IT services major HCL Technologies on Friday said it has aggressively ramped up hiring and expects to hire 20,000-22,000 freshers this fiscal as the demand for technology services continues to outstrip supply.
HCL Technologies Chief Human Resources Officer Apparao V V said the company has already added 17,500 freshers as of January 10.
"We expect it to be anywhere between 20,000 to 22,000 of freshers onboarding this year... Our talent strategy has got a big component which is freshers and we definitely are looking ambitiously at onboarding double this number next year in FY23," he added.
At the end of the December 2021 quarter, HCL had 197,777 employees with a net addition of 10,143 people.
HCL Technologies' attrition for IT services (on a past 12-month basis) was at 19.8 per cent. Attrition excludes involuntary attrition and digital process operations.
Indian IT services companies have been dealing with high attrition rates as demand for digital talent has outstripped supply, leading to what industry experts call a "war for talent".
HCL Technologies CEO Vijayakumar highlighted that the industry is facing a significant demand-supply gap.
"At HCL, while we continue to onboard experienced domain and tech specialists, our strategy will continue to lean more towards adding net new talent at scale through fresh talent.
"We are on target to achieve 20,000-plus campus hires during this fiscal, having added already more than 15,000 till date," he said.
In the December 2021 quarter, TCS has seen its attrition rate rising to 15.3 per cent in IT services from 11.9 per cent in the previous quarter. Infosys has seen voluntary attrition (last 12 months IT services) going to 25.5 per cent as against 20.1 per cent in the September quarter.
Vijayakumar said the company also expects to recruit more than 2,000 graduates over the next 2-3 years in the US, and continues to also scale its presence in countries like Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Costa Rica and Romania.
To contain attrition, HCL Technologies is undertaking a slew of measures, including stock options and better salary hikes.
Apparao said the company is investing significantly in talent and providing them long-term incentives, higher increments as well as towards upskilling and re-skilling.
"The idea is to create a stable workforce with a significant retention to all these people...also as part of our leadership development programs, we have identified almost 600 people as our next-generation leaders who over the course of next 4-5 years will take up significantly higher roles in the organisation," he said.
He added that the company is looking at what kind of interventions in terms of coaching, mentoring and upskilling need to be provided for these people to handle those roles as it goes forward.
Apparao said pointed that one of the talent strategies the company has adopted over the last five years is to identify locations where the talent is available.
"We call our approach as glocalisation, where we are making significant investments in developing talent in countries like Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Romania, Hungary, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Germany, France, Canada, Taiwan, South Korea, and Brazil.
"These are in addition to where we have reasonable scale operations like Poland, Mexico and Bulgaria. So, we have been investing in these countries to develop local talent there," he added.
On return to office, Apparao said that with the number of cases increasing, the number of employees coming to office is at around 3 per cent. Almost 90 per cent of the employees are vaccinated, he added.
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