IT firms on hiring mode, intakes to touch historic high

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Bangalore: After a dormant 2009, the hiring spree is back with a bang as Indian IT firms are switching over to robust recruitment mode. Amid improving global economic conditions, Indian IT players will hire a huge number of people and it may touch a historic high by the end of this year. Coming after a torpid year of hiring freeze, layoffs and salary cuts, the current recruitment drive in the IT space is led by big guys like Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and Infosys.

Surpassing the earlier target of 30,000 persons, India’s IT services major TCS is expected to hire more than 50,000 employees in this financial year. TCS follows a policy where it recruits 70 percent of its annual intake from campuses. For 2011-12, the company is going to hire 50 percent more students from college campuses. Compared to 7,522 employees in October-December 2007, TCS added 10,717 employees during the July-September quarter this year. On the back of higher demand, the company has upgraded its gross hiring target from 40,000 to 50,000. At the end of September 2010, the total headcount of the company is 1.74 lakh.

In order to battle the rising attrition, Infosys is also stepping up to its hiring plans. The company has announced to hire 40,000 employees, up from the earlier projection of 30,000. The company added 7,646 employees during the July-September quarter. The annual report of Infosys says in the previous year (2009-10), the company interviewed 61,000 people and made 26,200 job offers. Infosys had an employee strength of 122,468 by the end of the second quarter, 16 percent higher than the corresponding period last year.

Internet search giant Google has also joined the party with the announcement of its plans to hire 300 people in a bid to double its engineering headcount in India. The firm, which already has 2,000 employees in India, plans to recruit 300 engineers in couple of years to increase its presence in India with focus on cloud computing.

Mahindra Satyam, earlier known as Satyam Computer Services, is also back in the hiring market and has announced that it would hire about 9,000 employees over the next 18 months. Mahindra Satyam, which currently has over 28,068 on rolls, said it had made a conscious choice to under-utilize its employee base – currently at 71 percent – but was trying to make sure that utilization levels go up steadily in the coming quarters. As of September, 2008, Satyam, including its subsidiaries, had a headcount of over 50,000.

Courtesy the surge in India’s economy, global consulting firm Deloitte also plans to increase its staff strength by 20 percent to 18,000 by 2012 in the country. Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu’s global Chief Executive, Jim Quigley said, “As the global attention shifts towards India, and its opportunities in the new economic environment emerge in India, Deloitte with its focus on hiring, developing, and deploying the best talent in the region, will help clients capitalize on these new market realities”.

Software services provider Globallogic, which has 1,700 employees in India at present, is also planning to increase its staff headcount by 2,000 across centres in India, China and Argentina by March next year. According to Globallogic CEO Peter Harrison, half of the additions would take place in India. Wipro continued with its conservative hiring and added net 2,975 employees in the second quarter ending September 2010.

IT firms are hiring aggressively to cope with the high attrition rates as demand for experienced professionals’ returns. At TCS, the attrition rate increased marginally to 14.1 percent in July-September from 13.1 percent during the preceding April-June quarter. In case of Infosys, it went up from 15.8 percent to 17 percent.

According to analysts, increased spending on IT infrastructure and improving overseas markets for outsourcers are also among the main factors for the upbeat hiring prospects apart from high attrition level. The recovery in business environment has led IT majors to hire aggressively again. This has come after more than a year of muted hiring during the global economic downturn, as clients cut IT budgets to tide over the slowdown.

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This post was submitted by somya harsh.

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