Source: ET Bureau
The Noida-headquartered IT firm will take a call on its annual appraisal process closer to July when it is due
HCL Technologies will not cut salaries of its 150,000 employees and will also honour promised bonuses for the previous year, the country’s third largest software services firm said, even as it looks to deal with a slowdown in IT spends because of the debilitating impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
HCL Tech had said earlier that it would honour the nearly 15,000 job offers already made to freshers.
“We haven’t seen any cancellations (of projects) but onboarding of new projects has been delayed a little. However, we are seeing a lot of green shoots; today, we have 5,000 open requirements, so we are recruiting in some areas, which are good, neutral and positive (areas),” said Apparao VV, its chief human resources officer.
Verticals such as transportation and manufacturing are facing stress, as clients are themselves facing difficult times, he added.
The Noida-headquartered company will take a call on its annual appraisal process closer to July when it is due, Apparao said.
Attrition, which is generally around 16-17%, has fallen by 50% in the last one month, he said. “So, the lateral demand might come down due to lower attrition, but the demand for freshers will remain intact. Again, these things can dramatically change if we see the pandemic peaking,” he added.
The company is also not considering reducing salaries or holding back on bonus payments, said Apparao.
“Our belief is that the bonuses that we are paying are a function of what people have delivered in the last twelve months and we should honour our commitments to our people. Even during the 2008 crisis, or other past crisis, HCL has never touched employee salaries and we are continuing with the same philosophy,” he said.
Companies in the IT-BPM sector such as Infosys, Wipro, TCS, WNS and others have delayed pay hikes and put promotions on hold as they see uncertainty over business growth across key markets.
Wipro said earlier it would evaluate multiple options to ensure jobs are retained while hiring would be significantly reduced.
While companies were finding ways to reduce costs, employees have fewer job opportunities now unlike in the past, analysts said.
“There is a fear factor as the competition hiring remains muted. And these tech companies may not have control on client decisions, but they can contain or reduce cost of operations by such measures (delaying promotions and pay hikes),” said Kamal Karanth, co-founder of Xpheno, a staffing agency.
Employee productivity has gone up by 16-17% in the last month due to the nationwide lockdown, Apparao said, adding that it was in the process of working out the details of a long term plan to enable nearly 50% of its workforce to work from home in future.
HCL Technologies grew the fastest compared to others in the top five in the previous fiscal year — at 16.7% — taking revenue to $9.94 billion. It, however, refrained from giving a forecast for the current fiscal year due to the economic uncertainty in the wake of the virus outbreak.
HCL Tech CEO C Vijayakumar said earlier that the second quarter of the current fiscal year will remain stressed, but growth will pick up in the second half of the year as clients and people return to work.