The Snapdeal protests, which broke out at Snapdeal’s Sarita Vihar office 2 days ago, have just gotten messier. After the agitating employees had approached the CM Arvind Kejriwal’s office, the Delhi government has directed the Labour Department to look into the matter. Snapdeal has requested for a 2 day period to explain its stand to the Labour department.
The protesting employees, who numbered around 200, had camped overnight at Snapdeal’s office and refused to leave despite repeated entreaties by the management. “We had no access to food or water, and they even turned the fans and AC off”, says a Snapdeal employee who’d spent the night at the office sprawled on one of the desks. Employees had spent the night in their chairs or sleeping on the floors of the office as a mark of protest.
Relief had come next morning when food was arranged from a neighbouring Gurudwara. Snapdeal had consistently refused to engage with the protestors, but managed to get them out of the office after issuing a notice to the Police. “Snapdeal really showed us how low they could sink today”, a Snapdeal employee told a news channel. “The notice claims that we’re not authorized to be at the office, but we all still have our IDs.”, he said flashing his Snapdeal badge. “We have not been issued with a termination notice, and we haven’t resigned. We have every right to be in this office.” A PCR van has been stationed outside the office since yesterday after Snapdeal said that its property was being damaged, but employees claim this is not true. “It has been a peaceful protest.”, says another employee.
The protests began at Snapdeal’s office 2 days ago when 200 employees working at its Customer Service Division had been put on a Performance Improvement Plan. Under the conditions stipulated in the Plan, employees would have to drastically improve their performance scores internally, or be fired within a month.
But employees allege that the new targets that they have been assigned are impossible to reach, and this move is designed to fire people en masse without having to pay their severance packages. “The Customer Satisfaction Scores (CSAT) at Snapdeal hover around 60-65%. Under the Performance Improvement Plan, we’re supposed to reach CSAT scores of 85%.” Employees claim that customer satisfaction scores are a function of Snapdeal’s policies, and don’t solely reflect their performance.
Snapdeal’s employee protests have taken on a colour that has been hitherto unseen in Indian startups. Employees have raised slogans against the company and its founders, and a group of protestors even created drew Kunal Bahl’s likeness on a poster and proceeded to smear black paint all over it.