Moonlighting — What is that!?

I came across the term “Moonlighting” yesterday. I googled and found that it means holding one or more ‘other’ jobs than the primary job.

Why did I come across this term? It was in the context of many people taking advantage of Work From Home (#WFH) options and #Moonlighting!

Is moonlighting bad? Rishad Premji of Wipro certainly thinks so. He calls it cheating.

Fun fact — recently TOI had reported about Nasscom’s regional council chair for Noida receiving a complaint that a person was holding 7 jobs in parallel — 7 jobs!!

Is this very prevalent among IT workers?

- Not really. But some do.

What steps companies can & do take to prevent their employees from moonlighting?

- Many companies have explicit contract terms and agreements that prohibit employees from holding more than 1 job at a time.

If there is a contract that prevents employees from holding more than 1 job, how are they still able to do it?

- First reason: Practicality. Yes, it’s not practical for companies to chase every employee to check if they are working for more than 1 entity. If an employee secretly works for one (or two) more organization(s), as long as their own work gets done on time and properly, most companies do not care.

The second reason: Ignorance & Trust. Most HR folks do not even think that their employees would cheat on them.

Especially now that many companies are moving towards hybrid work models (working from home part-time and working at the office part-time), we could see more people trying to make money by holding multiple jobs in parallel. It takes a lot of juggling and some do pull it off.

The Indian legal system is already overloaded with cases. So, most people who go for moonlighting will not be afraid of being sued by small or medium-sized corporations, because a protracted legal battle is not something most companies will want to or are ready for.

#Law #ITAct

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