PepsiCo goes ‘location-free’ to retain talent

Even local employees can take on global functions without moving out of the country


The stress of having to relocate in a bid to realise their aspirations has often led employees to consider giving up their jobs altogether. HRKatha recently reported on the growing unwillingness of employees, at the global level, to relocate.

PepsiCo saw over a dozen of its employees, including senior and mid-level staff, resigning in India, in the last six months, out of which five were from the HR department.

Realising the need to retain its talent, the Company is planning to allow its employees the option to work from any location in India. If the plan works out, employees will probably be allowed to take on even global roles without actually leaving Indian shores. While such employees will work from India, they will report to leaders in foreign locations.

As per a report in the Economic Times, around 10 per cent of the positions at its head office in Gurugram, are likely to be declared ‘location-free’.

For instance, the head of marketing for APAC may be based out of Gurugram and report to the global marketing head. Similarly, the global head of learning or head compensation and benefits and head of digital report to their functional heads or bosses based out of Dubai or New York.

The location-free posts will only be applicable for backend roles such as human resources, research & development, information technology, and finance. Customer facing functions such as sales or those who are in production cannot be made part of this practice.

The company believes that this ‘location-free’ approach will help it retain talent that is unwilling to shift their base. It will also ensure that the professional aspirations of its employees are taken care of, without uprooting them from their base.

Taking on local roles based out of India or any other market has been made possible with technology which has actually bridged the distance gap.

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