Tuesday, March 30, 2010

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Infosys to give ‘unheard of’ increments

Infosys Technologies has been seeing a churn of employees in the past three quarters. The churn began after new HR initiatives, including a career-determining programme called iRace, were started.

Several thousand dissatisfied employees have quit since October. Though no official count is available, employees put the number of exits since October at over 10,000. This has forced the company to make some changes in its HR policies. One of the changes is believed to be good salary increments this time.

Some of the other changes are: Delinking the average working hours every quarter from iRace and appraisal, and scrapping the requirement of completing two compulsory internal certification programmes.

A Hyderabad-based employee quoted the HR head, Nandita Gurjar, as saying that salary raises unheard of in the company would be given this April. Gurjar was not willing to tell Financial Chronicle the size of raises; but employees expecting hikes in the range of 5 per cent to 13 per cent.

The problem HR plan – iRace (short for Infosys role and career enhancement) – introduced last June, defines roles, competencies and proficiency requirements, while linking career movements to performance and business focus. FC had then employee apprehensions about the programme.

In the past two months, Infosys employees have been rushing to the internet, and the blogosphere, in particular, as well as the company intranet with lambasting iRace. Cartoons, videos on Youtube and fake interviews have also been posted.

This led Gurjar to post her comments on the internal blog. She said, “Of late I have noticed a disturbing trend wherein employees leaving the organisation write mails about it in disparaging terms, and existing employees take joy and pleasure in circulating these mails among themselves and even outside.”

“I feel deeply hurt when I hear of such incidences. It makes me wonder, would we behave in this way if someone spoke similarly about our friends, family or country...? At what point do we move from being a bystander enjoying the fun to be an owner who takes offence at this kind of behavior?’’

According to employees, of the over 10,000 that have quit since October, 4,000 left in February. About 1,000 e-separations were filed on the intranet on a single day: December 31. Gurjar though says that only 1,200 people quit in January, 1,104 in February; and a slightly higher number of departures were expected this month.

An employee based in Bangalore said, “iRace is the reason for the exodus. After the implementation of the programme and other policies like 9.15 hours of compulsory attendance, people now dread to work in the once dream company.”

Asked about the iRace effect, Gurjar told FC that employees had confused it with promotions and linked it to the slowdown.

“The career architecture has nothing to do with promotions and is more to do with skill mapping. Employees have to remember that promotions and hikes are a result of growth and they will grow only if the company grows. Earlier, when Infosys was growing at 40 per cent plus, raises and positions were attuned to that kind of growth. The cycles now will be more relevant to today’s growth rates,” she said.

She added that the company had now started communicating the initiative and employees were beginning to understand the positives. The employee angst notwithstanding, HR consultants feel rationalisation will continue. It could benefit both company and employees in the long run.

P Thiruvengadam of Deloitte India said, “Rationalisation of the career structure is a common phenomenon in most mature organisations. While companies are young and growing rapidly, they reward employees that way too but after they reach 20-30 years and saturate, they are more conservative.”

According to Kris Lakshmikanth of The Head Hunters India, different IT companies deal with the problem of inefficiency and excess fat in different ways. Infosys had chosen this method, which was facing trouble maybe because of the timing of its launch, he added.
Source: mydigitalfc.com


  1. If the attrition is something like 1100-1200 per month, it accounts to hardly 10% for a size of infosys & it would not have been a matter of serious concern. It also would not have called for Gurjar to post her comments in the internal blog , would not have been attracting the attention of the media quite for some time and also no need for an announcement of “unheard of increments” through media. It is obvious that the situation is uncomfortable.

    If the Govt has launched a scheme with good intentions & if people do reject it ,the scheme has to be put into cold storage. It is clear that the scheme failed to convey the right perspective to the people. It is not that, the people have either misunderstood or behaved improperly.

    Nandita & her team should understand that certain features of iRace have antagonized the employees which has lead to the massive exodus at infosys. It would be a better damage control exercise if the failure of iRace ( certain features ) is magnanimously accepted privately (within infosys) & silently given the hikes with out going public.

    Murthy,ASN , IRSSE (Retd)

  2. iRace is unacceptable at all...

  3. After Murthy and Nandan left Infosys has lost its vision. The current management is vitiating the work ethics built over years by adherence to foolish policies which have demoralised the entire staff and consequent decline in the quality of work. Unless urgent corrective steps are taken by the Board there will be irreparable damage,pulling down Infosys from the high pedestal it occupies now. With the adverse news on the company appearing in the media there is a marked reluctance of top engineers to opt for a career in Infosys.

  4. the Gurjar team should now be putting their efforts in making the employees feel free and comfortable. Employees' happy, comfortable and content implies Company's growth.

  5. Unheard of increments --- The price for thrusting iRace ???

  6. Please see youtube videos: hitlers reaction to failing certification and Nandita Gurjar in World HRD conference and read comments. There are hundreds of employee comments available on ET articles such as 'promotion strictly for performers'. Nandita has brought this pride of India to its knees. Unless she is fired, company is in deep trouble, fabulous hikes not withstanding.

  7. Gurjar & Team
    Atleast now open your eyes and react fast bfore you loose more skilled people.

  8. The I-RACE policy is abolutely useless and made the employee life hail in Infosys. Because of this many people were demoted and I was one of the victim. Altimately I resigned out of frustration. I think Infosys is not a friendly comapny after IRACE.

  9. IRACE is not a problem , but its the intension of the Gurjars that is a problem.. employee is not first to the company... all these non performing HR departments interms of $ are finding new ways of contributing to the EPS and YOY and QOQ that Infy boasts. Has it ever said the clients have appriciated 84 employees at client and offshore locations... which is waht we want to hear and what will they do for employees and how they want us to work for company rather than just communicating one monday no CAR allowance and on TUE no House Allowance on Friday 9.15 hr policy and everyday CERTIFICATION and pen pencil Service requests....

  10. This company is currently with Dogs, who only knows how to bark and bite. This people dont know how to run the company. I am surprised if the investors are not understanding what they are getting into..
    All these is happening because at the end of the day those basXDKSFJ.... / F****ers are indians and want to make as much money as possible as they know they are not going to sustain for long term.

  11. I recently got a offer from infosys.. I heard abt this IRACE and other stuff... I also received an offer from capgemini.. Fearing this IRACE I am not sure if I have to take up the offer....

  12. The HR and Finance are in General like this; assuming the role of regulator and monitor the actual bread winners. Exactly the same in many Govt Organizations also also.

    If people are enjoying making a fun at the HR policy of their own company or Quitting , the HR head shall immediately step down instead of commenting on the moral standards of a whole lot of work force.

    This only shows that People matter more for any Organization than a few 'Headless' Heads.

  13. The Gurjar and family is securing their own job by showing some work.....

    Its an universal truth that the HR department is the most useless and non productive section of every organization.

  14. That's a great news for the employees.Though it is too late but at least they thought of it.

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