New Delhi: Stay-at-home moms looking for work now have an online solution. Two women, working part-time, have created a website called Gharkamai.com designed to connect women with projects that draw upon their professional expertise but can be done outside office on a part-time or temporary basis.
“I was flying all over the place 25 days a month, but once I got married, I couldn’t keep that job,” says Kachina Chawla, who founded the website with partner Maneesha Sarin.
Drawing attention: The website’s name Gharkamai translates into ‘home earning’ and is a play on gharjamai, the Hindi word for a house husband.
The website’s name Gharkamai, which translates into “home earning”, is also a play on gharjamai, the Hindi word for a house husband.
“Lot of professional women work 9am to 8pm (on all) days but (once they) get married, have children, (they) can’t keep doing that,” says Chawla. “But they need the flexibility to still earn.” International websites, such as Elance.com and Guru.com, play matchmaker for tens of thousands of freelancers around the world. Other job portals in India offer part-time jobs within their vast repertoire. A search for a “part-time home” pulls up almost 10,000 postings on Naukri.com and around 8,000 on Monster.com.
But few websites or agencies in India specifically target the professional-turned-homemaker segment of the population. “There is a market out there, but we don’t think it’s large enough to be a viable business,” says Hitesh Oberoi, chief operating officer at Info Edge (India) Ltd, which runs Naukri.com. “Employers of people who want to hire part-time professionals don’t pay too much to list those jobs.”
The website is easy to use. After selecting a field, such as writing, design, finance or marketing and narrowing an area of focus through specific categories, a job seeker can choose an expected hourly salary, how many hours per week she is looking to work and whether or not she can work at the office. The postings are still scanty (the only job this reporter found was a construction firm looking for someone to write a company manual) but interest is high, says Chawla.
“Women have come out of the woodwork,” she says, “We got a retired IAS woman who said, ‘You know, I want to work but I don’t know what to do’ and we have women who have been housewives for 10 years but had professions before that.”