Sleepless ahead of performance appraisal, execs flock to medical apps

  • Himani Chandna, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Feb 23, 2016 21:00 IST
(Illustration: JAYANTO)

“I think I will not get a good salary hike this year. Should I look for a new job?” “How will I field questions from my boss during the appraisal’s one-on-one session?” “What if I lose my job?”

Weeks ahead of the annual performance appraisals, professionals are getting nightmares, and bombarding health care apps and portals such as Ratan Tata-backed Lybrate,, The Minds Foundations and icliniq among others, with their stress issues.

Needless to add, the apps, which charge up to Rs 5,000 per session, are not complaining.

Traditionally, they only get to tackle love-life agonies and problems in marital life. But with appraisals looming, executives have more pressing issues to worry about than their love lives. With apps perceived as discreet and guaranteeing anonymity, professionals have been opening up since December with queries on jobs, bosses, salaries and promotions.

“Many professionals discuss their fear of layoffs, paranoid bosses, developing rivalry among colleagues and fear of poor salary hikes... We try to bring a rational approach or recommend anxiety relieving therapies and medicines,” says Shipra Dawar, CEO of the nine-month old medical portal, Around 4,000 clients are said to have used the app till date.

At Lybrate, a medical app backed by Tata Group chairman emeritus Ratan Tata, more than 1,200 queries on mental health are received every day, of which a third are related to job issues. “From December, we have seen an increase of 20% in the number of such queries and we expect it to go even higher as April approaches,” says Saurabh Arora, CEO, Lybrate, which charges anywhere between Rs 50 to Rs 5,000 for one session.

The maximum number of questions about bosses and salary hike prospects come from IT, e-commerce, insurance and investment banking professionals. While the most preferred form of consultation is the text format, video and audio calls are also chosen for elaborate discussions.

“Around 60% of our job-based consultations are done via text messages. The cost for consultations — text or audio or video — is Rs 900 for 60 minutes and Rs 300 for a 20-minute session,” says Dawar. “Two months sgo, we were getting just 5 queries in a day for professional consultancy, which has increased to 20 now.”

The typical age of professionals using these apps is 28 to 35.

“The query goes up for the age bracket of 41 to 44. Moreover, it seems that men are more under work pressure in India than women,” said Dhruv Kumar, founder of medical advice platform, iCliniq, which has tied up with 1,060 doctors for over 80 therapeutic conditions.

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