Reimbursement part of salary to change! Wi-Fi, BYOD, home office furniture allowance may be new normal

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Updated: May 25, 2020 8:11 AM

Raj N Phani, the founder of Zaggle, a payments start-up, says pay structure realignment is happening in corporate India as a response to Covid-19

With the country moving towards a digital economy to fight the pandemic, digitisation will become the new normal post the lockdown, too.

With work from home (WFH) becoming mainstream, we could see changes in the way companies compensate employees. Raj N Phani, the founder of Zaggle, a payments start-up, says that, going forward, salaries will be commensurate with performance and project delivery. “Wi-Fi allowance, BYOD, home office furniture allowance could soon be the new normal,” he says. He adds that there is a pay structure realignment happening as a response to the Covid-19 crisis, where organisations are looking to increase the variable component in salaries, particularly of those in middle and senior management, in order to link compensation more to performance. “Companies are evaluating possibilities of optimising compensation programmes to preserve cash in the wake of disruptions caused by Covid-19,” he says.

On the emerging differences between employee reimbursement trends at corporates, SMEs and start-ups, he adds that while reimbursements at large corporates have pretty much remained the same as before the Covid-19 lockdown started, it is expected that reimbursements, as a category, will undergo a change. “The overall amount might increase especially if WFH becomes a permanent option. Some corporates have started offering reimbursements for internet connection plus easy loans for laptops, etc,” Phani says. On the other hand, for SME and start-ups, there is a downturn in reimbursements, “as most of them depend on rotation and monthly business to survive.”

With the country moving towards a digital economy to fight the pandemic, digitisation will become the new normal post the lockdown, too. While bigger companies are investing time and money in expanding technology and technical know-how, SMEs and small businesses lag in this area. Phani says organisations like Zaggle can help them digitise their functioning. “Zaggle has a range of products for SMEs. We can offer them a single platform that keeps track of their payments, which, in return, also helps reimburse employees. Technologies like AI and optical character recognition (OCR) can make small businesses efficient. The employee doesn’t have to worry about submitting bills or being scrutinised by bosses for a layout of expenditure incurred,” he says, adding, “we can provide a platform to SMEs to digitise their expenditures.”

On Saturday, Zaggle partnered with payments technology major Visa to launch solutions for SMEs and start-ups. Under this partnership, both the companies will jointly create solutions for SMEs and start-ups to improve productivity, efficiency and automate processes and reduce costs, along with focusing on easy and faster credit through a unique card that will have forex, prepaid along with credit.

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