“Organisations will increase productivity of its workforce,” Uma Rao

Uma Rao, CHRO, Granules India believes that, “Most companies will focus on their costs and make an all out effort to keep them in check.”


2022 was a volatile year for HR & workforce

2022 was about a rebound after the pandemic with much confusion about the way forward for many organisations. Several tech companies had done exceedingly well during the pandemic and with the easing of lockdown and return to normalcy, these companies had the challenge of sustaining the momentum gathered till then. During the pandemic, companies spent a lot more on retention of people and hiring new talent at higher costs. With the changing circumstances post pandemic, the companies experienced pressure on margins and cash flows coupled with indications of an economic slowdown and high inflation. This led companies to take various actions to cut costs, and layoffs were resorted to by many to effect this. This, to me, seems an indication of bad management where the risk assessment mechanism of the organisation has failed.

2023: Will it be a turmoil again or peace?

It appears 2023 will be a year with uncertainties, given the world events like the anticipatory economic slowdown in the US, ensuing war, European issues, the on and off pandemic effects and shortage of funds for start-ups. The talent pool will keep shrinking in the years to come as young people across the world will not be able to invest in studies and growth and would much rather work for subsistence leading to erosion of competitive talent. Most companies will focus on their costs and ensure they are kept in check. Talent will be a key focus area and smart companies will ensure they retain their talent and build their competencies further in uncertain times such that they increase productivity of its workforce. For India it will be a good year economically as the global slowdown may not impact us much.

Most companies will focus on their costs and make an all out effort to keep them in check

Balance between rising inflation and changing employee expectations

With rising inflation employees are bound to face challenges on their domestic front. While they would expect a big change in compensation, most times it doesn’t translate as such into action as companies can only pay against what they produce. In such times HR can play an important role in terms of ensuring a fair compensation review process especially with regard to cost of living index, concentrate more on total rewards and ensure that non-monetary benefits such as health and wellness and insurance benefits ease the burden of the employee. The DEIB agenda will lead to more innovation, better productivity and more engagement.

Debate on moonlighting to continue

‘Moonlighting’ is a concept that existed for a long time. What an employee does after the official working hours in an organisation should not concern anyone unless these are unlawful activities. Several people want to provide an outlet to their creative expression, a passion for a cause or explore ways to earn extra income and there should not be any problem with the same.

Organisations can put in some checks and balances to ensure the following:

There are systems to ensure data privacy and consequences of data breach are well explained to employees
A confidentiality and non-disclosure agreement is in place
Productivity at the workplace has to be maintained and consequences of loss of productivity is well understood
Finally, the most important one is that organisations must keep their employees well engaged with meaningful work and allow them the opportunity to grow such that they do not feel the need to look elsewhere for gratification of any sort.

I believe, with the advent of the gig economy and flexible work options, there will not be any law against moonlighting.

Importance of employee talent bringing HR closer to the top role

The pandemic has already put HR at the very top along with the CIO. This will get strengthened further and managing talent will be of prime importance to every organisation due to shortage of talent. HR will be on the radar of the CEO and promoters quite clearly.

33 leaders predict the upcoming trends for 2023. To find out more click here.


  1. Thank you ma’am! for sharing such a beautiful article ” organization will increase productivity of it’s workforce” on HR Katha platform.

    Great learning there.


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