Life amidst the pandemic and lockdown has become a strenuous task. All of us have unfortunately become used to living on top of each other in one house and looking at the grim days ahead. At this point, it's hard to even remember what our lives used to be BC (Before Covid-19). Let's face it — there is no point in fighting the current situation. We need to accept the fact that it's going to like this for a very long time. We need to get competent with our virtual world to survive in these unprecedented times. Guess what? Most of us are handling this like a pro. People are going on virtual dates, movie nights, game nights, and so on. And what makes these events more special? Yes, GOOD FOOD!! Even though people were a bit cautious about safety and hygiene while ordering food online, apps like Zomato have managed to give topmost services throughout this period.
On March 24, PM Narendra Modi announced nationwide lockdown in light of coronavirus. Food delivery was allowed under essential services but people were quite skeptical about it. Last month, Deepinder Goyal, CEO and Founder of Zomato, published the company's annual report. According to the report, the pandemic has positively affected the health of the business and accelerated the company's journey towards profitability.
Coronavirus pandemic's positive impact on business
A spokesperson of Zomato told Indiatvnews.com that the pandemic has helped them reduce their burn rate significantly and this has made a positive impact on the health of their business. As an essential service during the lockdown, the food delivery app has served crores of customers.
The food delivery company also launched ‘Contactless Dining’ in India and eight more countries. With Contactless Dining, users can enjoy visiting a restaurant without touching any menu cards or interacting with the restaurant staff. When asked about whether this 'Contactless Dining' will work in India, the spokesperson told Indiatvnews.com: "Users will continue to be concerned about social distancing and hygiene and restaurants will need to reorganise themselves to be able to build trust with users on these fronts. However, we believe Contactless Dining will play a critical role in building confidence for post lock-down dining out. Users who have opted for dining out seem to enjoy the contactless dining experience."
However, Zomato is not just only taking measures to give high-quality services to its customer but also to its employees. On Saturday, the company announced that it would give female employees, including transgender people, up to 10 days of "period leave" per year.
Interestingly, during this pandemic, Zomato's Feed the Daily Wager campaign under the Feeding India program collected Rs. 32 crore (approx $4.2 mn) which was used to distribute over 65 million meals to the daily wager community.
According to the company, they have implemented multiple safety layers at every step of the process and will continue to ensure strict adherence to its 8 Max Safety measures. Features like contactless delivery, mandatory use of Aarogya Setu app and live order tracking have been instrumental in building trust among its users especially during this pandemic.
"We display body temperatures of our delivery partners, which is checked by our restaurant partners before handing over the order. We also share all safety measures a restaurant has implemented so that users can make an informed decision and are assured of the safety and hygiene standards of the food," the company spokesperson said.
'Training delivery partners on how to perform contactless delivery'
Zomato has been constantly educating its delivery partners on safety and hygiene practices recommended by WHO. The delivery partners also undergo virtual training sessions on how to perform contactless delivery.
"We have provided washable and reusable masks and sanitizers to all our active delivery partners. In cities where we couldn't distribute the masks and sanitizers, we asked our delivery partners to make the purchase and have reimbursed them for the same. As a part of the safe working environment, our delivery partners have to self certify that they have sanitised their masks and bags and are not suffering from any flu-like symptoms before they log in every day," the spokesperson said.
"We have also mandated our delivery partners to install and use the Aarogya Setu app. We have enabled our customers as well as restaurant partners to report to us in the unlikely event that the delivery partner is not adhering to safe delivery practices such as wearing a mask. For our partners, we are adding OPD coverage of up to Rs 5,000 so that any potential testing is not a financial burden. In case any of them does get infected by COVID-19, they are covered with insurance for any medical expenses as well as lost earnings. We are also making online doctor consultations available for our delivery partners, their family and friends," the spokesperson added.