Wipro fires 300 employees for moonlighting for rivals, violating integrity
Information Technology giant Wipro has fired 300 employees for moonlighting, Chairman Rishad Premji said on Wednesday. The company said the employees were reportedly working with one of Wipro's competitors simultaneously. Premji, who had opined strongly against moonlighting a few weeks ago, said he stands by his comments. "It is a violation of integrity in its deepest form," he argued. Here's all about the development.
- As work-from-home became the norm during the COVID-19 pandemic, companies grew more concerned about employees taking up side gigs or moonlighting.
- Earlier, Premji said that moonlighting amounts to 'plain and simple' cheating.
- Notably, another IT giant Infosys shot a mail to its employees and warned them against "two-timing."
- However, many in the industry have spoken in support of the matter.
Addressing the All India Management Association (AIMA) National Management Convention, Premji said that Wipro discovered that 300 of its employees were moonlighting. The employees, who reportedly provided services to rival companies, were let go for an "act of integrity violation." "I stand by what I said...I do think it is a violation of integrity if you are moonlighting," he said, according to NDTV.
Reiterating his stand against moonlighting, Premji said, "The reality is that there are people today working for Wipro and working directly for one of our competitors and we have actually discovered 300 people in the last few months who are doing exactly that."
However, Premji explained that employees can have candid conversations about being the part of a band or "working on a project over the weekend." Employees can openly discuss this with the organization and decide if it works or not. But, "There is no space for someone to work with Wipro and competitor XYZ," he said. He reiterated that moonlighting means having another job secretly.
There is a lot of chatter about people moonlighting in the tech industry. This is cheating - plain and simple.— Rishad Premji (@RishadPremji) August 20, 2022
Any instance where an employee takes up a second job or extra work assignments at a separate company, alongside their existing full-time job, can be termed as moonlighting. It is the practice of working at another organization without informing one's primary workplace, and is opposed for its impact on productivity. However, arguments in favor say employees can take up extra gigs to support themselves.
Furore against moonlighting has grown, but many have spoken in support. CP Gurnani, Tech Mahindra CEO, said that it is important to change with the times. "I welcome disruption in the ways we work," he said earlier. However, Infosys, in a strongly worded internal communication 'No Double Lives' told its employees, "Dual employment is not permitted as per...Employee Handbook and Code of Conduct."