Ugam, the analytics company, a subsidiary of the Merkle Group, has managed to focus on employee engagement even during these tough times. In the past few weeks spanning the lockdown, Ugam has created a range of 40 plus formal and informal engagement activities for its at-home employees.
The formal segment includes townhalls with Sunil Mirani, co-founder and CEO, Ugam; learning activities; sessions on mental and physical health; as well as pulse surveys conducted by the organisation. Townhalls are a weekly affair with the CEO, and topics of discussion include questions ranging from job security and business health, to upskilling among others. There are seven townhalls planned for the next week as well. Apart from the CEO, functional heads and managers also host their own townhalls with their concerned departments and employees.
Surveys are also a regular feature of the Company. There are pulse surveys conducted as an effort to measure the pulse of the organisation and the mindset of the employees, whether positive or negative. These help alert the management about any potential people issues that need to be acted on. Ugam conducted a survey before beginning the work-from-home arrangement as well, to prepare for it better.
“We have had four pulse surveys so far. The HRBP team has in the past two months connected with more than 800 individual employees and their families to gauge how they are feeling and sort out issues, if any arise,” says Vaishali Mehta, SVP, human capital management, Ugam.
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In the area of mental and physical well-being, the Company invites external guest experts who counsel and guide employees on mental, physical and financial well-being through online sessions.
None of these activities are ‘one and done’. They are all running consistently and we plan to upgrade them to be more interactive and effective
Among the informal activities organised, the Company has the following in store:
Indoor recreation – This is a way to encourage employees to spend time on their hobbies and share them with the rest of the team.
Corridor conversations – Office banter and idle conversations are one of the most missed parts of working from a physical office space. To make up for it, the Company has created corridor conversations which, ‘make up for the fun in-person banter and coffee conversations and is also a great way to know one’s colleagues better.’ Here, employees answer quirky personal trivia questions, which are then shared with the rest of the team.
Fam-Jam – This is a way to get the family members to engage with the rest of the team, be it be through a normal conversation among employees and their families or through an art contest for the restless kids at home!
Virtual housie, virtual dumb charades and fitness challenges are also a regular part of the employees’ working-from-home routine.
“None of these activities are ‘one and done’. They are all running consistently and we plan to upgrade them to be more interactive and effective. These activities go a long way in building personal connect and employee morale,” asserts Mehta.