Bengaluru floods
Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai cited "unprecedented rainfall and overflowing" water bodies for the deluge but assured his government's commitment to restore normalcy | Pic: ANI

Bengaluru: IT firms, startups ask staff to WFH amid rain, floods

India’s best-known IT firms and startups have asked staff to work from home as torrential rains brought chaos on streets of the technology hub, marooning roads and snapping water and electricity supplies.

While parts of the city that houses several global companies and home-grown startups, were under water, operations in IT firms and startups were largely unaffected as most of them had power backup and a hybrid work environment where some employees logged in from home.

But some of the posh housing colonies were flooded and tractors were pressed into service to rescue residents.

As rains disrupted traffic and threw lives out of gear, footages of IT workers travelling in tractors to reach workplace amid heavy waterlogging in the city also surfaced on social media platforms.

Also Watch: Bengaluru grapples with water-logging, traffic jam on Day 3 of rains

“All our associates at Bengaluru are safe. We are closely monitoring the situation and our delivery teams have been advised to exercise due caution,” a spokesperson of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) said.

It however did not give the number of employees reaching the office and those logged in from home. Indian IT major Wipro advised its employees to work from home on Tuesday (September 6) and said business continuity plans have been invoked.

“Due to heavy rainfall in Bengaluru, Wipro has advised its employees to work from home today. Business Continuity Plans have been invoked and there has been no disruption to business,” Wipro said in response to an e-mail query by PTI.

Many parts of the rain-battered city on Tuesday saw a repeat of scenes witnessed on Monday (September 5), inundated roads and streets, tractors ploughing through flooded localities ferrying people, submerged vehicles and more overnight rains.

Also Read: Bengaluru continues its battle against floods, woman falls to death

“Things are bad. Please take care,” Gaurav Munjal, founder of the Softbank-backed education technology firm Unacademy said on Twitter after he, his family and his dog were rescued by a tractor.

Rituparna Mandal, General Manager at MediaTek Bengaluru said the firm is taking all necessary measures to ensure safety of the teams during the flood situation.

“We have issued guidelines to ensure minimum disruption to work and have advised employees to work from home till the situation improves,” Mandal said. MediaTek has approximately 800 employees in India but it did not share the Bengaluru breakup.

Meesho spokesperson said the startup announced a first-of-its-kind Boundaryless Workplace Model in February 2022 which gives employees the power to choose to work from home, office or any location of their choice.

Also Read: Bengaluru rains: Woman dies due to electrocution

“The flexibility of the policy enables employees to choose a location based on their convenience, thereby breaking the traditional workplace dynamics of compulsory attendance to office.

“The work from anywhere model has played an important role in the current situation in Bengaluru when daily commute has been hugely disrupted in the wake of the incessant rains,” the spokesperson said.

Decentralisation of the workplace has therefore been instrumental in ensuring that neither employees nor “our operations are adversely impacted by the rains,” the spokesperson said.

Also Read: Several streets and areas still waterlogged in rain battered Bengaluru

“Additionally, we have satellite offices in major metro cities that offer employees further options to choose their preferred work location. Driven by our people-first mindset, we will continue to take forward-looking and industry-defining policies that are vested in the best interests of employees.”

(With inputs from agencies)

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