Article: Infosys blinks; says will add 10,000 jobs in USA

Talent Acquisition

Infosys blinks; says will add 10,000 jobs in USA

Infosys announces addition of 10,000 American jobs; emphasises its deep American presence
Infosys blinks; says will add 10,000 jobs in USA

In a move that is widely being interpreted as a pre-emptive remedy to President Donald Trump’s recent scathing attack on Indian outsourcing firms in the IT sector, Infosys has announced that it will add 10,000 in the US and set up four technology and innovation hubs there over the next two years. 

The announcement has gained currency worldwide, as it comes on the heels of two important recent developments. One, the American president signed an executive order last month that warranted a review of employment immigration laws, to promote ‘Hire American’ policies. The order suggested changes in the present structure of allotment of H-1B temporary visas – a favourite of Indian tech companies. Two, business giants from Japan and China too, have recently pledged billions of dollars, and a million jobs, respectively, to warm up to the new administration in Washington. 

Expectedly, the announcement bears no mention to the recent happenings but focuses on the company’s extensive American presence. “This development comes as part of Infosys’ continued legacy of a three-decade long investment across the U.S. In just the last 3 years, Infosys has renewed this focus by setting up an innovation hub in Silicon Valley. A unique, open environment that encourages new ways of working, collaborating, thinking and delivering breakthrough next generation project to clients. Infosys pursues its mission of inspiring children, young adults and educators to become creators of technology through its charitable foundation, Infosys Foundation USA. Since 2015, more than 134,000 students, over 2,500 teachers and almost 2,500 schools across America have benefited from high-quality computer science training and classroom equipment funded by Infosys Foundation USA...” reads the announcement. 

Vishal Sikka, the CEO, gave a personal touch to the same and said, “Having lived in the U.S. for nearly 30 years, and being a part of the incredible innovation here, I truly believe Infosys can help clients bring innovation more directly into their businesses, as they create and drive their digital transformations. We can achieve this by enhancing our ability to attract and recruit local top talent across the United States, by harnessing the global scale of Infosys, through software and platforms, and by educating and training people in the necessary skills.”

Several Indian IT companies have been at the receiving end of American critics, who blame them for beating the system to outsource massive cheap Indian labour and displace native Americans in the process. The announcement has apparently elicited a positive response from the Trump administration and is being viewed as a victory for his ‘America First’ sentiment. Ninio Fetalvo, a White House spokesperson, in a statement to The Washington Post, said, "We’re glad to see companies like Infosys see opportunity in the American economy again.” 

The announcement explains that the first set of innovation and technology hubs will be launched Indiana in August this year, and the same is expected to employ nearly 500 American workers by the next year itself, and 2,000 workers by 2021. Sceptics though have raised doubts about the numbers such announcements claims, and have questioned if the plans will actually be implemented as opposed to being intended. Similar opinions have also surfaced about the intention of the Infosys announcement, and how the future will play out. 

Amid the analysis, reading between the lines, and prediction of future moves, one thing is certain: the Indian IT industry must work off to maintain its momentum. With experts and leaders expecting other Indian IT companies to follow suit, the playing field is indisputably altered, and organisations understand the political and economic climate carefully. Battling revenue stagnation and loss of global clients, the Indian IT industry cannot afford to remain complacent; especially with developments in automation, cloud computing and analytics threatening the very existence of the industry. One should expect similar announcements from peers of Infosys, and brace up for the challenges that lie ahead. 

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Topics: Talent Acquisition, Strategic HR

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