Companies pool staff info in a joint database for common bus service


Gurgaon: In a first, Gurgaon’s corporates have tied up with Nasscom to promote shared transport through a common commuting database that was launched on Tuesday. The aim is provide transport options to employees who currently drive to work, thereby helping decongest city roads and also making the daily commute less stressful.

Participating companies will share employee details in a common database. Private vendors can then be arranged to set up bus services on various routes based on a ‘heat map’ of employee pick-up and drop points. Employees can avail the service for a fee. To protect identity of employees, they have been allotted unique codes.

“Partner corporates will have a common portal. Employees will get a user ID through which they can log in and check availability of buses on their routes. The human resources management or administrative heads of each employer will share information that needs to be uploaded,” said Nitin Seth, head, retail operations at Fidelity Investments.

For starters, four companies – Incedo, Snapdeal, Nagarro and Aricent – have contributed to the database that is already 10,000 strong. It includes their home and office addresses, email ID, phone numbers, gender, etc. Eight more companies are ready to join – NTT Data, Fidelity, Authbridge, Fractal Analytics, Genpact, Covergys, Teleperformance and Makemytrip – while a further 27 employers have shown interest, which is expected to raise the number of commuters to a lakh. The immediate concern, however, is security of the database which, if breached, could compromise the privacy of employees besides opening up the possibility of poaching by other firms. Saurabh Nigam, human resources manager of Snapdeal said, “To maintain the sanctity of the database, we’ve devised a de-identified format where data uploaded by one organisation is neither accessible nor visible to other organisations. They can only see how many males and females of an employer are using the service on each route.

” The open database will help corporates jointly plan their office transport efficiently, by replacing office cabs and individual cars with CNG buses. Other public transport authorities and private operators will also have access to the database, to see where opportunity to introduce new routes lie. Economies of scale will ensure most employees will be easily able to catch a bus to their offices within walking distance of their residence. For starters, Nagarro has launched 22 buses for its employees, charging each a monthly fee of Rs 1,500. “By sharing information of our commuting needs by locations, shift timings, etc, we can collaboratively create CNG bus routes that are not just viable but optimised – with minimum last mile distance for our employees to cover. Buses will have fewer stops and greater frequency, allowing flexibility in travel timings. Third party transportation service providers, or even public transporters will be allowed to use the database to improve their services,” said Manas Fuloria, CEO, Nagarro.

To ensure safety, buses will come with guards and GPS trackers. Drivers and staff will be verified by police. “We’re glad corporates have come together for this initiative. Ultimately, it’s going to benefit those who use public transport and the environment, effectively the whole society,” said Navdeep Singh Virk, police commissioner, Gurgaon.

Source: Times Of India

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