Unattainable targets, paltry incentives - Chennai's Swiggy delivery workers protest
The Swiggy executives have demanded rollback of over 20 incentives that were recently cancelled.
The food delivery executives working with Swiggy in Chennai staged a protest on Friday demanding that the food aggregator provide over 20 incentives that they alleged were recently cancelled and to reduce the target levels for workers. The high targets have resulted in mishaps as executives were forced to drive speedily to reach their targets, they alleged.
The protest by workers in Chennai also disrupted food delivery services in many parts of the city.
Speaking to TNM, a Swiggy delivery executive claimed, “Two years back, Swiggy was paying Rs 35 per delivery within four kilometres but now the company reduced the pay to only Rs 15. Swiggy also increased the daily target for workers to receive daily incentives.”
A Swiggy delivery executive, who was earning more than Rs 1,000 is able to earn only Rs 300, of which more than Rs 200 is used for petrol and food and the executives take home only Rs 100 per day, they claimed. “Instead of receiving Rs 100 from Swiggy for working for 14 hours a day, we can wash vessels and earn more than that. The company first reduced the salary and now has cut the incentives too. The incentives for long distance delivery, rain services, monthly and weekly incentives have all been reduced. Long distance incentive was reduced to Rs 5 from Rs 12 and rain allowance was also reduced to Rs 4. Overall, more than 20 different allowances have been cut by Swiggy management over the course of a few months,” he said.
Delivery executives claim that Swiggy has set a target of Rs 475 per day but the workers are unable to reach even Rs 400. “We will get orders only during the peak time around 12 pm to 3 pm and 7 pm to 9 pm. However, they will not assign orders if we reach Rs 400. They will also delay the orders after 8.50 pm and will give us the order after 9 pm so that orders after 9 pm do not come under incentive calculation,” he said.
Claiming that a Swiggy executive lost his life due to rash driving in trying to meet his targets, he said, “The company also increased the targets so that means we need to work faster within the peak hours to earn the incentives. So, this has resulted in many mishaps and a Swiggy executive even died due to the mishap.”
Another executive working in Central Chennai said, “Swiggy has reduced the number of orders given to the executives and they are diverting the orders to partner companies. Hence, we are not getting adequate targets and are going home without even earning the basic amount.”
The executives said their demand is that Swiggy should restore the previous pay and take back all the incentive cuts. Swiggy should also reduce the target. “Till the company accepts our demands or comes to negotiate with us, we are not going to give up the protest. If Swiggy is unable to pay this due to the pandemic, they can at least tell us that they are unable to pay so that we can look for alternate jobs. But they cannot keep us without pay like this for long,” the Swiggy executive in Central Chennai said.
When TNM reached out to Swiggy, the company said that it remains committed to serving the city of Chennai, while ensuring that its delivery partners have access to additional earning opportunities, incentives and benefits. “It has always been our constant endeavour to acknowledge the efforts of the executives and provide them with the best-in-the-industry fixed pay-out and incentives. These incentives are based on the duration of work and number of completed orders. Delivery partners also received 100% of all tips from customers. We specially instituted ‘Swiggy Hunger Savior COVID Relief Fund’ to provide financial protection for delivery partners through Income-Protection Insurance, sustenance support for the ones facing any hardships, and coverage for all medical /hospitalisation expenses related to COVID-19, not just for delivery partners but also their family members,” Swiggy added.