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ONGC provides unique opportunity for nation-building: Director (HR)

Showcasing ONGC’s unique contributions towards nation-building, Director (HR) Dr Alka Mittal said that the energy major offers this unique employee value proposition with all its prospective employees. Talking during a panel discussions in a webinar on “Are you a great workplace contributing to nation-building”, organized by Great Place to Work, she shared, “Life may be challenging in this Energy Maharatna initially, but the long-term satisfaction it provides is worthwhile. Those who appreciate this value-addition of ONGC, join the organization and remain engaged,” said Dr Mittal.

Director (HR) mentioned that ONGC focuses on the intangibles, more than pay and perks. “Young employees, who join ONGC, are quite matured in their thoughts. They join the organization for a larger purpose, leaving other opportunities. ONGC needs and values their long-term association.”

Dr Alka Mittal was speaking at the webinar organized by Great Place to Work – global leader in certification of HR practices – on 28 July 2020. The webinar was participated by eminent speakers on the subject. Apart from her, the panel comprised of he former Chairman and Managing Director of Bank of Baroda Dr Anil Khandelwal and Vice President-HRM Tata Steel Mr Suresh Dutt Tripathi. The opening remark was given by Dr Santrupt Misra of the Aditya Birla Group.

Dr Anil Khandelwal (Top Left), Prasenjit Bhattacharya (Top Right), Dr Alka Mittal (Bottom Left) and Suresh Dutt Tripathi (Bottom Right)
Dr Anil Khandelwal (Top Left), Prasenjit Bhattacharya (Top Right), Dr Alka Mittal (Bottom Left) and Suresh Dutt Tripathi (Bottom Right)

Sharing the evolution of ONGC, Dr Alka Mittal said that ONGC, from a small group in search of oil in 1956, has turned into a Maharatna today. “We take a lot of pride in the founders of ONGC, who worked more for the passion than paychecks in difficult challenging environment; taking it as a mission to make India self-reliant in energy.”

Referring to the national wealth creation by ONGC, she shared that during 1956 to 1981, the government invested around Rs 342 crore in ONGC; over time ONGC created a wealth of over ten lakh crore, which is quite satisfying. ONGC employee’s turnover is very low as employees take pride in associating with the Group which in turn creates an organization that continues to contribute towards nation-building. Today, ONGC group has two Maharatnas and also Miniratnas – all committed to the growth of the organization, group and nation.

Speaking on how ONGC dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr Mittal said that the situation has been perplexing since March 2020. While the oil prices were plummeting, ONGC kept its unwavering focus on oil and gas production. She said that, as a model employer, the safety of Energy Soldiers at offshore and onshore locations was paramount and the Executive Committee stayed in constant touch with them through video-conferencing. However, she noted that dedicated energy soldiers of ONGC voluntarily worked in extended shifts and overstayed at duty to over 60 days, in place of the normal duty of 14 days.

“ONGC then organized charted flights to change the crew and their replacements were equally keen to relieve their counterparts. This was the spirit. The genesis of such a spirit is when Mumbai High was developed in the early seventies, which bought India on the world oil map. The employee enragement started from that time, due to top management vision.”  

Anchoring the panel, CEO Great Place to Work Mr Prasenjit Bhattacharya lauded ONGC as a great organization for giving opportunities for learning. He noted that the return investment provided by ONGC is unprecedented in the country. He further mentioned that, “ONGC has proven itself as an organization which goes out of the way to stand by its employees on duty.”

Also speaking on the occasion, former Chairman and Managing Director of Bank of Baroda and veteran management thinker Dr Anil Khandelwal threw light on nation-building. “All of us are building the nation. The uniqueness lies in who is able to create a vision for the nation.” He opined that there are a lot of people in various walks of life who provide leadership for nation-building. The leadership role is how to create good education, public health system. Good leadership is created both by observing good and bad leaders. One should not forget that the CEO should create intangibles for the organization's values and system. When one works on intangibles, tangible results are the natural outcome. “Nation-building not only relates to technology or investment, it is people play, its leadership.”

Vice President-HRM Tata Steel Ltd. Mr Suresh Dutt Tripathi said that when the foundation of the company comes from the thought of nation-building, its existence benefits the community directly. The thought process of Tata Steel has been to help the long term sustenance of its communities, which transcends its business. “Keep the purpose in the mind, means will automatically come.”

The webinar was anchored by Practice Head Great Place to Work Ms Basuri Dutta.