At the backdrop of a major structural change with layoffs and cost cutting that lasted most of last year, Cognizant is planning to hire again. With plans of hiring more than 20,000 digitally-skilled tech graduates in 2020, the American IT multinational giant is scaling up in India.
In 2019, the company had hired more than 200,000 employees in India and came second only to TCS in terms of campus hiring. Earlier this year, Cognizant started operations in Mangaluru in a new facility that can accommodate 1,100 employees.
“We continue to be net hirer of engineering, science, management, and other graduates as well as experienced professionals,” according to the company spokesperson. “With more and more students in campuses becoming digitally ready, we have announced a 30 percent increase in our hiring of engineering and science students for 2020.”
For Brian Humphries, CEO, Cognizant, India continues to remain an attractive market.
“The acceptance rate for offers we have made in about 100 premier engineering campuses is more than 80 percent, reflecting increased confidence in the company,” said Humphries.
Cognizant is also increasing the average compensation for campus freshers to Rs. 4 lakh per annum which is an 18 percent increase as compared to last year’s campus placements.
The drive to hire more employees who have digital skills stems from the fact that Cognizant is seeing a rise in the revenue from its digital products. With the digital revenue increasing by 20 percent as compared to last year. Therefore, the company is looking to bolster its data, digital engineering, cloud, and IoT skills.
In 2019, about 7,000 mid and senior level jobs were axed which accounted for about two percent of its global workforce. Moreover, 5,000 employees will be redeployed into other job roles.
Even though Cognizant is committed to hiring, in order to improve the cost structure of the company, they have made the decision to remove about 10,000 to 12,000 mid-to-senior level associates across the globe in the upcoming quarters, according to Karen McLoughlin, CFO, Cognizant. These layoffs are expected to shave off about $500 Mn by 2021.
The major focus area going forward for Cognizant is going to be to reskill its employees in new-age technologies. To that end, the company has doubled its investment in Cognizant Academy in 2020 with the aim to reskill about 25,000 resources within a year.
As the international IT giant refocuses its efforts towards reskilling of its existing workforce and hiring those with digital skills, there is still a long way to go for the company to come to terms with the demands of a changing world of work and skills’ demands. With an overhaul of the entire workforce, Cognizant would be able to unlock the true potential of its employees with the right kind of training and development initiatives.