French tech major Capgemini today hinted at slowing down on local hiring in the country as it has hit a peak in terms of transferring jobs from the developed markets. With some of its over 1,00,000 employees being unhappy on wage hikes, the company said “the base salaries” have grown 6 per cent this year and it will prefer to give higher wages to those with skills for the future rather than have a uniform approach.
“With 1,00,000 people, we have the kind of stature we need in India. We are not looking for more stature here,” Capgemini group chairman & chief executive Paul Hermelin told reporters at its facility here. “We’ve progressively replaced a lot of French, Dutch, Americans with Indians. Even if we are not growing that much, in India we are growing at 20 per cent (in headcount). Today, we’ve reached the level of Indian sourcing that we need,” Hermelin added. Hermelin said Capgemini is at a “cruising speed” currently, hinting that hiring will not be higher anymore.
Amid a lot of employees venting their ire on social media on low wage hikes and terming it as a way of inducing voluntary attrition, Hermelin clarified that the base salary was hiked by 6 per cent for this year. However, he clarified that they will be selective in offering salary hikes to employees. “We’ve moved from just volume that has created room for everybody to value growth. We intend to be a winner in the value race (as a company) and be at our side. We are ready to invest in you (employees) so that you are a winner personally in the value race,” Hermelin said. “If you want a good career progression, move to new skills,” he added.
Terming the acquisition of i-Gate as a success that has helped the French major to grow in the US, Hermelin said the changing IT industry landscape is posing some challenges. He said, unlike the traditional IT projects that offer the comfort of time, the new digital projects require quick turnaround that narrow the time to react. “How do you re-introduce India into that game at high speed, is the challenge,” he said. Hermelin said for Capgemini India is “on-board” in the digital journey and affirmed that they will continue to invest for re-skilling employees.
The company will be looking at new acquisitions here so as to have a better hold over skills and will not look at volume-play, Hermelin said. At present, digital counts for 42 per cent of its revenue that will keep growing higher over time as businesses undergo a transformation. Capgemini has decided to focus both on digital as well as the traditional IT piece. Hermelin, who has been at the helm for over 17 years, said he has started a succession planning process and identified two potential candidates.
Meanwhile, Capgemini India chief operating officer Ashwin Yardi said the company is creating its second innovation centre here in Hyderabad that will be inaugurated by December. The company already has 16 such centers globally which are focused on increasing the engagement with startups, academia and other key stakeholders, he said, adding plans are also afoot to take the number to 20. The upcoming Hyderabad centre will be spread over around 15,000 sqft and will house around 100 employees, he said.