MOONLIGHTING: A Humble Perspective to understand it’s pros and cons

MOONLIGHTING: A Humble Perspective to understand it’s  pros and cons

Moonlighting is the concept of taking on work outside of your regular job. It used to be reserved for people who were either underemployed or in serious financial need.

Many workers work second jobs in the evenings because they require a second source of income. As inflation goes up, it gets more expensive to pay for food, discretionary accessories, housing, etc. As an operator, you should be paying attention to a staff member's job. It includes their punctuality, ability to follow instructions, and quality of work. First thing first, we have to know what is moonlighting in corporate.

The moonlighting job attracted attention after major IT firms made certain headlines. Firms like Infosys, moonlighting TCS, and moonlighting Wipro announced they would defer, reschedule, or decrease the varying payouts to staff members. This will be for the first quarter of the financial year 2023 due to falling margins.

IT firms such as Infosys and Wipro employ hundreds of thousands of young Indians. Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-62978201

 

Is Moonlight Ethical?

What is "moonlighting" in corporate? The term "moonlighting" refers to being employed in a company in addition to one's regular job. Organizations have criticized the practice, stating that employees holding numerous jobs can harm their efficiency.

We know working from home became the trend during the Covid-19 outbreak, which is thought to have caused an increase in dual occupations. Moonlighting has come under intense debate in the IT industry.

However, moonlighting in India is a subject where IT organizations are split when it comes to moonlighting. While some view it as immoral, others see it as an urgent need.

The topic of tech workers' moonlighting jobs has sparked a new discussion splitting views and posing challenging legal issues. The businesses are divided into two categories by side jobs: traditional and modern IT businesses. Most traditional companies prohibit their employees from working for third parties for strategic reasons. At the same time, the current generation believes that morals should develop with time.

Moonlighting came to the public's notice when Swiggy, a food gathering company, in early August of this year, allowed employees to work on outside initiatives for compensation or for free according to particular criteria and constraints.

In India, it's legal to hold multiple jobs without breaching the law. However, a person with a comparable set of occupations could raise worries about a breach of confidence because many employers often forbid employees from holding down more than one job in their employment contracts.

The pandemic has made people rethink the way they work

Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-62978201

Pros Of Moonlighting

 

  • Employees who work a second job may be able to supplement their income, reducing the need for salary increases from the employer.

 

  • Some side jobs are advantageous to the primary employer. It might help the company's reputation as training employees in its profession or industry if a worker develops his or her skills as a coach or teacher, for instance.

 

  • According to experts, having a second job or career might have psychological advantages, such as the sense of not being bound to one firm.

 

  • According to McKee, getting a part-time job could be a method to test the waters or improve your entrepreneurial abilities if you're considering switching careers but aren't ready to make the leap.

 

  • Employees can learn new talents through moonlighting jobs and applying them to their full-time jobs.

 

  • It may entail keeping workers who would otherwise quit, particularly if they are moonlighting in order to make a living. Forbidding this would probably result in the person leaving their position in search of one that pays more or permits them to continue working at both jobs.
  • The pandemic has made people rethink the way they work

    Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-62978201

Cons Of Moonlighting

  • You can find yourself in a precarious scenario if you work for a direct (or even indirect) rival. This is a significant problem in the software industry. Moreover, other fields where knowledge is acquired from your main company. Companies adamantly claim ownership of your intellectual property.
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  • Do you really want to work an additional 10 or 20 hours a week? Not to mention the inconvenience of commuting. Oh, and the regret of loved ones who would want to spend more time with you?
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  • Having two jobs can be stressful and prevent you from having a healthy work-life balance. For those who have a family, this might be very detrimental because they won't be able to spend time with their loved ones.
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  • The concern that they would burn out is one of the reasons why many companies view moonlighters with suspicion. Some businesses could require your constant attention, even after work hours.
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  • Even if the firm permits moonlighting, managers might not be in favor of it. Some may irately state, "We're paying this guy X and it's still not enough."
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  • Let’s now focus on knowing whether is moonlighting illegal or not in India.

Source: https://officechai.com/stories/indias-it-minister-supports-moonlighting-says-captive-models-of-companies-will-fade/

Is Moonlighting Illegal in India?

If a company's agreement stipulates non-compete and exclusive employment, as is the case with the majority of traditional employment contracts, a moonlighting job might be regarded as cheating. If the employment contracts do not contain this clause or offer exceptions, it is not considered cheating.

Dual working is not permitted under the Factories Act. IT corporations are, however, excluded from that rule in several states. Employees should carefully review their employment agreement with their primary employer to ensure adherence to any moonlighting job rules before seeking side work or launching a company.

Not only Wipro but IBM also issued a warning a few days ago over the latest business practice known as "moonlighting."

According to Mr. Rishad Premji, the Chairman of Wipro, moonlighting is a "total violation of integrity in its deepest form."

Later, when questioned about the measures undertaken against the 300 staff, he responded that in those particular cases of breach, services had been discontinued.

Leading IT companies like IBM, Infosys, and Tata Consultancy Services have all denounced moonlighting as unethical.

Contrarily, C P Gurnani, CEO of Tech Mahindra, asserted that moonlighting was OK as long as workers maintained their performance and effectiveness.

The IT and software services sector developed a remote-working approach after the pandemic hit, which enabled staff to work on other initiatives.

Employees at Infosys have been warned against breaking agreements that forbid dual employment. In an email to its staff, Infosys warned that it might result in punishment and termination. Hopefully, we have answered everything you need to know about moonlighting illegal in India.

 

Final Thoughts

By no means a novel idea, employees frequently take on additional work outside of the office in order to supplement their income, pursue their passions, develop their abilities, expand their networks, and discover more fulfilling career options. No statute in the employment laws of moonlighting in India defines this idea.

Dual employment, which is a formalized employer-employee relationship with associated legal obligations such as minimum salary, pension schemes, bonuses, etc., is not always moonlighting. It might also mean pursuing one's interests, starting a side business, or freelancing. This may occur with or without the primary company's awareness.

 

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Gunjan  Johar

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