Hi All,

I am a female, I joined my current company about 2 years ago agreeing to work in 24 hour rotational shifts. I was told by the HR that I may have to work with a team of only male employees at night as they did not have any female employees in the team at that time. I agreed to it thinking I will be safe with a team. However, later a few changes happened and I was asked to work in Night shifts only with one other male team member, the rest of the office being empty of employees in the night. I did that for 2-3 months insisting that I can't do it much longer as it is not a comfortable condition to work in. I was then put in the day shift.

Now again I am being forced to do a night shift with only one other male team member in the whole office. There will also be times when I have to work alone in the whole office. There is only one security guard who stand outside the premises and come for checking once in an hour. We are also not provided cab pick up and drop.

It is a very uncomfortable situation to work in. Moreover, our office is located in a area where no other companies work during nights.

Please let me know what are the rules about women working alone or only with only one other male member in the night shifts and also about cab facility in night shifts.

Thanks a lot for your help!

Dear member,

There are two issues involved in your post. First is two employees work in the night shift who have opposite gender and second is non-availability of the transportation facility. However, latter has no bearing on former. If the transportation is provided even then also fear in the mind of the female employees will not be reduced.

You have not written what type of job do you do. Probably it is related to customer service or dealing with customers in Europe or USA. Whatever the nature of your work, if you have hesitation in working with a male employee then have you put up application to MD expressing your concern? If your concerns are not heeded then simple option is to quit the employment. As such you have completed two years in your current job.

Notwithstanding your concern for your security, it is a question of trust as well. If any mishap were to happen, anyway it would happen. A woman employee working during day time at Infosys, Pune was hacked to death. An Indian working at Microsoft at USA, had forced himself upon his woman colleague and that too during day time!

At the time of joining, HR of your company had apprised you the conditions of the employment. You had accepted those conditions. But far from getting accustomed to it or acquiring confidence, how come two years later fear has crept in your mind? Is it that you have heard or overheard some rumour or gossip related to night shift?

Wrong trust is detrimental as much wrong distrust. A line that divides trust and mistrust is too thin or blurred and third person, like members of this forum cannot comment on it. Therefore, take a judicious call on continuation of your employment!


Dinesh Divekar

From India, Bangalore
Dear M'm,

This forum had discussed this issue of employing female during night shift. There are also provisions both for and against this. Modern India is banking upon IT/ITES services to survive it's economic stability and to employ educated youths. There has been inevitable circumstances for small & medium entrepreneurs to recurit & employ more and more youths especially female coming out of ever increasing engineering and other colleges, for night shifts which we cannot find fault with. However your case is very worrysome. It's easy to quote some rule and get away with it but fact remains you have been informed this only option and initially you prepared for it. But the present happenings does't augur well to ensure your safety. I share your anxiety, understand your problems but it is not going to help you in any manner by raising this issue with your admin. Coming to worse they might change you to day shift for a while and revert to night shift again. It seems that there are no options with them also. Then what is left for you is to seek better work place environment elsewhere. You may go thru' these links where this forum discussed this issue which will give you some insight into various facets of this vexed problem..

Pl.Don't panic and curse yourself there are thousands like you, have courage and look for a better job, that could be ultimate solution.

From India, Bangalore
As suggested by a learned member, you can write to the higher Management for help. You can also take appointment of HR or other senior Manager and brief him about your issues. If you are worried then probably you may not be able to concentrate on job requirement, resulting in probably errors in work. so the best option is to speak.
Seek help of other colleagues, Is there any practice of change of shift amongst employees so that You can seek shift change with another worker from day shift. Somebody may respond to your request and accept your night shift.

From India, Mumbai
Shops & Commercial establishments Act & Rules made there under shall apply it is not a factory. Safety of female employees and obligation of employer is mentioned there. Please have a look at that.
From India, Thane

Thanks for your answer.

Yes, I work for the customer support team in my company.

When I was hired I was informed that I will work with a team of male team members (not just one) to which I agreed. Later few male team members were terminated and I was put in the day shift as there was only one other guy with me in the night shift and the management present at that time agreed thinking that if the other male team member takes a leave then I will be alone in the office. Since then I am in the day shift. Now, the management has changed and the team members in the night shift have complained to the HR that they have been in the night shift since they joined and the shifts are not rotating as it was stated during their hiring. As a result of this myself and another female colleague are being forced to start rotating shifts and work night shifts allowing the male team members to work the day shift.

There is no point in taking this to the HR as the HR head himself is forcing the management to put shift rotations in practice.

I am worried not just about working with only one other male member but also because if that male member is on a leave I will end up alone in the whole office. It is a very scary situation for me.

I understand your point that HR may not support your views. But there are other superiors including directors who would not introduce something when female employees are concerned.
Further there are governmental rules on safety. If your concern is that you are alone in office in night shift, the higher management should know your concern. It is difficult for higher management including HR to ignore your concern.
You may forward your concern in writing if personal meeting with higher ups, is not possible.
Thanks & regards

From India, Mumbai
Why don’t you to talk to your Manager that you can work from home as and when you are required to work in night shift
From India, Mumbai
Dear Lady and all learned Members

I understand the seriousness, as per my view and experience in dealing such cases during my

long carrier, It would be better if all of you consider the following points also in your judgements:

1. Is she the only expert employee who need to work in the night?

2. If the Lady is married and having children (OR) married and not having children?

3. What is the security position guarding the Office?

4. What are the timings she need to work for?

5. Does the Office and the work places is covered under CC surveillance?

6. Does the Office is set up WOMEN CELL as per the Law?

7. As the lady employee signed any agreement covering the shift duties?

However, the Management is completely responsible and answerable to law, in the following conditions:

1. If employee married and having small children, then the law clearly restrict the

Night shift work

2 .Management can't impose the rule or ask single lady employee to work alone

or with other Gender without providing the proper security working conditions

3. If WOMEN CELL setup in the office, the cell can appraise the issue to BOD

to find an solution and make an alternate



If the Office is not guarded by the proper Security, Management can be questioned about

manning the night shifts with lady employees without proper security.

The lady employee may approach "Women Protection Cell" set up as per the State laws.

From India, Hyderabad

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