Roadrunnr follows Flipkart’s don’t-come-now

Source | Business Standard 

While Flipkart has come under fire from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A) and now the Indian Institutes of Technology(IITs) for delaying the joining dates of campus hirees, the company isn’t the only one to do so.

Bengaluru-based logistics start-up Roadrunnr,  apparently in talks to merge with food delivery service TinyOwl, has done likewise. IIT Guwahati has followed IIM-A in writing a letter to Flipkart, the country’s largest e-commerce entity, seeking an explanation for the delay.

K Mohanty, chairperson for the centre of career development at the college, says of the Flipkart and now Roadrunnr problem: “We are not satisfied with their responses, where they cite business restructuring as a reason. These are the cream of the students that have been recruited. We are going to hold a video conference today of all the IITs to decide over the matter and what future steps to take.”

IIT Madras also confirmed that Roadrunnr had asked some students to whom it had made offers during campus placements to report for work only in December.

Several phone calls to Roadrunnr chief executive Mohit Kumar did not elicit any response until the writing of this article.

While throwing students that were promised employment into a tizzy, the December joining date that Flipkart and Roadrunnr have suggested also makes it problematic for these students to take part in the (next) December round of campus placements.

The IITs also say that the compensation amount of Rs 1.5 lakh offered by Flipkart to affected students is not acceptable.

“Flipkart has made it difficult for us. They insisted on premium slots (for hiring interviews) and were given these. Of course, they did offer premium packages. But, the deferred joining date is not only too late but also exactly on the day when the (next) final placement process starts,” said V Babu, advisor for training & placements at IIT-M.

Flipkart had made offers to an undisclosed number of IITs this campus recruitment season, with annual pay packages of Rs 24-26 lakh.

The IITs are demanding that the company compensate affected students with up to six months of their promised salaries.

“There’s no question that this is unusual. There’s also an element of being in a rarefied space. You don’t tend to mess around with placements any more considering the kind of salaries that are available, the kind of competition for talent, etc. So, it seems a little strange,” said Priya Chetty Rajagopal, former vice-president & partner at global executive recruitment firm Stanton Chase international.

In a public statement on the Flipkart Stories portal on Wednesday, the company explained it was deferring joining dates of students recruited from campuses as it was undergoing an organisational restructuring and did not want to bring in new recruits until this was complete.

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