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Swiggy delivery workers protest in Chennai over pay structure tweak, services disrupted

Delivery workers for Swiggy allege that the new structure being brought in will lead to a steep drop in income, and requires them to be on the road for much longer hours.

September 22, 2022 / 08:47 AM IST

Delivery workers of Swiggy have been protesting in various locations in Chennai over the company’s changes in pay structure this week, leading to a disruption in services.

Several users have complained on Twitter about most restaurants being unavailable for delivery in the locations where workers are striking, or about extremely long delivery timelines. Swiggy’s quick commerce service, Instamart, too has been impacted.

Delivery workers for Swiggy allege that the new structure being brought in will lead to a steep drop in income — at least of Rs 5,000 per week — and that after paying for expenses such as petrol, they won’t have much left.

A delivery partner who has been driving for the platform for over two years told Moneycontrol that for someone who drives on the platform full-time, the new rules state that they would have to finish 180 orders a week to earn Rs 11,500.

“We can’t finish so many orders for sure. They won’t let us. You won’t get this amount even if we were to complete 179 orders. We will have to login at 5.30 am and stay on till 11 in the night. We also have families, this way we will have to work longer hours and won’t get to see them at all,” he said.

He said that the 180 orders would require them to complete 26 orders a day every day of the week, which will require them to be on the road for over 16 hours.

There are other such slabs as well, as per the communication from Swiggy to delivery workers, with 180 being the highest. On completion of 110 orders the pay is Rs 7,000, 125 orders for Rs 7,500, 140 orders for Rs 8,500, 160 orders for Rs 9,750, with the 180 order slab being the highest one.

The delivery partner said that even on completion of 179 orders, there would be a loss as it would fetch only Rs 9,750.

He pointed out that some more weekly incentives have been removed as well. “If you earn Rs 3,500, you earlier got Rs 1,500 as weekly incentive. Now, that too has been removed,” the delivery partner quoted above said.

With the current payout structure, Swiggy is moving to a fixed pay structure rather than a payment structure per order. Another communication to workers sets out fixed pay for a particular number of orders for the various time slots, such as breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.

Another delivery partner says the drop in income of Rs 5,000 will leave them with nothing, since they already have commitments. “People do not know what to do regarding this steep drop in income, which is why they are congregating in various areas and protesting,” he said, adding that someone who would probably earn Rs 12,000 before expenses previously each week will only make Rs 7,000 now.

Workers are looking for these new changes to be rolled back.

Some delivery workers are also approaching the Collector to make a representation over these changes.

In a statement, Swiggy said that the new payout structure is created to provide more flexibility to the delivery worker “while ensuring that they are able to earn well with us irrespective of the platform orders”.

“There are no changes to how much Swiggy's delivery executives have the potential to earn or how long they have to work. We are in continuous discussion with our delivery executives to help them understand their payouts better, and are confident of them resuming deliveries at the earliest,” a Swiggy spokesperson said.

Haripriya Suresh
first published: Sep 22, 2022 08:47 am