In conversation with Mr. Deepak Prabhu Matti – Director CSR and Global Lead for Employee Volunteering Program, Cognizant
In conversation with Mr. Deepak Prabhu Matti – Director CSR and Global Lead for Employee Volunteering Program, Cognizant

By auther pic. CSRBOX

December 31, 2018

Deepak has been currently serving as the Global Head of Cognizant’s Employee Volunteering Program “Outreach” since July 2017. He has performed multiple roles in Cognizant’s CSR program in a voluntary capacity over the last 9 years. Deepak also serves as the core committee leader of Cognizant Foundation for the state of Karnataka which evaluates and funds projects in the areas of Education, Healthcare and Livelihood training. 


Commencing the conversation, Mr. Prabhu Matti stated that the vision of the organization is ‘to elevate humanity through technology and talent.’ Cognizant being an IT professional services company, it has a great competitive advantage to drive digital transformation in business initiatives as well as social initiatives. By the combination of utilizing technology, talent, and workforce, the company believes it can make a larger impact.


Talking about the Flagship CSR initiatives of Cognizant, Mr. Prabhu Matti said that the company has three main focus areas, i.e., Education, Environment and community welfare. Briefing on the education initiative, 100 to the power 4- he said, many Cognizant employees wanted to give back to the society by working with the students in Government schools. The programme aspires to make a difference in 100 schools, achieve 100 percent pass rate for class 10, 100% graduation rate and 100% employability.


The program means to influence the entire education lifecycle of students from primary school to employability.


Addressing the challenges involved, Mr. Prabhu Matti suggests that the main challenge is to gain support from the mid-level management. There’s tremendous passion in Gen Z & Y employees in regards to volunteering. But after a period of 7-8 years, the program misses having them as influencers or ambassadors due to personal commitments. The company receives great support from senior level management.


The second challenge is whether to impose certain programs on volunteers or to take support from the NGOs.


Commenting on Employee volunteering as a part of CSR, Mr. Prabhu Matti said that ‘Employee Volunteering’ is embedded in the culture of Cognizant. It was recently quoted that “Cognizant is no longer a business enterprise, we are a social enterprise”- Considering 80 percent of the volunteering happens outside of the office hours, on weekends or in evening hours.


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