Working hard at night

Working hard at night

Negative Impact

Motivation: Lucrative allowance is one of the reasons for many youngsters to opt for night shift.

Thanks to call centres, BPOs and software companies, night shift has become part and parcel of many youngsters’ lives.

As many companies need employees working at nights to provide technical expertise or troubleshooting for clients abroad, employees have to undergo a complete changeover in their lifestyle. This has had a negative impact on a person’s sleeping pattern and eating habits.

Sukesh Manjunath, a professional, says that working in night shifts can be hard on one’s body and mind. “I work for 10 hours in a BPO and the shift changes frequently according to our clients’ requirement. Employees working in night shifts face more physical and emotional problems than day shift workers. I have seen many complaining about not being able to spend ample time with their family,” he says.

“If your spouse is working in the day shift and you are in the night shift, it impossible to see each other. One has to wait till the weekend to spend time with each other. There should be also certain amenities for those who are working in the night shift like shuttle buses, 24-hour food facility etc,” he adds. Though Harish, an accounting professional, has never worked in night shifts, he is affected by the rotational shifts of his roommates.

“Five of us are staying together in a rented house and our different working hours are creating many problems. Since I have to be in office by 5.30 am, I have to go to bed before 10.30 pm while others would have just reached home. Though I stay with my cousin, we see each other only during weekends,” he says.

Those who work on rotational shifts are exposed to health problems like acidity and hypertension.

They also have to face other problems like not being able to stay in hostels as the rules are very stringent. Nandini Rathod, a call centre employee, agrees, “Because of my night shifts, I was asked either to vacate the hostel or to change the job. It was difficult to leave my job as I was comfortable with the working ambience, my colleagues and especially the work. So, I left the hostel and shifted to my friends’ room. Also, men are not interested in marrying women who work on night shifts,” she says. Some are okay working on night shifts as they can earn more as some companies provide night shift allowances and other fringe benefits.

“Many bachelors and beginners are ready to work in night shifts for a lucrative salary package. There are many in our company who earn Rs 250 per day as night shift allowance. All their expenses are taken care by these allowances alone,” Harish says.