we take our employees' career path seriously and provide them with whatever help they require to grow in the company
Before the opening of any new Domino’s Pizza store anywhere in the country, CEO Ajay Kaul himself drives the two-wheeler Domino’s delivery scooter to make sure that the pizza joint is able to keep its promise of delivering the pizza within 30 minutes. In a situation where the delivery boy is bound to give the pizza for free if unable to reach the customer within 30 minutes, Kaul first tests the waters himself to be certain that the company is not being too hard on its employees. It, therefore, comes as no surprise that Jubilant Foodworks Ltd., which holds the master franchisee rights of Domino’s in India has achieved the feat of achieving rank #24 in the Great Place to Work® Institute’s Study, and #1 in the Industry Category of the Quick Service Restaurants (QSR) sector. In an exclusive interaction with People Matters, Ajay Kaul and Basab Bordoloi, VP-HR, talk about how they managed to achieve this feat.
What makes you have a great workplace?
Ajay Kaul: It would be unfair for me to point out one particular reason for this. There is a combination of factors which contribute to Domino’s becoming an employer of choice. As we try and create an emotional bonding with our consumers, we believe in doing the same with our employees who are our internal customers. When there is an emotional connect between the employer and the employee, employee engagement happens automatically. We believe in empowering our employees as every outlet is considered as an independent unit and the outlet manager, the CEO of that unit. He/she is allowed to operate independently and take decisions related to that store. This gives them encouragement and reassures our trust in them unquestionably. It also becomes imperative for me to mention that we take our employees’ career path seriously and provide them with whatever help they require to grow in the company. Domino’s provides its employees with an environment of openness which is devoid of work politics and based on meritocracy which makes it a great workplace.
Considering the geographic spread of your organization, how do you ensure smooth execution of HR practices?
Basab Bordoloi: We’ve over 8,000 employees on board and we are located in more than 65 cities in India with over 300 company operated stores. Managing this large number of workforce with huge geographical spread is indeed a massive and challenging task. We have well structured HR teams across the country which are located region wise. Keeping in mind the geographical locations, we also have the concept of city HR, for the cities where we have grown by good numbers in terms of manpower/stores. For review and continuous support to the people at different locations, at the stores, our regional HR team does mandatory store visits in each quarter to meet the Store Managers and his/her team and review the best HR practices execution. Besides, the regional HR team store visits, the Head HR does the all India annual store visits which help in understanding the challenges and gaps if any to HR challenges and agenda.
What initiatives has your organization taken for training and development of the employees?
Basab Bordoloi: We ensure that every employee (Shift managers & above – 1,500 employees) are given at least 16 hours of behavioural training in a year based on their training needs identified every year. Also, our front line employees, (Team Members – total employee population 3,000) are given minimum eight hours of behavioural training in a year based on their TNI. For Identification of training needs, we have a unique collaborative approach in which we involve all the stakeholders to share their observation, data, facts and figures from the field and based on these, the TNI are developed. Learning & Development does not happen in our organization only through the above mentioned processes, we’ve some world class training and development opportunity through our internal Domino’s University and the ‘Learn while you earn’ schemes as well. Our internal training lingo is ‘Train Hard Fight Easy’ which means trained employees are the stepping stone for hassle free operations.