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Old 18th June 2009, 19:19   #1
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Default It is high time IT Companies are brought under the purview of Labor laws

My wife is working in a leading Indian IT Company and there is tremendous work load. 16-18 hrs everyday including weekends.

I went to labour.nic.in and was not able to find any links pertaining to IT Sector.

I was wondering if there is any legal wayout of this, can the company be punished in india the same way infosys has to pay 22 million dollars in US for the very same reasons.
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Old 18th June 2009, 19:46   #2
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16-18 hours?! Woah! thats gonna hurt.
Do the employees get over time?
Anyways why don't you get in touch with your lawyer? Since you wish to go in legal way.
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Old 18th June 2009, 20:47   #3
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16-18 hours?! Woah! thats gonna hurt.
Do the employees get over time?
Anyways why don't you get in touch with your lawyer? Since you wish to go in legal way.
Agree - get in touch with your lawyer. But its really sad if they've got to work 16-18 hrs without overtime, there has to be something against it, unless its in your contract that you have to work and adjust your working hours to what the company needs, without overtime.
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Old 18th June 2009, 21:02   #4
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16-18 hours? For how long is this going on for?
Is this due to some emergency or exceptional case that this particular team is being made to work or is this the normal scenario?
Try to answer these questions before going the legal way. Your wife's career might get affected if you do something in a hurry.
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Old 18th June 2009, 21:04   #5
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Having been through the same situation in the early part of my career, I can understand your frustration. This situation is generally created by clueless managers who don't know how to run a project within schedule or how to estimate work.

There are always situation when 18 hours days may be needed, but only in emergency situations and it shouldn't last for months.
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Old 18th June 2009, 21:27   #6
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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Having been through the same situation in the early part of my career, I can understand your frustration. This situation is generally created by clueless managers who don't know how to run a project within schedule or how to estimate work.

There are always situation when 18 hours days may be needed, but only in emergency situations and it shouldn't last for months.
It is going on for the last 6 months. Working once or twice in a month is fine. I believe now understand Indian IT Companies Business Model. Quote lesser estimates, make people work like slaves, get the work done and show the world our low cost advantage.

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16-18 hours?! Woah! thats gonna hurt.
Do the employees get over time?
Anyways why don't you get in touch with your lawyer? Since you wish to go in legal way.
No Overtime.


I don't have a lawyer. I was wondering if anyone of us had a similar incident and had to take a legal route.

Last edited by Jaggu : 18th June 2009 at 22:15. Reason: Please use multi quote option. Thanks
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Old 18th June 2009, 21:35   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Having been through the same situation in the early part of my career, I can understand your frustration. This situation is generally created by clueless managers who don't know how to run a project within schedule or how to estimate work.

There are always situation when 18 hours days may be needed, but only in emergency situations and it shouldn't last for months.
Woooah , is it ok to last for at least few weeks ? , crazy man .
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Old 18th June 2009, 21:46   #8
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Like Samurai mentioned, it can happen. But, with Overtime pay-outs and for a short period of time. If the employees are being pushed to do 16-18hrs of production, without overtime payouts or some simillar incentives, it can be taken up. Labor laws are applicable to IT companies as well (to the best of my knowledge).

Most of the times a choice is given for OT (if it has to keep going on for weeks altogether). However, there are times when for short periods, all the employees may need to do OT to finish up a project.

Last edited by unni.ak : 18th June 2009 at 21:49. Reason: English. Grammar.
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Old 18th June 2009, 23:21   #9
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Employees are also to blame. When boss asks for 100 hour work week, 1 out of 10 will object. Rest will carry on. Some idiots even take pride in the fact that they worked till 2am, slept in a sleeping bag in office and went home at 6am, came back to work at 8.
they do not realize quality and validation guys like me have had to clean up the nonsensical useless stuff they write.
No wonder, India is known for donkey labor and not innovation in the IT industry.

As for labor laws, IT professionals do not come in the purview. But you should be thankful for it, otherwise every now or then some organization will ask you to go on strike, and then beat you up if you don't comply.
It will scare away companies too.
So in the end somebody has to make take a stand. A tough decision in these tough times.
Last but not the least, in my 8 years in the industry, I have never seen a 100 hours/week guy do more than 20 hours work in a week. The 80 extra hours are usually wasted. Ideally, sustained 80 hours a week are not really possible, and slowly efficiency will go down.
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Old 18th June 2009, 23:35   #10
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I have been in the It industry for over 8 years now, As a project manager I have had SOME instances where the team has had to work a few 12-14 hour Days due to last minute scope change that we could not refuse or some requirements that were missed out. The blame purely goes to the managers who cant Plan or stand up for their team, I left my last organization over a yr ago and the guys that reported to me still call me and ask me for advice.
What TSK said is absolutely true the other 9 need to stand up for their rights, more over if IT workers fell under Labor laws there would be a strike every other week and the indian IT industry would be doomed
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Old 18th June 2009, 23:45   #11
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Labour unions and corporate HR. two vested interests. Choose your poison. I too wouldn't mind if we had the choice.
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Old 19th June 2009, 00:00   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unni.ak View Post
........... Labor laws are applicable to IT companies as well (to the best of my knowledge).
..........
Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
..........
As for labor laws, IT professionals do not come in the purview. .......
The labour laws apply to all industries including the IT, ITES industries.

IT professionals however might not be covered in view of their pay, qualifications etc.

In most states, IT establishments are not regarded as factories but as commercial establishments.

Cheers,
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Old 19th June 2009, 00:04   #13
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....No wonder, India is known for donkey labor and not innovation in the IT industry.....
You've said it like it is tsk. This is the unpalatable truth.
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Old 19th June 2009, 00:26   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Having been through the same situation in the early part of my career, I can understand your frustration. This situation is generally created by clueless managers who don't know how to run a project within schedule or how to estimate work.

..
Quote:
Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Employees are also to blame. When boss asks for 100 hour work week, 1 out of 10 will object. Rest will carry on. Some idiots even take pride in the fact that they worked till 2am, slept in a sleeping bag in office and went home at 6am, came back to work at 8.
they do not realize quality and validation guys like me have had to clean up the nonsensical useless stuff they write.
No wonder, India is known for donkey labor and not innovation in the IT industry.
Let me share my experience ( very small ).
There are no laws and even if there are any laws, I am sure the best efforts will be made to hide them and then efforts will be made not to implement them.

The core of the trouble :

1) People end up in this industry considering that they will earn good money. They dont even know what is IT industry, but end up here for money.
Quality of life and work suffers.

2) Leaders. They are directionless and generally dont know a thing or two about management or work distribution. They must know who is good at what.
Very very poor analytical power.

3) Lack of knowledge. No offense meant, but general perception about IT job is that for first 5 years you are well paid exploited worker, then you are manager. Now those who become manager dont know a thing or two about what IT is, forget management.

4) Short sightedness. Typically Indian. Go for the easiest path, only to later on realize that the just slightly path was way safer in terms of investment, both human and material resources.

5) Politics. Believe me this plays a major role. I know people are targetted. What I mean is this, if I have good relations with boss, I can make anyone under him work more. Dont slaughter me with replies like " it is everywhere ". It is more pronounced in IT where loads become higher as dead line appears. And generally work is of same type.
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Old 19th June 2009, 01:18   #15
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The IT industry in India is reeling under recession and atleast my company (one of the Indian majors) is not showing any sign of recovery.

Around 18,000 people were terminated (Forced Resignation) in the last 6 months in the pretext of performance. Many of my friends who has proven mettle in the past 8-12 years were shown the door without giving any reasons. I can understand 5-10% bottom line performance pruning per year, but 18K is HUGE!!!.

What legal options does an Indian IT employee has if he is forced to resign showing no real and valid reason?

People who are still on jobs are facing major difficulties due to huge overtimes as mentioned by the OP. The staffing has reduced around 30%-40% for Fixed Price Projects and the team members bear the brunt with unrealistic work demands and timelines.

I think it is high time IT employees are unionized and Overtime made payable by the employer. The IT employers has taken us for a ride by paying absolutely Zero overtime benefits. What is the point in making all these money if you cant have an equally good social life?
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