Mphasis implements Microsoft’s Power Apps to keep employees safe, productive during pandemic

MPHASIS, an Information Technology (IT) solutions provider specialising in cloud and cognitive services,  has implemented Microsoft’s Power Apps to ensure the safety of its employees and maintain productivity during the current lockdown due to the pandemic.

Titled Employee Outreach, the solution tracks the health of employees and their families without compromising on privacy; enables them with work from home facilities; monitors their attendance and work hours, and resolves IT complaints, among other issues. Over 26,000 employees are using the app daily.

Microsoft Power Apps is a low-code platform for building and using custom business apps that connect to data and work across web and mobile without the time and expense of custom software development. Employee Outreach was developed on Microsoft’s Power Apps’ crisis communications template, which was released by Microsoft in March 2020. The template helps in providing organisations with the agility to innovate and use rapidly those applications that are of the essence in these unprecedented times. 

“As our employees are now working from home, it is imperative that leaders keep them informed and provide them with tools and processes that can enhance their productivity. We intend to create an easily integrated system that can track the overall health of the employees, and measure their productivity without violating their personal space,” said Nitin Rakesh, Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director, Mphasis.

According to Sashi Sreedharan, Managing Director, Microsoft India, “It is heartening to see Mphasis successfully deploy Power Apps to stay connected with its large employee base and facilitate remote working during this crisis.  Microsoft Power Platform was designed to empower everyone, regardless of their technical ability, to collaborate and solve problems fast. The idea that rapid, valuable innovation can come from virtually anywhere has never been as impactful as in the current situation.”

Ensuring employee safety: Within the Employee Outreach app, employees can access a drop-down menu with an option to share an update on their health and that of their families – before and after their work shifts. In case they report any kind of distress, an email is triggered to notify their managers and the organisation arranges the necessary support required. The simple drop-down menu ensures that there is no compromise on privacy.

Enabling and monitoring productivity: Mphasis is also using the app to ensure seamless productivity of its workforce. Using the app, employees can now select whether they are enabled to work from home or not. If they are not, the app alerts the IT team by email for a resolution. In addition to registering attendance, employees can log in their shift start and end timings; activities during the day, and breaks taken in between. The app is cognitive and can differentiate between time zones based on the location of the employees. It also successfully records cases where shifts run beyond midnight and span across two dates. 

A low code platform that enables innovation and swift deployment:  Using the crisis communications Power Apps template, a team of two developers from Mphasis created a suite of six apps in just four days.  They were able to customise it according to requirements, be it adding new features to the user interface or a custom validation screen to ensure seamless and rapid integration as it is not dependent upon any existing backend.  By developing the suite on Power Apps, Mphasis was able to remove peripheral activities during the development cycle like code and vulnerability analysis, uploading the repository, or functional testing. 

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