Can CSR Initiatives Create Engaged Employees? Egis Finds Out

Can CSR Initiatives Create Engaged Employees? Egis Finds Out

, Director-HR, Egis India
Suneel Kumar Wasan, Director HR, Egis India

Flexibility, authenticity, clarity, and trust are the most important themes in this time of uncertainty, and beyond. Clear and transparent messages and engagement with employees are key, highlighting contribution and purpose to engage them more and to reduce uncertainty with clear and relevant information. Strategic internal communication enables effective cross-departmental collaboration, ensures flawless communication, empowers employees, engages them, and delivers a positive employee experience. Employee engagement is the emotional attachment employees feel towards their place of work, role, position within the company, colleagues, and culture, and the effect this attachment has on their well-being and productivity. 

Apart from regular employee engagement practices, engagement and contribution towards various cause-related issues have become another way of employee engagement where employees find greater meaningfulness and value congruence at work

What data says about CSR in India?

India is the first country in the world that has mandated CSR for organizations whose net worth is INR 5 billion or above (approx. US $ 68 million or above), or net profit of INR 50 million or above (US $679983.50 or above), by virtue of Section 135 of Indian Companies Act, 2013. As per a 2016 report, there are 16000-17000 such organizations, and the country has been magnanimous in CSR spending. In 2014-19, over INR 1 trillion was spent on CSR (approximately $ 13.8 billion). As per the report on CSR (Thacker, H, CSR Policies around the World, 2019), India is among the top countries contributing to CSR, along with the USA and Denmark. 

Higher participation rates in CSR programs come from having a broad employee engagement strategy rather than just a CSR strategy. It is the inclusive focus on the employee first and their relationship with the company.  It is not just communicating about the CSR efforts, but creating comprehensive initiatives that drive employee activation, learning, and participation. 

For instance, we created a CSR club with around 200 members (voluntary) in the corporate office and extended the same to our site offices. The idea of having medicinal plants and creating a separate section for the same in the green belt was an outcome of an engaging discussion in the CSR club. 

Involving employees in CSR activities enables them to productively apply their individual strengths while feeling more empowered. At the same time, employees are exposed to the key challenges of society and given the opportunity to participate in addressing them. Today’s conscious employees demand corporate social responsibility programs that give them the opportunity to become personally engaged in making a difference at work. 

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EGIS is deploying its CSR capital in academic institutions like Manav Rachna University. Associating with such institutions ensures the availability of a large skilled workforce, which is necessary for the current scenario to increase productivity & efficiency, especially at a time when the Indian Government is investing significant capital in a variety of infrastructure projects. At the same time, in the corporate world, the investment in CSR is a direct link between the community’s employability needs and the firm’s own business requirements since it enables the corporation to develop and recruit a skilled workforce that is younger and better skilled. Our experience shows that these young people, when employed, prefer working for organizations that foster innovative thinking, skill development, and positive contributions to society. 

Thus, it is serving a dual purpose – to generate a future skilled workforce as well as a workforce that can be instrumental in generating value for the organization through involvement in various CSR activities. 

Author: Suneel Wasan has vast experience of 41 years in both public (15 years) & private sectors (the last 26 years). He has experience in human resources management, administration, and has worked as a senior technical professional in various infrastructure engineering consultancy organizations. 

Incorporation: Egis in India has completed 27 years in India
Number of Employees: 3000
Founders: Egis is an international player active in the consulting, construction engineering and mobility service sectors.
Key Executives:
Sandeep Gulati, Regional CEO – South Asia & Managing Director – India at Egis
Pankaj Vatsa, Executive Director – Highways, Buildings, Urban and Aviation
Manoj Nainani, Executive Director Infrastructure (Water, Ports & Energy)
Sanjay Sagar, Executive Director – Rail
Suneel Wasan, Director – HR
Vasudha G Sharma, Chief Commercial Officer
Sunil Kumar, CFO
Business Line: Egis is an international player active in the consulting, construction engineering and mobility service sectors.
Hiring Pipeline: Around 500 in the year 2022.
Workforce Pie (in %): 3000 staff well distributed across all services in various sectors – Rail, Water, Roads & Highways, Urban, O&M services etc
Key HR Factors: Diversity & Inclusion, Top Employer Certification, Well-being of staff etc.


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