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Harsh K. Sharma (L), Anshul Sunil Saurastri, Manisha Singh

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to drag on, employers are buckling in for another year of this strange ‘new normal.’ A number of firms have adapted the way they work, going above and beyond and placing a greater emphasis on wellbeing.

 

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE WAYS YOUR FIRM IS SUPPORTING EMPLOYEE WELLBEING DURING THIS PROLONGED PERIOD OF UNCERTAINTY?

Harsh K. Sharma, founder, Prosoll Law

There is absolutely no substitute for health, and we’ve ensured that by way of enhancing medical insurance cover, the members of the firm have access to the best quality medical support and services when needed. We’ve also supported the members and their families towards getting them vaccinated. Work from home has been encouraged as the default mode of working, all through the last 15 months, and we’ve ensured that the team is provided adequate infrastructure support.

When the healthcare system was collapsing due to the overload of patients and casualties, finding access to genuine resources was the most critical challenge and even the minutest help was life-saving. Lastly, there is no question of pay cuts for any of our team members. We have introduced the concept of “wellness leaves,” which gives our members the due break that they deserve from the chaos of the pandemic and the burnout related to working from home.

Anshul Sunil Saurastri, partner, Krishna & Saurastri Associates

A week prior to the announcement of the national lockdown, we requested our entire workforce to begin working remotely until further notice. We have been operating in this manner ever since. In hindsight, we believe that this prompt and early action was key for making our people feel safe and secure. Senior attorneys have been guiding and offering counsel to their team members in every way possible to improve morale, manage stress and anxiety. HR has also played an important role by continuously seeking updates from employees about their physical and mental well-being. Such human touch has been very helpful. As soon as vaccines became available on a large scale, we encouraged vaccination, subject of course to medical advice. Employees have also been urged to avoid accumulating leaves and instead to use them to improve mental wellness. These are very sensitive times, and it is critical that employers take care of their most valuable assets, their people.

Manisha Singh, partner and co-founder, LexOrbis

As a firm, we made the decision not to reduce the salary of any of our employees till the crisis was over. Rather, the firm announced incentives and increments for all employees. To keep the team motivated and connected, we came up with the idea of sending souvenirs to all our employees. During the second wave, our Operation Support Team worked round the clock in helping, collating and providing information to employees on the availability of medicine, hospital beds, ICUs, oxygen cylinders etc. The firm also undertook to provide financial support by providing an extended two weeks paid sick leave if any of the employee or their family members were affected. To keep the morale high, we offered flexibility of working hours, took several initiatives for the well-being of employees and their families, and held virtual events. We have made sure that our co-workers feel secure and appreciated at their work, and are supported throughout this prolonged period of uncertainty.

 

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