Meesho’s Workplace Environment - What Makes It Special?

Kinnary Nensee Kinnary Nensee
Nov 22, 2022 7 min read
Meesho’s Workplace Environment - What Makes It Special?

Sanjeev Barnwal and Vidit Aatrey founded the reselling e-commerce marketplace, Meesho, in 2015 which is headquartered in Bengaluru. The marketplace gained popularity due to its ease of use and affordability. It is a marketplace that connects manufacturers to resellers. Over the years, Meesho boasts of more than 100k registered suppliers, has delivered orders to over 26,000 pin codes across 4,800 cities, and has over 15 million resellers conducting business on its platform.

As an online e-commerce market, Meesho’s environment allows an individual to establish a business without any investment. It allows such individuals to choose various commodities listed by the manufacturers and resell them to their customers through social media networks like Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp. Their product portfolio includes clothing, accessories, furniture, utensils, and cosmetics.

Meesho has raised capital through 11 funding rounds and by April 2021 joined the unicorn club. As of March 2022, Meesho was valued at USD 5 billion. Meesho is planning to raise more capital through an IPO offering in early 2023.

Meesho’s Workplace Environment
How Did It Begin?
Meesho's Boundaryless Workplace Model
Advantages of the Boundaryless Workplace Model for Meesho
Meesho's Other Employee Policies
What Makes Meesho Special?

How Meesho Makes Money?

Meesho’s Workplace Environment

Meesho Financials for FY20 and FY21
Meesho Financials for FY20 and FY21

Recently, Meesho has been in the news for announcing a boundaryless workplace model allowing their employees to work from anywhere around the globe. The Chief Human Resources Officer of Meesho, Ashish Kumar Singh said -  “Driven by our mantra to build a people-centric workplace, Meesho has always ensured employees are at the core of everything we do. We have been championing many industry-first initiatives that have redefined conventional workplace norms and this new policy is a step in that direction. We have studied multiple future-of-work models to arrive at this novel boundaryless approach. In the future, this will also give talent across the globe an opportunity to build for Bharat with Meesho.”

Singh also said that this new move has helped the company win new talent, cut attrition, and score higher on employee welfare metrics. “Cultural or employee initiatives attract the best talents from the industry,” he said.


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How Did It Begin?

As companies began recalling their workforce to the office after the completion of vaccinations, Meesho wanted to understand their mindset and needs. They received mixed reactions from their employees. Some wanted to come back permanently, others wanted to work from home while the rest preferred a hybrid model of working. Since the company was already working remotely due to the pandemic lockdowns, they had an inkling of the resultant arising issues.

Onboarding of New Recruits

Newer talents joining their ranks would find it difficult to navigate their way around new processes and people without being able to meet them personally.

Collaborative Activities

There was almost no time left for individual work or self-reflection due to long virtual meetings and discussions. The question to address was to find a way to communicate and collaborate efficiently and effectively without time-consuming meetings.

Feeling of Belonging

The physical distance caused by remote working was affecting the softer aspects of togetherness and human contact. It also affected the office culture that builds when everyone is working together.

The solution to all these issues was – A Boundaryless Workplace Model!

Meesho's Boundaryless Workplace Model

This working model was designed to resolve the abovementioned issues. Steps were taken that addressed each issue individually and resolved it to everyone’s satisfaction.

Where Are Meesho Employees Working From?
Where Are Meesho Employees Working From?

Quarterly Summits

These summits effectively resolved the onboarding issue. It allowed the teams to come together for a week every quarter at Meesho’s headquarters in Bengaluru through company-sponsored travel and stay. The week would be eventful and packed with work, team-building activities, off-sites, parties, and get-togethers. This encouraged formal and informal bonds between colleagues, enhanced collaborations and allowed the new joinees to meet, greet and understand their colleagues.

Collaborative Activities

Technology played a larger part in addressing and resolving the issues creeping in due to long virtual meetings and discussions. Coda was adopted for async interaction and feedback and Asana for team and project management async. These tech tools reduced the many overheads that usually accompany remote working style.

Increasing Productivity

The concept of “Silent Meetings” was introduced. A pre-read document was circulated before scheduled meetings for participants to be fully familiarized with the topic of discussion. It allowed the actual meeting to be focused on solutions and points of alignment. This working style keeps evolving with the introduction of new ways of working to boost productivity.

Child Daycare Facilities

Meesho management tied up with a creche aggregator platform giving their employees access to more than 1000 verified and vetted daycare facilities across the country. Also, the company provides reimbursement for child daycare facilities.

Satellite Offices

This option resolved the issue for employees who wished to work from offices. Meesho tied up with coworking space aggregating platforms to have office spaces in cities with the highest concentration of Meesho employees. This led to Meesho having satellite offices in Delhi, Noida, Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Pune, and Mumbai.

Advantages of the Boundaryless Workplace Model for Meesho

In Which Cities Do Meesho Employees (Meeshoites) Live?
In Which Cities Do Meesho Employees (Meeshoites) Live?

It has been over 6 months since Meesho implemented this new workplace model. Ashish Kumar Singh said - “Our policy addresses each of these problems by way of quarterly summits, annual “workation”, virtual real-time collaboration tools and virtual boot camps for new joiner assimilations.” Meesho’s management has observed definite advantages to their new work model.

  • A diverse geographical distribution with employees working from more than 200 tier 2/3/4 towns and cities forming 43% of their entire workforce.
  • Employees have a higher saving.
  • Many employees have used their time and money to further their passions.
  • Employees enjoy having more time to spend with their families.

Meesho's Other Employee Policies

There are a few other policies that Meesho has introduced in a bid to make their organisation employee-centric.

Inclusion

This is a core value to ensure that talent stays within the organisation. This policy of inclusion has given rise to initiatives like:

  • Gender Neutral Parental Leaves.
  • The family definition in the liberal Insurance includes LGBTQ + Live-in Partner insurance coverage under GMC.
  • Infertility Coverage of INR 1.5 lakh on IPD.
  • A gender reassignment leave for 30 days.
  • Optional leaves of 64 days that cover festivals and other special days.

Capability Enhancement Program

Employees are encouraged to pursue any interest, skill, or hobby outside of work which is fully reimbursed by the company. This is done through IDP (Individual Development Plans) where assistance is offered for full-time or part-time education, online and offline certification and personal development in terms of hobbies, language skills, and sports.

MeeSOPs Program

The MeeSOP Program allows every employee of the company, irrespective of seniority, a chance to own a part of the organisation. The MeeSOPs vest by the end of year 1, giving opting employees the opportunity and the control to cash in on Meesho’s frequent ESOP liquidation programs.

Wellness Leaves

The Infinite Wellness Leaves program offers employees the chance to take a leave for 365 days in a year in the event of a critical illness of self or a loved one or even if the employee wants that time to pursue a personal goal which is outside the scope of work. This is a step towards supporting employee health physically, emotionally, and mentally as well as positively impacting the employee’s productivity.

In the year 2021, Meesho was the first company to introduce the annual ‘Reset-and-Recharge’ 10-day post-Diwali break that allowed employees to completely unplug from work. This year saw a repeat of the same Reset-and-Recharge break for Meesho employees.


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What Makes Meesho Special?

Meesho’s people-first policies are centred around its employees. Their operating model allows them to deep dive into problems, understand them, and then focus on finding the best solution that serves all. The company’s goal is to attract the best talent in the industry and, to that end, offer an environment that is conducive to growth and productivity. Meesho’s industry-leading retention is its own testimonial to the environment that it creates for its employees.

Conclusion

As a workplace model, Meesho’s Boundaryless model is an industry first. At first, it met with some scepticism among its peers. However, as a company, it recognised the changes that were brought on by the pandemic and sought to re-invent its policies to adjust to the newer ways of working. Meesho has proven its point with aplomb.

FAQs

What is Meesho workplace model?

Meesho has a boundaryless workplace model that allows its employees to work from anywhere around the globe.

What are the key characteristics of Meesho's boundaryless workplace model?

The key characteristics of Messho's boundaryless workplace model are:

  • Quarterly Summits
  • Collaborative Activities
  • Satellite Offices
  • Child Daycare Facilities

What problems did Meesho face with remote working?

The problems faced by Meesho with having a work-from-anywhere model were:

  • Onboarding of new recruits
  • Collaboration Activities
  • Feeling of Belonging

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