Green Commute Is The Way Forward To Usher In ESG: UKG

Abhijeet Singh
31 Dec 2023
09:39 AM
2 Min Read

Range anxiety and high acquisition costs should not be a concern for large organisations to convert their fleet to EVs.

UKG interaction ESG mobility outlook

It empowers brands by providing them workforce attendance management solutions. And, it has its focus fixed on promoting ESG (Environmental, social and corporate governance). This cuts across all fronts – be it diversity or energy and waste management. The ESG focus also includes its latest ‘Green Commute’ employee transportation system. Since most companies are now working towards shifting their employee transportation fleets to EVs (electric vehicles), time management is an element which can be impacted by the distribution and availability of a sound charging infrastructure in place.

Mobility Outlook caught up with Sharad Parashar, International, Workspace Services, and Nitin Wadhwa, Director, Head Human Resources, at UKG (Ultimate Kronos Group), to understand the opportunities and challenges associated with green commute set-ups.

UKG is a leading provider of HR (human resources), pay-roll and workforce management solutions for all people.

“The idea stems from the fact that employee commuting is the biggest footprint that affects the environment for UKG. It started by clubbing people together in common cabs where the load on parking was saved. Then there was this shift to CNG-only power-trains, a Government-mandated one. The next logical shift to reduce carbon impact is electric-only power-trains,” says Parashar. This may sound simple. Shifting to EV is, however, a progressive move. UKG understands that merely buying EVs is not the answer. The entire valuation must be financially viable as well. It has started by acquiring 20 Tata Xpres-T EVs, which is a representation of just 4% of its entire fleet of more than 500 vehicles. This may sound less. But the numbers suggest 1800 trips done by these EVs will equate to 1.8 tonne less CO2 emissions.

“UKG had a workforce of 1,200 people in India about three- and-a-half years ago. Today, the brand has 2,600 employees. Adding more people to our organisation generates more CO2. This means that we have to be conscious of the environmental impact. This makes the commute aspect a major impact that must be considered by most organisations,” says Wadhwa.

India still has an infrastructure challenge associated with electric vehicles. The shift to green commute definitely raises range anxiety issues with corporations shifting to EV fleets. UKG has been contemplating the same problem. Nevertheless, it is ready to face the nuances faced by EV owners. “The outlook so far has been very positive. Our associated vehicle partners are very confident that they can bolster this programme for UKG without any problems. There are more areas of concern. Why not acquire the Tiago EV instead of the more expensive Xpres-T? Why not have more chargers across the routes? These will be addressed as we progress forward,” articulates Parashar.

The commute application provided by MoveInSync has also been a great benefit in time management of pick-ups and tracking of these vehicles. They assure that the system has been extremely well appreciated by the employees. UKG has been able to offer pick-ups for employees up to 55kms as the vehicle providers ensure a minimum 90% charge from the door-step. “Monsoons may be a problem for the fleet powered by any power-train, but since the EVs do not have an intake or exhaust cycle, they may be functioning better in flooded areas compared to ICE-powered vehicles,” Parashar points out.

The outlook for EV fleet for employee transportation is very positive. And, it is an effective way for organisations to reduce CO2 footprint per head. This also creates a sense of responsibility for all employees as they consider their carbon footprint on the environment.

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