In search of better work culture
Optimal utilization of human resource can do wonders
NAZIR AHMED GILKAR
One fine morning on arriving at the HMT factory main gate it was found locked out .Management and employees union had not reached a common understanding to redress a particular grievance. Union office bearers went on hunger strike and the factory was locked out by the management. Some employees after 3-4 days approached the then chief minister Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah at Mujahid Manzil. He gave them a patient hearing but said the factory was locked out by its owner and they should mend their behavior. (At that time it could be realized that lockout was the prerogative of employer only and not employees.) After a while he wielded his staff and the people were chased away.
Meanwhile he must have probably directed the Deputy Commissioner, Srinagar and in the evening it was announced on radio that the strike was called off. DC served a glass of juice to the striking employees and normal work was resumed from the next morning after a bond was executed by the employees that discipline would be maintained.
The employees were jubilant as on every 20th of a month they used to receive an additional packet of money in terms of production incentive after achieving performance of more than the threshold limit of 16 equivalent watches per capita. The production incentive acted as booster to meet the targets set. The employees were entitled for yearly profit sharing bonus as well. They thus got their salaries and wages for more than 13 months during a financial year. They were enjoying all other fringe benefits like subsidized canteen and transport and full medical reimbursement even for their dependants besides current and deferred monetary benefits.
The factory was inaugurated by the then prime minister late Indira Gandhi. She took off her shoes, wore slippers to enter the main Assembly section fully manned by women workforce. The plant was air-conditioned and dust proof. The components were assembled into watches manually that needed dexterity, patience and expertise.
She was happy and smiled on seeing young Kashmiri girls, in the age group of 16-18 years, busy in assembling watches. She had taken personal interest in setting up of this plant at Srinagar. The role played by GM Sadiq, then chief minister, was also appreciable.
The campus placement was started by HMT Srinagar in early 1970s when a team of managers of the factory selected a group of 3 students at Islamia College of Science and Commerce for its Accounts Department. The scheme of apprentice trainees was also started for the first time in the factory in mid 1970s when around 400 apprentice trainees for different production shops were selected and regularized after one year based on their performance.
The selection process at HMT Srinagar was very tough, but fair. One had to undergo written test and face the board comprising professionals for interview. No recommendations but performance was the sole criterion for selection.
The Japanese engineers and technicians were imparting on-spot training to workforce in production shops. In main assembly shop an operator was working on bezel with the watchmakers hammer. The Japanese engineer did not approve of that way of functioning. Put the bezel in the polythene cover and used the hammer slightly and softly.
The employees were trained in batches in active trade unionism and for a period of 3 months for one hour per day. During the training programme a tour to other units of the company was also organized with a view to observe the functioning in other units to expose them to external environment.
At Pinjore (Punjab) tractor unit, it was highly astonishing to see how with all dedication the workers were busy in their work in the scorching heat of June; and the heat from furnace as the iron ore melts at 1000 degrees to cast in moulds for the engines.
The primary objective of writing this series of write ups is to reactivate workforce in the state to perform with zeal in a disciplined way. We can meet every challenge and bring effectiveness in operations if we make optimal utilization of resources, are equipped with updated technology and strive for perpetual value addition in our efforts.
The author is principal SP College. He can be mailed at email@example.com
Lastupdate on : Tue, 22 May 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Tue, 22 May 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Wed, 23 May 2012 00:00:00 IST
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