How Flipkart employees are ensuring they leave no stone unturned to make ‘The Big Billion Days’ a great success
At Flipkart headquarters in Bengaluru, Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan can be seen greeting people as they enter the office.
It's not the man himself but the cardboard cutout of Big B reflects the spirit of the ongoing The Big Billion Days (BBD) sale by India’s leading ecommerce marketplace Flipkart, with its employees going the extra mile, displaying their energy and spirit to make the scale even bigger.
Flipkart’s annual festive sale has always drawn eyeballs, and this has been possible only because of the employees passionately driving the entire process - be it for those who have seen it for years or others making their debut.
Flipkart Group CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy blindfolded hits a pinata to kick off the The Big Billion Days sale at the Bengaluru headquarters
“This is my sixth BBD, and it is a time when the whole company comes together to work dedicatedly for a common goal. It gets the best out of everybody as we are always trying to break new records,” says Nandita Sinha, Vice-President, Events, Engagement, and Merchandising, Flipkart.
The poster boy of Indian ecommerce, Flipkart’s goal has always been to break new records, and this year’s BBD saw a new peak with the first day’s sales overtaking last year’s numbers, according to the company.
Festive spirit everywhere
The festive spirit was also visible at the Flipkart office, as employees were buzzing with energy and joined the spirit taking selfies with BBD banners, which were displayed very prominently.
Ishita Bhatia, Director of Private Labels, Flipkart, who has also been part of six BBDs, says, “The teams have become bigger and scale is increasing, but our job is to provide that seamless experience to customers.”
This certainly means sleepless nights for employees, but “we welcome these sleepless nights”, Ishita says.
While mattresses are made available at the office for those who would like to catch forty winks, the staff is more interested in stretching their work late into the night.
The opening day of the BBD also rang in a festive atmosphere at the Flipkart office with a flash dance by employees, and a special hip-hop theme anthem created by singer Badshah.
Employees were also eager to see what their top boss had to say. Kalyan Krishnamurthy, CEO, Flipkart Group, after addressing the employees, ensured that he did not disappoint his co-workers, and indulged in some banter in putting on a blindfold to burst open a pinata.
If the excitement was very visible even for the veterans of BBD, this was equally shared by somebody who just joined Flipkart about six months ago.
Jyothsna Singh, Manager, Books, General Merchandise, and Home, Flipkart, says, “The atmosphere is just fantastic. From the other side of the table, I used to think it is just a sale, but once you enter the system one realises how big it is here.” She likens the entire atmosphere surrounding BBD to a college fest.
Over the years, the scale of BBD has only become bigger, and the range of goods on the platform has also expanded. This year, Flipkart entered into special marketing partnership with companies as diverse as SpiceJet and Burger King to create themes around BBD.
Nandita says, “There is nervousness everywhere as we are reaching new heights in building ecommerce for the country. Just like in the past, we try and do something special or new with each edition.”
This something special also means extending the reach of ecommerce to those neitzens who are staying in Tier II and III locations, basically Bharat.
Ishita says, “Through Flipkart private labels, we are targeting those in Tier II and beyond with products of good quality at affordable price points.” This has led to good traction for Flipkart.
The preparation for BBD at Flipkart also means employees going the extra mile to make it a huge success. While the preparation begins six months in advance, closer to date, employees even skip holidays and leaves as everyone is keen to put their best foot forward.
“We were very young with our first BBD, but our leaders empowered us, and this same entrepreneurial spirit has passed on to the younger generation. The motivation has always remained high,” Nandita says.
This is also the time when employees cannot plan any personal event, be it an outing or even their own wedding. Ishita had to postpone her wedding dates as it fell around the BBD time. “Sometimes people do not understand how big BBD is, and I had to postpone my wedding dates to wait for all this to get over,” she says.
The buzz is visible, and even those who have been part of the event earlier still get the goose bumps. Flipkart employees stretch themselves with only one obsession: customer satisfaction.
It is often said that movies and cricket drive India. And this is very visible with celebrity cutouts displayed at Flipkart office - from Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni to Mahesh Babu and Dulquer Salman. The festivities have truly begun at Flipkart.
(Edited by Megha Reddy)