The employees of CARS24 can seek assistance for any kind of issues, personal, emotional or official at any point of the day.
Most organisations believe that their responsibility toward employee’s well-being is confined to official work hours. What’s happening in their personal lives is not a matter of concern. However, organisations tend to forget that people who are under pressure in their personal lives, will certainly not be able to perform at their best even in the workplace.
What most large organisations have failed to understand, a small company such as CARS24 with around 600-odd employees has already implemented it.
Understanding the stressors and the importance of mental well-being of employees and its direct connect with their productivity, CARS24, introduced an Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) to ensure the mental wellbeing of its people.
While it may be easy to say that one should keep their personal and professional life separate, the fact is that whatever one experiences in one’s life outside work, does impact how one behaves or feels at the workplace.
The programme offers professional counselling sessions in association with Santulan, an entity working towards mental health, behavioural tools and solutions. As part of the initiative, the employees of CARS24 can seek professional assistance for various issues, including couple and marital issues, personal and emotional difficulties, death and bereavement issues, family and parenting concerns, stress, anxiety, depression and substance misuse. Employees facing any such issue(s) may call up a counsellor and seek help, without revealing their identity.
Vikram Chopra, CEO, CARS24, says, “Each one of us faces situations, which puts us under stress, and impacts us even at the workplace. It could be the smallest of things but to feel relieved, all we need to do is speak up, open up our hearts to someone who is not judgemental about us, understands us and can help us overcome the situation well.”
“With the confidential counselling service, our people know that they are cared for and there is someone to help them out with anything that bothers them,” he adds as he explains that people can only work properly if they are focussed, and that focus will come only when they are free of such day-to-day worries. While it may be easy to say that one should keep their personal and professional life separate, the fact is that whatever one experiences in one’s life outside work, does impact how one behaves or feels at the workplace. We all have one life and we are what we are—be it at the workplace or wherever—and organisations need to be cognizant of the same.
“We believe in taking care of our employees as they are the central pillars of our company. A healthy mind results in better productivity at the workplace and consulting with a professional provides an opportunity to deal with personal or work-related challenges,” Chopra opines.
Chopra is a strong believer in employee happiness and feels that it is most critical to business success. To keep a tab on employee satisfaction at the workplace, CARS24, in general, has a bi-weekly internal survey, where employees anonymously rank their experiences at the workplace on various parameters —relationship with their manager, alignment with the vision, satisfaction with their role, and so on. One of the important metrics therein is ‘happiness’, at both the professional and personal levels.
It was in these surveys that the Company observed that the scores on happiness were looking wavy, and hence, their HR head, Shivi Agrawal felt that the employees needed some intervention on that front. Also, these were areas that the employees may not even feel comfortable discussing with the HR team. “There are things that we hesitate to talk about with our family, or friends, leave aside people at work, or the HR teams. But these small things keep us distracted from work at the same time, which is why we decided to give people a sounding board where they could voice their concerns without having to worry about anything,” Chopra shares.
In addition, Chopra believes that a happy employee will give three times more output than a not-so-happy one. According to him, only two things matter for good talent—skill and will. “If one does not have a strong will, any skill won’t matter, whereas, if one has true will, any skill can be learnt. When we hire, we focus more on the will a person carries, and while at the workplace, the will is also a function of the kind of relationship one shares with their manager, how they feel in their current role and so on,” he concludes.