Showing posts with label Layoffs in India. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Layoffs in India. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 5, 2013


Yahoo laying off 500 under-performing employees: Report

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has begun firing as many as 500 under-performing employees, All Things D's Kara Swisher reports. After joining the company in July 2012, Mayer instituted new employee performance reviews one year ago.

Now, Swisher reports, Mayer is planning to let go any employees who were rated "misses" or "occasionally misses" at least twice during the past five quarters.

Swisher says as many as 500 employees could eventually be effected. She says that some Yahoo employees are already being let go.

Yahoo has many thousands more employees than many industry experts believes it needs to have.

Before Mayer took over Yahoo, top executives there had plans to cut headcount from approximately 15,000 down to 4,000 -- though that would have involved spinning out Yahoo's search business.


Saturday, August 24, 2013

Educomp starts cost optimisation; cuts 3,500 jobs

Education solutions provider Educomp Solutions today said it has cut 3,500 jobs in the last three months and has also initiated measures to spur growth.

"Educomp has announced a slew of measures aimed at putting the company back on a growth trajectory at a time when market sentiment is adversely impacting bottom lines across industry and has pushed the education sector into negative growth territory," it said in a release.

The plan entails modifications in structure, systems and sales strategies to return the firm to profitability in the current and following fiscal. Within this transformational plan, a series of tactical steps have been identified to fast-track the correction, it added.
Source: IndiaTimes

Corporates cutting jobs to to save costs: Study

Faced with a tough economic scenario, corporates are cutting jobs and rationalising manpower to save on costs and the situation is likely to get worse in coming days, according to an Assocham study. 

"Alongwith the increasing number of corporates rushing to banks for debt restructuring, scores of them are also being forced to go in for manpower rationalising, reducing the headcount to save costs which they are unable to bear in the face of a difficult economic environment," according to the Assocham report on on Impact of Slowdown on Employment. 

The sad part is the situation is likely to become worse, rather than improve, in the weeks to come and the pain would only increase, it said. 

The companies resorting to rationalisation of manpower belong to sectors like infrastructure, gems and jewellery, educational solutions, realty, non-banking finance companies, especially in the gold-loan segment, media and public relations. 
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Dell may lay off 1,000 employees in Mohali

About 1,000 employees of American multinational Dell may lose their jobs in India over the next six months as the Texas-based computer hardware, software and services provider plans a significant rightsizing exercise for its international services business here, according to sources with knowledge of the development.

Sources say the company is planning to shut down its international services operations in Mohali which employs about 1,300 people. When contacted, a Dell spokesperson said the company does not comment on rumours or speculation. 

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Zynga to cut 30 jobs in India

Online gaming company Zynga is laying off at least 30 of its over 400 employees in India as part of a global restructuring. Globally, Zynga , creator of the once wildly popular FarmVille and City-Ville games, is laying off 520 employees, about 18% of its 3,000-strong workforce.

Zynga had not responded to a mail sent by TOI at the time of going to print, but company founder Mark Pincus's letter to employees said the layoff impact would be felt across every group in the company. The word in Zynga India is that at least 6% of the employees here would be impacted. Zynga's Bangalore centre, started in 2010, has rapidly expanded to become the company's second largest operation in the world, after its San Francisco centre. It started as a centre doing core R&D for the company. A year later started a studio that now manages multiple games, developing new content and creating new features for them.

On his first visit to India in April this year, Pincus had said India had been "a terrific investment and experience for us" . That experience and the lower costs may be the reason why the layoffs in India are limited, compared to the global cuts.

Monday, June 17, 2013

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IBM’s Layoffs Exceed 1,600 People

According to employee group Alliance@IBM, an affiliate of the Communications Workers of America union, layoffs at IBM have more than exceeded the initial estimates of 1,600 positions. These include at least 222 people from areas like marketing and 165 in semiconductor research and development.

IBM – one of the world’s largest computer services providers – has initiated a global restructuring plan, laying-off nearly 2,800 employees in North America alone. And more cuts are expected in nations like India as the company intents on spending $1 billion globally to trim its workforce.

According to the official national IBM employee’s union, the total number of lay-offs in the US as of June 15, 2013 was 2,792. But some grimly project the number of workers cut could hit upwards of 8,000 – roughly two percent of the company’s workforce. Others speculate the number to be closer to 5,000.
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IBM lays off undisclosed number of workers

IBM has laid off an undisclosed number of workers this week as the company intensifies its focus on some of some of the technology industry's hottest markets.

The cutbacks are part of a reorganization that IBM Corp. executives disclosed in April during a conference call discussing the Armonk, New York, company's first-quarter earnings. IBM said it would spend $1 billion reshuffling the types of jobs it needs in its workforce this year, with most of the changes coming before the end of June. The company indicated most of the layoffs would occur outside the US. Read More at Huff post.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Ericsson lays off 22 execs in India; to transfer another 100 to sister units

The Indian arm of the world's largest telecoms gearmaker, Ericsson, is trimming and redeploying staff as it faces lukewarm operator spends in a fiercely competitive market.

Nearly 22 executives across categories have been fired on performance grounds and another 100 are likely to be transferred to sister organisations like Ericsson India Global Services, Ericsson Supply Site Jaipur, R&D centres and the regional technical centres (RTCs) to boost efficiencies, a top company executive aware of the development.

The Swedish vendor, which nearly doubled its India workforce last year to 12,000, is also undertaking a major "people competence" mapping exer-cise in the country to weed out non-performers.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

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Experts' take on how India Inc handled layoffs

You have to look at the layoffs within the context of the fear of a global financial crisis and an impending deep recession. After our annual performance appraisal last year, we let go of about 3% of people as compared to 1.5-2 %. In a good year, when people rank poorly, they tend to leave on their own. However, that wasn't the case last year as there weren't many jobs available. It was a gut-wrenching decision, but it had to be taken. We kept people on the bench for a longer time, and doubled our investment in training and education during the period. This year we are looking at hiring about 30,000 people.

Manish Sabharwal, CHAIRMAN, TEAMLEASE:
There is a new normal in the industry as companies are realising that they can do far more with less people. When the tide was high, hiring standards had gone low and companies had started converting variable costs into fixed costs. This resulted in low productivity which came back to bite them when things got bad. Companies are still not back to hiring the way they did in the past. Over the last few months when companies say that they have been hiring, it means that they are no longer firing people. The upside to all of this however is that companies are now focussed more on quality and the productivity of the employee.

Companies often use the 'saving jobs' rationale to justify retrenchment. They say they are letting go of 500 people as a way of saving the remaining 3000 people. However, the way they have gone about doing this has left a lot to be desired. Many companies hired in the previous year based on predictions of growth, but it was a forward hedge that went wrong. Companies that fired people in a huff now find themselves in a situation where they have to go out and hire people at a far higher remuneration , and are still finding it difficult to attract the right kind of talent.

When you are trying to save an organisation, there is a very fine line be tween whether you need to do something or not. When it comes to letting go of people, there are only certain situations, when the company is faced with bankruptcy or is restructuring to avoid going under, that layoffs deemed acceptable. There is a relatively simple quid pro quo between reducing the number of people and saving costs, but has deeper implications. As you slice layers from the organisation, you lose not only the individual, but also his collective years of experience within the organisation. The employer brand also needs to be safeguarded. Layoffs, done as a first resort without compassion, have a negative impact on employee engagement among the people who are still at the firm, often leading to the best talent leaving the organisation.
Source: EconomicTimes

Monday, March 22, 2010


Siemens to axe 4,200 jobs from IT business

Diversified German conglomerate Siemens AG has said it will reduce headcount by 4,200 people from its IT business worldwide by 2011 as part of reorientation.

In a statement, the company said it would eliminate 4,200 jobs at Siemens IT Solutions and Services (SIS) worldwide by the autumn of 2011. The company currently employs about 35,000 people in its IT business globally.

Siemens Group has a good presence in India, where it provides direct employment to over 17,000 people.

Of the total number of 4,200, around 2,000 jobs would be axed in Germany, the company said without providing details for the rest of the job cuts.

"As part of the reorientation, plans call for eliminating some 4,200 of about 35,000 jobs worldwide by 2011. Roughly 2,000 of the jobs affected are in Germany," Siemens said.

Besides, Siemens is also planning to hive off its IT unit into a separate business entity.

While making job cuts, Siemens said it would "exhaust all possibilities for voluntary measures and to implement the cutbacks in as socially compatible a way as possible.

"Measures will include, for example, the termination of employment contracts by mutual consent or the non-renewal of temporary contracts. The required consultations with employee representatives will be initiated immediately," it added.

Moreover, Siemens said it would invest over 500 million euros into the SIS by 2012.

Siemens Group currently employs more than 4,00,000 people across the globe in its wide range of operations spanning from energy sector to healthcare and financial sector.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

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Wipro to hire sacked employees

If you are a pink slip recipient from Wipro, here’s a piece of good news. Wipro plans to rehire some of the employees it fired a year ago.

"Non-performance was the reason for these separations. However, we are open to rehire some of these people who were fired by us a year ago, if they come back to us with additional skill sets. A one-year window would have been enough for them to acquire some additional skills," said Joseph John, vice-president (HR) in Wipro Infotech, the business that looks at the India and Middle-East markets.

The tech major's involuntary attrition rate has gone up by 2 percentage points in the last 16 months. Wipro Infotech said it would also resume campus hiring from January. "We are looking at hiring over 1,000 laterals during the fiscal and 1,000 freshers from campuses in January," said John.

The division, which recruited 1,000 people in the first six months of the fiscal, expects hiring numbers in the second half of the year to be more than double of that.

The additional people requirement comes with Wipro winning a slew of large projects in India and the Middle-East, and also to cater to the growing requirements of existing accounts. The company hired 200 people in Saudi Arabia and Egypt recently.

Wipro is also hiring for its Global Service Management Centre in Mysore with almost 5% jobs earmarked for differently-abled people.

Wipro Infotech is planning to raise the ratio of its women employees from 13% now to 20% in the next two years. On salary hikes, John said the company had not budgeted a hike at the start of the fiscal. "But we have decided to raise salaries in the fourth quarter across the board."

Monday, October 26, 2009

Siemens says it plans job cuts, gives no details

German industrial conglomerate Siemens AG is planning job cuts "in some business areas or at some locations," its CEO was quoted as telling weekly Welt an Sonntag today.

Siemens CEO Peter Loescher said that because of the financial crisis, "some parts of our business areas have had a decline of orders by up to 70 per cent."

"In this case, one can't just stand on the sidelines and watch," Loescher said, adding that the Munich-based company had to take the necessary steps to react to the crisis.

He did not elaborate where or when the company would lay off employees or how many people would be affected.

"It will take a long time until there will be an expansion of our capacities again, like the one during the boom years of 2007 and 2008," Loescher was quoted as telling the paper.
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No pay for Satyam's Virtual Pool benchers from Dec 18

Close on the heels of the news that Mahindra Satyam will hire some 130 people, comes the announcement that it will not pay salaries to employees in the virtual pool after December 18. The employees under this virtual pool program (VPP) will, however, have the option to stay on the company’s rolls without pay till March 2010.

On June 11, the company announced the creation of the virtual pool, placing nearly 8,000 associates on the bench. "The surplus employees will be put in the VPP and paid basic salary, PF and medical insurance," Vineet Nayyar, CEO, Tech Mahindra, had said even as he ruled out any retrenchment.

In a recent email to the associates, the Satyam management stated, “We continue to recall, based on need and project requirements. However, it does appear that we may have constraints to reinstate all of those who are on VPP. Under the circumstances, we have informed our associates on VPP that we are constrained by this reality and have extended the option for them to continue on our rolls, albeit without any pay (should they choose to do so) for a further period of three months — that is, from December 18, 2009 to March 18, 2010.”

According to the news report, the VPP staff, during this period, will continue to have access to VPP services, including virtual learning and outplacement services. The official mail also said that the 'loss of pay' status would also be considered for the employees' service period.

A Mahindra Satyam spokesperson claimed that the company had absorbed about 1,500 associates from the virtual pool. The spokesperson also denied that the company was "laying off" people, even as the mail speaks of "separation of employment".

Incidentally, in the mail dated October 19, the company said, "In our earlier communication dated June 11, 2009, you were placed on VPP for a period of six months and accordingly, your Virtual Pool Leave is due to end on December 18, 2009. It is rather unfortunate that due to the continued economic constraints and business outlook, we do not anticipate that we will have the ability to recall many of our valued associates within the VPP period."

The company has a total of 34,000 associates globally.

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Mahindra Satyam may axe 5,000 benchers

The axe is haunting Mahindra Satyam staff, months after they were assured that there would not be any layoffs. On Monday afternoon, many Satyam's employees on the Virtual Pool Program (VPP) of the company were sent a formal notice of two months by e-mail.

The mail dated October 19, a copy of which is with The Times of India, reads, "In our earlier communication dated June 11, 2009, you were placed on VPP for a period of six months and accordingly, your Virtual Pool Leave is due to end on December 18, 2009. It is rather unfortunate that due to the continued economic constraints and business outlook, we do not anticipate that we will have the ability to recall many of our valued associates within the VPP period."

On June 11, the company announced the creation of the virtual pool, placing nearly 8,000 associates on the bench. "The surplus employees will be put in the VPP and paid basic salary, PF and medical insurance," Vineet Nayyar, CEO, Tech Mahindra, had said even as he ruled out any retrenchment.

However, with the six-month period of the VPP set to lapse in December, the company has served a two-month notice, as required by the employment contract, reportedly on over 5,000 employees. Sources told that the company did not have enough projects on hand and was not able to recall many associates.

A Mahindra Satyam spokesperson told that the company had absorbed about 1,500 associates from the virtual pool. The spokesperson also denied that the company was "laying off" people, even as the mail speaks of "separation of employment".

"We have given these employees an option of availing outplacement services. We will try to help them to the best of our abilities," he said.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Hiring tools used for firing

With a dip in recruitments in the face of economic slowdown, skill assessment tools have now assumed a new and more ‘structured’ role — to help companies internally gauge the capabilities of an existing employee and decide whether he should be trained further, promoted or sacked.

Though the use of these tools for recruitment purposes has taken a back seat now, their demand for internal assessment tests has gone up, said Madan Padaki, CEO of MeriTrac Services. “The ball is now in the employer’s court. He has more choices as the availability of talent in the marketplace is more,” he said.

Skill assessment solution providers are witnessing a 20 to 25 per cent increase in demand from employers for assessing their workforce despite the fact that many of them have become leaner during the downturn, said R Kannan, CEO of Assess People.

“MertiTrac has been handling 90,000-125,000 assessments a month for the past two years. The firm has noticed a sharp rise in enquiries from IT/ITeS, BFSI and retail companies during the past six months. From around 10 enquiries in a quarter, a year ago, MeritTrac has received 25 enquiries for internal assessments each during the last two quarters,” said Padaki.

“Looking at the nature of questions framed for assessment tests, it is evident that at least 25 per cent of them were used to find non-performers, which could be used for downsizing purposes. This trend started only post-October last year,” said Padaki.

Almost 60 per cent of the demand is from IT and ITeS companies.

Organisations are focusing on three areas — effectiveness of training, a framework to determine employee retention and promotion and mapping their career path.

Monday, September 14, 2009


Five cos on hiring drive for every four firing staff

The economic downturn may have led to heavy job losses in many sectors, but the situation perhaps isn't that gloomy when looking at all the industries together as an average of five companies expanded their workforce for every four cutting down on their staff size.

An analysis of regulatory disclosures about workforces made by companies in India shows that more than half of them hired employees- some in thousands and many in hundreds- even as many others pruned their employee-strength last fiscal.

Out of close to 450 companies for whom employee figures are available for the past two fiscals, the workforce grew for nearly 250 firms, according to an analysis of workforce details compiled by financial data provider Capitalline, which tracks these details from annual reports and other regulatory filings by the companies for their financials.

Together, these companies added more than 1.5 lakh employees during the latest financial year to their workforce, representing a growth of about 7 per cent from about 19.7 lakh in the previous fiscal.

However, this analysis does not take into account the changes in workforce in the current fiscal year which began in April 2009 for a majority of the companies and in January this year for some. There have been reports that many job losses have occurred in the current fiscal year also and these are not reflected in this analysis.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Foreign banks cut India count

Foreign and private banks have been cutting down on their workforce in India, according to the profile of banks that Reserve Bank of India released on Wednesday.

The report on the key financial indicators of the bank shows how banks those were on a hiring spree until 2007-08, sacked people to contain costs and improve profitability.

In the case of foreign banks, some such as Standard Chartered, HSBC and ABN Amro have cut their workforce by a few hundred numbers, while private banks, such as ICICI Bank, reduced its workforce by almost 5,500 from 40,686 employees in 2007-08 to 34,597 in 2008-09.

The economic downturn that hit major financial institutions in the country in the past year also affected banks. With the rise in non-performing assets and reducing loan growth, banks were forced to implement a series of cost cutting measures, including trimming of workforce.

According to the report, banks like HDFC and Axis have, however, been recruiting people as their total number of employees has gone up year-on-year. The report that highlights business figures of all the scheduled commercial banks showed a rise in the employee force of all the nationalised banks. Reduced workforce reflected in higher number of business and profit per employee for all the major scheduled commercial banks.

Monday, August 31, 2009

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Wipro, HCL engineers commit suicide

In the last one week two young IT engineers, one was working with Wipro and another with HCL, committed suicide. Both the engineers died by jumping from their office building.

Wipro engineer, Vishal Yadav (29), had a BE in electronics and hailed from Madhya Pradesh. Since May 17, 2004, he was working with Wipro as a Business Analyst and had gone on leave for two months. Interestingly, he had put in his papers via e-mail and was supposed to be relieved of his duties on August 31.

At around 10:20 pm on Wednesday, Vishal jumped from the top floor of S-II building of Wipro that has 12 storeys. When security supervisors heard a loud thud, they rushed to the spot and found Vishal down with blood around his body. They took him to the hospital, but it was in vain as doctor declared him brought dead. Doctor said, "With multiple head, spinal and thigh fractures, he might have collapsed within minutes after the fall."

HCL (Hindustan Computers Limited) engineer, Vikas Kumar Sharma (26), hailed from Munger district in Bihar. Since January 01, 2009, he was working with HCL as a Senior Network Analyst. He was living with a cousin in Delhi's Katwaria Sarai area. Though he was on a official off on Wednesday (August 19), he decided to report for the duty. The company cab had brought Vikas to the office around 4.30 am. Around 5.50 am Vikas jumped from the 5th floor of the office building. He was rushed to a hospital where doctors declared him brought dead.

In both the cases, Police have been trying to find the reason of the death as they could not find any suicide note or any threat related information till now. In the case of Vishal, police framed eight questions and sent them to the human resources department of Wipro, but even after 24 hours, they were unable to get any personal details of the dead man. However, an HR executive of Wipro said, "We have been directed not to reveal any information or photograph of the employee. It is just that he had quit the job and was serving the notice period."

A police officer said, "We are not ruling out murder. There are lots of unanswered questions and it is for Wipro to clear the doubts."

In the case of Vikas, Noida's Superintendent of Police (City) Ashok Tripathi said, "The company's officials did not inform the police about the incident. Authorities at Max Hospital, where the victim was taken to, informed us."

In 2009, two suicide news of big IT companies' employees came in limelight. There are many engineers who are being harassed and forced to resign from the company. Last week, one of the former Wipro employees had informed media of the way he was sacked from the company.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

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India outsourcing workers stressed to the limit

The outsourcing industry has brought jobs and prosperity to India - but, asks Saritha Rai, at what cost to workers' well being?

The cheery, chatty voice at the other end of your customer care helpline may be a stressed-out, sleep-deprived and depressed twenty-something in Bangalore.

As many young people in India's outsourcing industry are beginning to discover, underneath the heady promise of an exciting job, a good paycheck and attractive career prospects lie long spells of night shifts, ruthless targets and the dreadful monotony of writing code or pacifying angry customers.

The outsourcing industry has long been hailed as a key driver to India's rise as a global economic power. Now, that growth is beginning to take its toll on its workers who labour for long hours in stressful work environments to meet tight deadlines for customers thousands of miles away.

Workers are suffering from obesity, sleep disorders, depression and broken relationships - problems which can lead to more serious conditions such as diabetes or heart disease. In a country where a public healthcare system is virtually non-existent, overworked outsourcing employees could present a health crisis in the making.

The troubles have worsened since the start of the global economic downturn last year. Employees are now particularly worried about job security. They watch anxiously as colleagues get axed from their jobs and their own salaries get slashed.

Karuna Baskar, director at, a Bangalore-based counseling firm, says there is a recent rise in the number of workers coming in with mental issues like depression, bi-polar disorder and suicidal tendencies.

Many workers struggle to make the transition from the college campus to the office environment and find they cannot cope with the stress, says Aashu Calapa, executive vice president of human resources for outsourcing firm Firstsource Solutions. The industry loses a slice of its workers solely to work stress, he says.

Ash (not his real name), an employee with a multinational firm's captive outsourced unit in Bangalore, has just been discharged from a week's stay in the hospital. Ironically, he prides himself for being near-religious about eating correctly and getting adequate sleep and exercise.

But in the end, all it took was a schedule that went out-of-whack for a week for him to land up in the hospital with acute gastric problems. The doctors advised him to ease off alcohol and better manage work stress.

Ash, who has worked night shifts during his entire four-year career at the back office firm, believes he got away lightly.

His friends suffer from migraines, backaches, insomnia and anxiety attacks. The causes are a combination of long work hours, disrupted eating and sleeping schedules, a fondness for junk food and deadline pressure, he says.

Many outsourcing workers are in their early 20s, just out of college and in their first jobs, and often feel they are invincible. But partying, shopping and living a reckless life on new found economic freedom soon begin to take their toll.

During the weekends, to relieve a week's pressure at work and to keep up with peers, they often indulge in chain smoking and binge drinking.

Not everybody is tough enough to handle the pressure and the lifestyle. Along with health, the invariable casualty is family and relationships, says Baskar whose confidential counseling service sees a surfeit of 19- to 29-year-olds with issues like loneliness, relationship problems and marriage breakdowns.

Globalization and the outsourcing industry in particular have brought rapid and enormous changes in the culture of India cities such as Bangalore, Hyderabad and Pune. In the homes of outsourcing workers, clashes over the traditional system of arranged marriages and the working woman's domestic role are common.

The industry is concerned, says Firstsource's Calapa. Firstsource provides on-call counselors and quality checks on food served to workers - and is currently considering a proposal to offer workers options for their work hours and workdays.

Other companies are doing their bit too, providing counselors, doctors and nutritionists, as well as gym facilities and medical insurance. However, many young workers simply ignore the help available to them.

Outsourcing worker Ash looks back and rues that he entered the job market so young. He now thinks he would have liked to pursue graduate studies. But now he is in, he feels there is no quick exit from the outsourcing industry and wants to stay healthy and get ahead.
Originally posted on

Slowdown: IT's survival mantras

The prolonged slump in global technology services spending is turning out to be like a boring five-day test match than a T20 encounter.

While the green shoots hold out hope for changes in the macro environment, it’s still some time for the big deals to return to the Indian IT players, who had started getting used to them 12-18 months ago. Since the good old days of 24% annual growth, technology services export growth has dived to 4-7 %.

Despite the setback, the smarter companies haven’t buried their heads in the sand, like the proverbial Ostrich. They are working overtime, identifying niches, markets, creating new systems to get the bucks in this tough environment and prepare for better times.

Sample the action: Infosys Technologies is strengthening the front end and will hire 150 people in France and Germany as it sees these markets open up. Its Bangalore-based rival Wipro Technologies is betting on seven new focus areas, which it sees as the big businesses of tomorrow.

Similarly, Cognizant has tripled its team of consultants to 1,800 and is betting on new geographies like Japan, Australia and India. The largest services player, TCS, is increasing more work offshore and strengthening its combined ITBPO offering. And even a small company like the 5,000-people Mumbai-based Hexaware Technologies has strengthened its innovation team to develop time saving solutions for customers.

Says Suresh Vaswani, joint CEO, Wipro Technologies, “Tough times haven’t gone. We have identified seven themes which will be dominant plays in future.” These `seven wonders’ of Wipro are cloud computing, green IT, collaboration software, social computing, information management, mobility and open source.

Some of these could potentially be billion-dollar business opportunities, but Vaswani hesitates to divulge more. “Even IT, consumer care, lighting were small businesses for Wipro a decade back. Today, they are big. We see similar growth in at least some of the new areas and are consciously studying, building capability on them and making investments in these areas. For Wipro, these will be significant game changers.”

Wipro has taken a long-term view with bets on new areas that could be big businesses of tomorrow. The second largest IT company, Infosys, sees an immediate opportunity in Europe, outside the UK, which has been largely conservative in offshoring work till now.

Says Infosys CFO V Balakrishnan, “From a micro level there’s no significant change in business. Companies are struggling with spending. There are indications of things turning around by December. We are strengthening the sales front end as we see new growth coming out of France and Germany markets, where companies want to offshore to cut costs and improve systems. We are hiring here to strengthen the front end.”

The 150 people that it hires locally will be addition to the 700 people it already has in the global sales and marketing team. Besides bolstering the front end, Infosys is not ignoring the back-end either. It wants to hire more domain experts who can help create combined IT-BPO solutions for HR, as there is more demand for combined solutions rather than just IT or BPO.

Ditto for TCS, which has launched a combined IT-BPO platform in areas like life and pensions processing, HR outsourcing and is now developing platform-based offering for finance and accounting and procurement.

US-headquartered Cognizant sees an uptake in areas like healthcare, retail, logistics, media and entertainment and is integrating consulting capabilities with its global delivery of services.

Says R Chandrasekaran, president & MD, global delivery, Cognizant, “We realised early on that providing great offshore capabilities was not enough and we needed high-level business expertise combined with deep technical experience to properly serve the demands of our client base. Hence, our top-end consultants team has grown from 600 to 1,800 in over a year. We are also focusing on emerging markets like Japan, Australia, India and Middle East. Last year, our business outside the US, Europe grew 65% and we are likely to have more growth from the new markets.’’

While large companies have invested in new manpower, strengthening front end, smaller players like 5,000-people Hexaware Technologies is extracting more out of its bench and focusing on innovation. Says its executive chairman Atul Nishar, “Innovation team strength has gone up from 10 to 50 and the employee use has jumped to 75% from about 63-64 % last year. In recent months, we have developed new solutions which have helped reduce software testing time by up to 40%.”

Companies that constantly innovate, looking for those niche growth areas are likely to ride the tough time more easily. Says Partha Iyengar, regional research director, Gartner India; “If you see the recent results, HCL and Cognizant bucked the trend precisely because of agility on sales and marketing fronts. The Indian offshore model has never been more relevant for global customers than it is now. It is up to the vendors to identify the opportunity, innovate and bag the business.”
Source: indiatimes