The title of this article is self explanatory and this activity increases employee loyalty. Balloons of all colors floating around, water colors and pencil drawings adorning the walls., loud music and tiny tots in bright colored dresses rapping their feet to the tunes of a famous dance number; all this and more fun is taking place on the campus of an IT company in Bangalore and the tiny tots in question are the employees wards getting ready for their final day of holiday camp organized by the firm. Sounds unbelievable? Many firms understand the importance of an extended family (read: employees’ families) and the role it plays in keeping an employees engaged if the organization displays care and affection towards their spouses and kids. By organizing summer camps and various other programs, organizations are exhibiting their care towards employee kids. Not only are the kids utilizing their summer vacations constructively, but this activity also increases employee loyalty.
When holidays are about to start parents are in a dilemma because their children have long holidays and they are concerned about keeping the kids usefully occupied. Thus, the idea of having camps for employees’ kids was formed by some employers and such initiatives started around 2001 and have been organizing regularly.
Parents do not have to waste their time searching for a good place for their children. Employees can be hassle free, since they know where their kids are and what they are up to. It also increases employees’ productivity as they would not go on long leaves citing vacation, as a reason.
These camps are usually held for periods of about 15 to 60 days, for children from 3 to 15 years of age where they are taught to dance, do yoga, draw play indoor and outdoor games etc, during the camp. Most of the firms organize the timing of the camp according to the working hours of the employees, so that it is convenient for them to bring the children and also to take them back along with them. The camp is organized as a shared responsibility between members of our HR team. They are in charge to ensure the smooth functioning of the camp. They monitor participation, encouraging employees to make the best of such and opportunity and take care of the overall safety aspect on ground. To add a professional touch to the programs, employers are seeking the help of trainers from outside. Spouses of many employees do things like reading a book to the kids or telling stories to them.
During a time when firms are increasingly offering incentives that offer a balanced life of the employees, talking care of the needs of the children of the employees is a win-win situation for both, the employees and the employer. Employees are very excited as the camp is held at the office and children can be close to their parents during the long break and even have some fun of their own. Parents are at ease as their children are safe, being looked after and are convinced that their kids are putting their time to creative use. The exercise is extremely beneficial because sharing workplace with children is a unique experience and it gives children an understanding of what their parents possibly do at work and help them accept their time away from them.
Holiday camps build up the camaraderie among the employees because their children get to know one another and relationships are formed. Employees also have peace of mind as they know their child is in good hands and they need not worry about transport – they bring the child with them and take them back, at the end of the day.
Apart from holiday camps firms organize other activities also for the children of the employees to keep them occupied. Satyam is organizing a workshop on film making for the children of senior management team. Children would be trained in film making and eminent personalities from the film industry will give inputs and at the end of the week, a long workshop will be conducted.
The fact that the organizations are not alone just concerned about getting the work done from the employees but also care for their families, as it goes a long way in ensuring employees loyalty. Events in which the families are involved make the employees feel much more approachable towards the company. They feel more like a part of the company. Is also helps in retention of the employees within the company. Also it plays a major role in motivating them to work better for the betterment on themselves and their families.