While Indian techies face prospects of being axed from their jobs due to growing protectionism in the US and other countries, and the information technology companies looking to placate the overseas administrations by ramping up local hiring, the UK’s government-owned Royal Bank of Scotland has planned to move hundreds of jobs to India.
Royal Bank of Scotland, the British lender, has said it will cut 443 jobs dealing with business loans and move many of those roles to India as part of its ongoing cost-cutting drive, and get the work done at lower cost.
“As we become a simpler, smaller bank, we are making some changes to the way we serve our customers,” a spokesperson for Royal Bank of Scotland said, adding, “Unfortunately, these changes will result in the net reduction of 443 roles in the UK.”
RBS has been increasingly replacing its workforce in the UK with cheaper manpower in India. Earlier last month, RBS said it would cut 250 technology-related jobs in the UK and outsource those to India. Previously, the bank had moved about 400 jobs to India last year, including about 300 roles in the investment banking division.
The move might bring some cheer to the techies in the Indian IT industry, which is under a constant squeeze from tightening of H1B visa regulations in the US, reducing client spends across the globe, shrinking margins and increasing competition. Earlier this year, India’s bellwether IT company Infosys said it would hire 10,000 people in the US, after the proposed change in visa rules sought to make it tougher and costlier to send Indian workers to the US to work alongside the client.
Meanwhile, whereas Infosys has said it would hire about 20,000 people in India this year, it is also reportedly learnt to be considering firing unspecified number of people, which it has termed ‘performance-based exits’. Global IT major Cognizant, which had a workforce of around 260,000 including 155,000 employees in India as of last year, has reportedly asked several of its senior employees to accept a severance package of up to nine months of salary and leave on a cordial note. Various reports estimate the company may let go 6,000-10,000 people.
Similarly, Wipro, India’s third-largest information technology service provider, has already sacked 300-600 employees to “align its workforce with business objectives, strategic priorities of the organisation and requirement of its clients”. Tech Mahindra, another tech giant is also seeking to trim its workforce by laying off about 1,500 employees.