Debjani Ghosh, NASSCOM, President, in her recent media interactions said that more than 90 percent employees in the IT industry are working from home.
After Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the extension of the three-week nationwide lockdown for another 19 days till May 3 to battle the coronavirus pandemic, the Ministry of Home Affairs has issued Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for social distancing to maintain in offices, workplace, factories and establishments.
IT and ITeS providers can now work at 50 percent strength, according to a guidelines issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
With 50 percent strength allowed, it comes as huge relief for IT service providers, who have enabled working from home (WFH) for majority of the workforce. Debjani Ghosh, NASSCOM, President, in her recent media interactions said that more than 90 percent employees in the IT industry are working from home.
In some cases where they have not been able to, they have asked employees take time off during the period. In case of business processing outsourcing firms, it has been especially hard given that certain processes does not allow work from home.
Frequently Asked Questions
A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.
There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.
Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.
Sangeeta Gupta, Senior VP and Chief Strategy Officer, NASSCOM, said that this will help firms, especially BPOs, who have not been able to enable WFH due to processes. According to executives, only 60 percent of the workforce have been able to WFH on average and in some firms it is only 10 percent.
In addition the companies will not be letting all the 50 percent work from home altogether. Gupta said that NASSCOM's advisory is be cautious and let 10-15 percent first, then slowly increase.
Follow our real-time coverage on COVID-19 here.Find other stories related to MHA guidelines on Lockdown 2.0 here.