While the pandemic has led to companies, across several industries, taking a beating due to the lockdown and its ensuing effects, the one sector that continues to boom in India is its IT industry. Not only are IT firms seeing some of their best results in the first quarter of FY22, but these companies are also facing an uptick in attrition rates due to a war for talent in the sector, and as lateral hires can put pressure on company margins this has led to increased hiring of new graduates. Several companies had frozen hiring in early FY21 due to the lockdown, but now many have announced hiring targets for fresh graduates in this financial year.
In June, industry body NASSCOM had said that the industry had added 1.38 lakh people in FY21 and that the top-five IT companies alone had plans to hire over 96,000 employees in FY22. Staffing firm Xpheno, in a recent report, stated that Indian IT services companies, start-ups, and product companies are looking at hiring 70,000 people across just six roles.
As per Naukri’s JobSpeak report, the IT/ITeS sector grew 5% in June 2021 compared to May 2021. “Not only did this sector continue its recent surge of 14% in May’21, but achieved an all-time high growth of 52%, as compared to pre-COVID levels in June’19. Tech hiring has remained relatively insular to the effects of the pandemic, an impact of rapid digitisation of Indian organisations,” the report said.
According to the same report, there was hiring growth in almost all regions after the May lockdown, but cities such as Hyderabad (+10%), Pune (+10%), and Bengaluru (+4%) saw an uptrend.
Tata Consultancy Services, which kicked off the earnings season this quarter, saw its workforce go up 17.3% year-on-year in the first quarter, and also saw its highest-ever quarterly net headcount addition of 20,409. Attrition was picking up, and like the others, TCS, too, expects it to go up in the following quarters.
The company had earlier reported that it would be hiring 40,000 freshers, primarily in the first and second quarter of FY22. The CEO said the company hired nearly 38,500 people during the quarter.
“Last year, we hired 40,000 associates from campuses in India, this year the number maybe even more. Similarly, in the US, we hired 2,000 employees from campuses in FY21 and the number is likely to be higher this year. The story will be the same for Latin America as well,” Chief Human Resources Officer Milind Lakkad told media persons.
Infosys announced that it would be hiring roughly 35,000 graduates in FY22, of which it had already hired 10,000 graduates in the first quarter.
The company saw a net addition of 8,334 from the last quarter and voluntary attrition during the quarter was at 13.9%.
“As the demand for digital talent explodes, rising attrition in the industry poses a near-term challenge. We plan to meet this demand by expanding our hiring programme of college graduates for FY 22 to ~35,000 globally,” said COO Pravin Rao.
Wipro, on the other hand, will be onboarding 33% more freshers in FY22, according to CEO Thierry Delaporte. In the July-September quarter alone, the firm said it intends to onboard over 6,000 freshers, which will be the highest the firm has ever done.
Wipro CHRO Saurabh Govil added, “We will be onboarding more than 12,000 freshers in FY22. 30,000 offers will be made for FY23, and are looking at 22,000-plus freshers in FY23.”
Similarly, Mindtree Chief People Officer Paneesh Rao said that the company had added 3,400 people during the quarter, and expected “both campus and lateral hires to go up in the next few quarters”.
In the same vein, L&T Infotech also added 2,300 employees in Q1FY22, and has stated it will be hiring 1.5 times the number of freshers it hired last year. In FY21, the company hired 3,000 freshers and is looking to add 4,500 freshers in FY22.
HCL Tech, which announced its results on July 19, onboarded 14,600 freshers globally last year, and this year, is looking at 20,000-22,000 freshers. In this quarter alone, CHRO Apparao VV said the company added 6,000 freshers. These new recruits, according to the company, will primarily be based in India.
HCL had a net addition of 7,522 people, with IT services attrition at 11.8%.
Companies such as Capgemini and Genpact are also reportedly looking at increasing hiring. In January, Capgemini CEO Ashwin Yardi had said the company was looking to hire 30,000 people in India in 2021, at 50:50 mix of lateral hires and fresh graduates.