in the country, certified a ‘great place to work’
3rd October, Mumbai:Salaam Bombay Foundation is an organization that is about people who are driven by a common mission to change the future of millions of disadvantaged young children. Here, every employee is united by a shared set of values that define the culture of the Foundation — passion for purpose, actual impact and boundless dreaming amongst others. The result: a sterling organization that strives for excellence in a dynamic, fun, equal and inclusive work environment.
It is this work environment that has earned Salaam Bombay Foundation the recognition of A Great Place to Work(GPTW) from Great Place To Work® Institute. Great Place To Work® Institute is a global management consulting, research and training firm dedicated to enabling organisations achieve business objectives by building better workplaces. India’s Best NGOs to Work For – 2018 is Great Place to Work® Institute’s annual list recognizing the NGO organizations that have created a great workplace culture for their employees. Every year, the firm studies more than 700 organisations across industries and recognises the best of them based on their employee’s survey and people practices assessment. Participants in the NGO list also become eligible to feature in ‘India’s Best Companies to Work For’ (>500 employees) or ‘India’s Great Mid-Size Workplaces’ (100-500 employees).
Organizations are assessed in two parts – employee survey and people practices assessment. Employees are surveyed on the 5 dimensions of a great workplace – Fairness, Respect, Credibility, Pride and Camaraderie. People practices implemented in the organization are then assessed through the Culture Audit process which covers 9 distinct practice areas of a great workplace culture. The conclusion revealed that at Salaam Bombay, employees believeit is not a job but a calling.The focus and single-minded intensity they bring to everything they do has created real change in the lives of more than 5 lakh children over the last 16 years.Creative problem solving and a collaborative culture has helped them build lasting solutions recommended by the Harvard School of Public Health as replicable in developing countries around the world. While mutual respect and support are the pillars withinthe workplace, the highest standards of accountabilityare what they promise their donors and supporters. Salaam Bombayis also the recipient of the GuideStar Seal of Transparency.
Employees also gave a thumbs up to the Foundation’s work policies ranging from flexible working hours,equal opportunities, gender equality to a 3-day bereavement leave and a unique leave donation system. An employee can opt to donate his/her leaves to colleagues inneedof more days off in cases of extreme medical situations. The organization’s human resource policies keep evolving with changing times, keeping the best interests of the employees in mind. In addition to the regular maternity leaves, from the eight month of pregnancy, a two-hour leeway is also given to avoid rush hours.Such People –centric policies and Salaam Bombay’s family culture have resulted in employees being with the organisation for a longer period with many having completed 10 years with the Foundation.
Salaam Bombay employees also rated their organisation high on opportunities to grow and build careers. The leadership encourages innovation and risk-taking tempered with inter-department collaboration and internal checks and balances.The plethora of focus areas has attracted professionals with a variety of skill sets. Represented here are MBAs, MSWs, B.Eds MAs in Psychology, Economics, Research, M&E, etc. There is a perfect blend of youngsters with innovative ideas and experienced professionals with industry experience.
The culture of celebration and collaboration has always been prevalent at Salaam Bombay Foundation.A host of celebrations from Birthdays, Festivals, Baby showers, Farewells to Movie Screenings, Picnics, Team Lunches, Fitness Activities etc are a part of the Salaam Bombay Foundation schedule. Team bonding across departments is de-rigeur in Salaam Bombay. Such is its pull that some of the organisation’s beneficiaries are now its employees.
Speaking about the award, CEO Nandina Ramchandran, Salaam Bombay Foundation said, “We are delighted that Salaam Bombay is in the Top 10 of ‘Great Places to Work’ list for the social sector in India. It is a matter of pride for us as we strive to have happy employees who in turn enrich the futures of the disadvantaged children we work with. As a Non-Profit, we have to do more with less and it’s great that our innovative workplace policies have got a thumbs-up from our employees. ‘Happy Minds’ at Salaam Bombay make their job a calling.
Echoing her thoughts, Ms. Smruti Kasulwar, Vice President, Human Resource, Salaam Bombay Foundation said,“’Doing good’ begins within Salaam Bombay for our people, who then make a difference in society. We have a ‘family’ culture that creates a sense of belonging and a passion to make a difference.We are delighted that Salaam Bombay has been recognized as a ‘Great place to work’ and is amongst the top 10 NGOs to work for in the country.”
The employees too are elated. Said Kalpana Phawde, Project Co-ordinator, “Salaam Bombay Foundation has been instrumental in my growth. Everything that I have learnt I owe to Salaam Bombay. It gives us a huge canvas to paint and in the end we get to learn so much. The policies are employee friendly and everyone here is very supportive. We bond like a family and Salaam Bombay is what keeps us together. The organisation always stands with us even during personal crisis. We are happy with the work we do and that happiness is what keeps us going. In the last 10 years that have been with Salaam Bombay, my communication skills, confidence and leadership abilities have all improved.”