By Ayushman Baruah
IT services major Cognizant Technology Solutions aims to accelerate growth in its international business, known as global growth markets, which includes markets like Australia, Japan, Middle East, and India.
“Global growth markets is about 26% of Cognizant’s revenue today. Our ambition is to grow at 20% plus in those regions. We are already growing in mid-teens, and we expect to accelerate that going forward,” Brian Humphries, chief executive officer, Cognizant said in an exclusive interview with FE.
To enable this growth, Cognizant is ‘refreshing’ its leadership team in many countries by bringing in diverse talents, Humphries said. Some of the leaders include Jane Livesey, who is the CEO for Australia and New Zealand at Cognizant and Anne-Sofie Risasen, head of Nordics at Cognizant. “We also brought in local leaders, our new head of Japan, who joined us about 18 months ago,” he said.
Also Read: Bond portfolio management to be key: Banks’ Q2 treasury losses may fall on smaller rate hike
Cognizant is complementing its strategy of renewed leadership with targeted mergers and acquisitions. “Over half of our M&As could go to international markets in the years to come. Now that we have senior people in those countries, the success is starting to be visible. Our Australian business has grown hundreds of millions in the last two years…our Japanese business is growing 20% plus,” Humphries said.
Cognizant is also strengthening its delivery capabilities internationally and expanding beyond its onshore and nearshore delivery centres.
“And India is the heart and soul of Cognizant…we will complement India with local delivery capabilities in those markets. And in the last six months, I have announced expansion of delivery capabilities in Germany, the UK, Spain and Australia,” Humphries said.
In the last few years, about 4% more of Cognizant’s delivery has happened out of India versus onshore or nearshore locations. “That is fuelled by embracing India’s talent via technical universities or otherwise,” Humphries said.
Cognizant aims to hire about 50,000 freshers in India over the next 12 months to drive this growth. On a trailing 12-month basis, the company’s voluntary annualised attrition stood at 32%, the highest in the industry. However, it aims to contain it in the coming months through better compensation and career paths.
“Last year, we paid substantially more in compensation than any time in our history…and we overhauled our promotion process and last year we actually had a 300% increase in promotions in Cognizant which really enables us to fulfil the career path ambitions of employees,” Humphries said.