds but the underlying problem of mental disengagement will remain.

Do you plan employees' career? Do you help employees to design their career plan? If not then start doing that. When the career path is laid, women folks might take halt somewhere but will not choose the new path itself.

All the best!

Dinesh Divekar
9th September 2015 From India, Bangalore
Dear Dineshji, Loved the word affective commitment. It really stresses the point to it finality. Regards, Ashutosh Thakre
10th September 2015 From India, Mumbai
Make your company a place to work in and grow-career,knowledge and money wise(all round growth).
Then very few employees would like to quit.
Tweaking employment rules to avoid people availing maternity benefits and then leaving will not help.
No employee will leave a company which is desirable and a happy place to work.
10th September 2015 From India, Pune
#Anonymous
I faced a similar problem in one of previous company. It was in terms of maternity leave. I was a HR Manager then. The top management, including the business heads literally arm twisted me to do things which were not in line with the Maternity benefit act. I got a legal opinion and passed it on to them and asked them for further guidance. They never reverted back. The issue was never raised again.

Similar thing happened for privilege leave. It is the duty of the management to allow annual leave. There used to be a mad rush towards new year time or during May, when summer holidays for kids used to start. The management wanted me to issue a circular stating that annual leave will not be allowed during New year or in the month to of May.

I came up with an alternative suggestion. Instead of depriving the leave, I came up with a departmental leave plan for availing annual leave. Each department was provided with a chart with the name of its employees. They had to mark the days of annual leave they would avail during the year. The department head would endorse and approve the leave chart. The HOD took the responsibility. And this has become a ritual till date. A few people who reschedule their leave, will have to swap those days with anyone who is willing. This has now become into a good planner for Employees to book their flight tickets and hotel bookings well in advance and avail of all major discounts. Emergency leaves were allowed on special or critical occasions. And what we found was that spinsters would hardly avail the annual leave. They saved it up to either encash it or avail it during their wedding. But, trying to enforce a bond of say, working for a year etc, is violative of the Indian laws and the company could attract penal provisions, if the circular reaches appropriate authorities.

I would suggest you to kindly get a legal opinion from a lawyer and give the opinion to the management. You can tell them that there seems to be a legal glitch and it's better to get a legal view before issuing the circular and the management themselves will either get it or will refer you to their lawyer.
11th September 2015 From Indonesia, Jakarta
#Anonymous
Dear Ashwini,
You may try /think to set up a creche facility within the office premises as a part of the policy decision. I believe it will help you to retain your woman staffs even after their marriage when they will see the facility available for them.
11th September 2015 From India, Kolkata
As far as the Indian culture, which is still a Man based culture, such type of activities are obvious, now due to western effect and through different types of women empowerment the culture has been changed drastically, but still the culture need to be matured enough, which will give the equal decision making power to women also as per to Man.

In the present scenario, as above we should go through the brainstorming session in the organization with majority of women employees, no doubt the women has to bear more responsibility after marriage and maternity. and leaves are obvious, but it can be reduced if organization also take a part in helping them to balance their personal as well as the organizational responsibility. if they could able to match up the gap between the prior and after the marriage or maternity repercussions sure they will not quit the job.

The process needs defining the problems behind and noting down through past experiences, analyzing it, and plan to fill the gaps you can also take the feedback from your existing women employees to chalk out the plan.
11th September 2015 From India, Bhubaneswar
Dear Ashwini,
I have worked in a central PSU for more than three decades and seen many a women employees going on maternity leave , extending it thereafter by their accumulated leave or leave without pay.But seldom did any of them resign.However times have changed and private and public sector are two different stories ! My suggestion is, why not tie-up with a creche in the locality where the new mothers can keep their babies ? As an incentive the company may share a part of the expense.If their are three/four such ladies in office you may very well start a creche in the office premises under a trained person.
11th September 2015 From India, New Delhi
Maternity Benefits Act is indeed a welfare law which is required in India.
Now many companies are trying to give more facilities,longer leave to female employees to ensure better child care.
These two links are interesting;
Companies and maternity | Business Standard Editorials
Paid maternity leave: a working plan for mums - ET Blogs
The problem area in India is the unorganised sector which literally has no such social protection benefiting lady workers.
11th September 2015 From India, Pune
Dear Ashwini

I discovered this discussion quite late but I have dealt with these queries for my clients so I think I can add some value to this discussion

Some of the participants have given very good suggestions on how to improve the overall work atmosphere in your organization and make it more career friendly. Things like tieup with crèches near workplace,work from home options, part time options, lateral positions within organizations need to be explored.

One point that you have misunderstood is the difference between maternity leave policy and Resignation /Exit policy.

Maternity Policy is a walfare policy that is absolutely needed in this country and is something that you need to implement for your employees .

But if an employee is leaving the organization without fulfilling the due Resignation/Exit policies and procedures .In other words without fulfilling the notice period then it amounts to breach of contract and you can take necessary action against them.

Leaving an organization without serving a notice period causes considerable financial loses to an organization and it is breach of contract between employee and employer and if an employee breaches this contract then you are within your legal right to initiate appropriate action.

Now what is the appropriate action ,That your management can decide.

So my suggestion to you is to make a Robust Exit Policy which protects the interests of your Organization and Minimizes Financial Losses
14th September 2015 From India, Pune
Dear Ashwini,
Further to my previous post I would like to add some thing more. We all know so many policies about employee development /welfare etc. Now my question is why setting up a creche will not be a part of so called welfare or employee development policy. You may find a sports room or a refreshment room in the offices where there is hardly any activity but when it is a question of a creche you will find people are not able to digest. You will find people are more concerned about the financial loses of a company but never bothered about the loss of Human resources. You will find people to suggest more tight exit policy( again in the name of policy) but not ready to implement the policy which is existing i.e. employee welfare. I think if you really want to reduce the female staffs turnover in your organization you need to think positive instead of be more robust.
14th September 2015 From India, Kolkata
Dear Ashwini

I think some of the participants have not understood your question and some of the posts correctly and hence are forming an opinion that this is a query about Employee engagement Vs Financial health of the organization.

Your Querry was very clear you wanted suggestions on how your company can reduce Human resource Loss and Financial loss arising due to a certain condition.

Some participants like Nathro and Mr Divakar have given very good employee engagement & Welfare suggestions.

Employee Engagement activities are important aspect of employee welfare.They help in the overall health in the organization and every organization must implement it effectively.

Some participants have misunderstood suggestions on reducing Human resource Loss(Manpower loss) and Financial loss as being Anti Employee engagement.

These are 2 separate things . An HR has to be concerned about the Employee Engagement as much as about Manpower & Financial losses to their organization. Every concerned HR has to think of ways in reducing the Manpower Loss & Financial Loss along with Employee Engagement.

It is not one Vs the other.

Any suggestion that improves the Financial and HR Health of the organization need not be viewed as Anti Employee Welfare.Hence having a Robust Policy which could reduce manpower loss & financial loss need to mean being Anti Employee.

So pls explore all options like Work from home,part time,lateral Shifts, Chreche Facility etc.. along with having effective exist policies
15th September 2015 From India, Pune
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