The Summers of 2019: SCM at Grofers

The Summers of 2019 is a series about the various categories of roles offered by companies for summer internships. We bring to you the experiences of interns from Consulting, Finance, Marketing, General Management, Product Management, Operations, and E-commerce roles to understand a bit more about their work life. The articles are meant to give the reader a glimpse into the life of an intern, and maybe help the reader understand their own fit in that particular role.

Contributed by: Gautham Krishnan

How smooth can a transition be from Shipbuilding to an E-commerce start-up? It turns out that it can be smooth enough. Life at Grofers was exhilarating, accelerated and enlightening.  The internship started as a sneak peek into the e-commerce life and its changing dynamics. It ended with me, getting soaked in-depth about its operations and Supply chain processes and even have a fair bit of understanding towards its other verticals. It helped me realize the immense potential of the industry as well as the domain, leading to the future.

A Grocery, e-commerce-based start-up with its roots in Gurgaon, Grofers has operations in over 14 cities pan-India. The project allotted to me on scaling up the pan-India Final Mile Network Operations was the best that I could ask for to test my waters in the arena. My project involved studying existing network gaps and how the supply chain network could be tweaked, scaled up and stabilized based on a set of decisive parameters. My hands-on at Project Management and Operations helped me, but I was also able to un-learn and then learn a lot in the process.

Getting creative freedom and associated reins were the greatest positives that my workspace could offer. A flexible style-of-work, organic, in tandem with the true-blue start-ups, accessibility of the network and its various stakeholders and the copious amount of support from the colleagues at Grofers shaped the internship path. From a ground-zero observation of various points in the network to working in, and auditing, warehouse operations at 3 am in the morning, the experience was raw and wonderful. The insights gained from the mentors, who were heading the country-wide operations was immense. The amount of flexibility was so high that we could even discuss our takes on the co-interns’ project and help streamline the same. The aim was to achieve a win-win for the team.

 

Despite the near chockablock schedule, I had time to explore the sights and the heritage of Delhi, partly owing to work and partly due to the intern outings that we had planned over weekends. These had raised our levels of bonding amongst us. It was also satisfying to finally see through the monuments that had once decorated our History books. I had also allocated time to complete a professional run, for the first time, and thus one of my other checkboxes was ticked in the fray.

I was expected to have a working knowledge of the operations, out-of-the-box management skills, interactive skills, and an open mind. That amount of satisfaction that was meted out when I’d finally made that hour and a half long presentation with my inputs, recommendation, and analysis, which had a high chance to improvise the network, was immense. The team was welcoming and open to new inputs and suggestions. I’d also got to interact with the top brass of other e-commerce start-up chains as part of the project. We were also able to see and pitch in for some other cross-domain ideas for other departments at Grofers. Given a chance, I’d sure like to go back and explore more work with them again.

Gautham is a student of the PGP 2018-20 batch at IIM Bangalore.

Media Cell IIMB is the student run outreach and communication committee of IIM Bangalore dedicated to form the bridge within the student community and the outside world.

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