‘Marriage increment’: Innovative perks offered by Madurai firm to retain employees. Read here

  • The company has come up with the innovative idea of offering a free matchmaking service to its employees and a hike if they got married.

In an era of employees sticking around till the next best offer comes their way, a Chennai based I-T Firm has come up with an innovative way to retain its employees. 
Sri Mookambika Infosolutions, based in Madurai, has around 750 employees, most of who have been with the company for at least five years. It is a privately held global technology solutions provider serving clients in the US. Nearly 40% of Mookambika Infosolutions’s employees have been with the company for more than five years.
The company has come up with the innovative idea of offering a free matchmaking service to its employees and a hike if they got married. 
Yeah! That’s Right- Free matchmaking and a salary hike if you get married! That’s innovation right on point!
The I-T firm’s journey started in 2006 in Sivakasi. However, the company later moved bases to Madurai to sustain increasing number of employees it acquired. 
The company moved to Madurai in 2010, at a time when most companies in Tamil Nadu preferred a base in state capital Chennai. While Madurai offered 30% lower operating costs, the intent was to build a community and not a corporate.
The company has kept its attrition rate below 10% for several years now, while also giving a its employees a fixed 6-8% increment twice a year, a report by The Times of India said. 
Mookambika Infosolutions had in 2006 started providing special increments when an employee gets married. Then this firm also provided match making services for free. 
Speaking about the initiative, founder MP Selvaganesh said, “They (the employees) treat me like a brother and several of them are from villages, with either aged parents or lacking a proper outlook of the world and unable to fight the right match.”
He added that employees reach out to him directly when they face problems.
“We need to invest time and money to create such bonds and be honest in our approach. Not see everything from the business perspective alone,” Selvaganesh said.
“Our strength was in our giving back and belief in hard work. We knew one cannot build such a community in a Tier-1 city, where everything is commercially oriented. We chose Madurai since it matched our DNA,” says M P Selvaganesh, founder and CEO, SMI, which is clocking annual revenues close to 100 crore.
Selvaganesh himself started work in a textile mill in Tirupur, but moved into IT in Bengaluru. He eventually joined IBM, but quit to found SMI. 
Initially SMI struggled to attract talent as it was labelled a Madurai-based startup. It had to find people who matched its DNA, not those with technical qualifications alone, and empower them through in-house training. “Till our headcount reached 200, we had a tough time. Even average performers at work were given the benefit of doubt and that made them perform better later. Slowly as the team settled, we started demanding professional excellence. The results were amazing,” says Selvaganesh.
Marriage increment was there from Day One. But matchmaking happened later. “We help employees through a network of ‘alliance makers’. Weddings are the best get-togethers, the entire team hires vans and attends,” he says. 
“There are several long-term employees. We cannot take them for granted thinking they will not go anywhere. We give them their due even before any such thought comes to them,” he says.
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