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Creating A Workplace Where All Voices Matter

Suresh Kumar Chitralayam, Director of People and Operations at WNS-Vuram believes that creating open communication at all levels in a trust-based ecosystem addresses challenges and enlists participation by the workforce during policy development and implementation

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Fostering an environment where every employee feels empowered to share their thoughts and experiences is paramount in this ever-evolving business landscape. Suresh Kumar Chitralayam, director of people and operations at WNS-Vuram delves into the vital strategies that leaders can employ to ensure an open and inclusive atmosphere where team members can express themselves without fear of judgment or reprisal.

How can leaders ensure that all employees feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and experiences without fear of judgment or reprisal? 

Leading with an empathy-first approach is crucial to building strong bonds with the workforce. To nourish a culture where employees feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and experiences, it is important to lead by example, communicate openly and actively listen. It is also important to embrace a feedback culture driven by compassion which allows for fair conflict resolution. By prioritising well-being and happiness, organisations can create and sustain a positive working environment, where all voices are valued and heard, thus contributing to the overall growth and success of the organisation.

How does involving the workforce in policy development contribute to a more inclusive approach to creating policies that affect employees from various backgrounds? 

Encouraging active participation by the employees in policy development is essential for shaping progressive and more inclusive policies that strengthen the organisational culture. While inculcating a sense of ownership, bringing in diverse perspectives and experiences ensures fair, effective and culturally sensitive policies. 

What methods or platforms can organisations use to solicit feedback from employees during the policy development process? 

To solicit feedback from employees during the policy development process, we have several effective means of communication in place. At WNS-Vuram, we have developed an in-house platform for idea submission that segregates ideas based on their area of impact and processes them for review by the committee. Further, open interaction sessions from the grassroots levels to organisation-wide meetings (All Hands Meeting) and informal groups (Nodes) are encouraged which helps realign ideas and ensures continuous improvement of the existing policies and benefits. Anonymous feedback options via pulse surveys and polls allow us to monitor the impact of the ideas implemented and help us take corrective action whenever necessary. 

What challenges are encountered when attempting to involve employees in policy development and how to address these challenges? 

Active involvement in policy development comes with its own share of challenges, including managing time constraints, overcoming resistance to change and soliciting effective feedback. Open communication at all levels in a trust-based ecosystem addresses challenges and enlists participation by the workforce during policy development and implementation. Effective change communication driven by empathy and compassion plays a major role in bringing people together aligned to their well-being and the company’s vision. To take it even further, measures to reduce stress levels and improve mental health and well-being can prove beneficial. 

Can you provide examples of specific metrics or indicators that help gauge the success of policies co-created with employees? 

At WNS-Vuram, employees have unlimited hospitalization leaves that don’t affect the existing leave balance. Similarly, the health insurance policy exemplifies the transparency of how the organisation practices what it preaches. Regardless of the prior experience and designation, each employee gets the same health benefit when joining the organisation. In other words, a vice president and a fresher start with the same health insurance coverage. This policy is a crucial aspect of the equity initiative treating each life equally regardless of their designation. The coverage keeps increasing with years of service and covers family members, dental insurance, COVID-19 hospitalization, home quarantine expenses, maternity, and childbirth.



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