It also plans to double its US campus hires to nearly 2,000 this fiscal, as part of an effort to reduce dependence on H-1B and L-1 work visas, which are becoming increasingly difficult to get.
“Our key strategy for building from the bottom doesn’t change. The 40,000 (in India) might become 35,000 or 45,000 — that’s a tactical call we will make,” TCS EVP & global HR head Milind Lakkad said. The move reflects the company’s view that business will bounce back in the second half of the year.
In the US, apart from engineers, TCS has also been recruiting graduates from the top 10 B-schools. It’s hiring both freshers and experienced professionals for key business roles. “Local delivery is not new to us, we just had to increase the scale,” said Lakkad. TCS has hired more than 20,000 Americans since 2014.
Lakkad described Donald Trump’s decision to suspend H-1B and L-1 work visas as unfortunate and unfair. He said it will have a short-term impact. He also said the proclamation is causing uncertainty and anxiety among their employees. “Remember, these associates help run major banks, retailers, telcos, and everyday, they are contributing to the US economy,” he said.
In India, the company has honoured all the 40,000 offers it made last year. The freshers will join beginning mid-July. Lakkad said about 87% of the 40,000 are already active on their learning platform. “Some 8,000 to 11,000 recruits undertake online assessments every week. Over 8,000 fresher recruits completed one or more digital certifications before joining,” he added. TCS is also in the process of hiring over 100 experienced professionals for different positions. This number was almost negligible in the last quarter.
TCS COO N G Subramaniam said their customers have also embraced what the company calls the Secure Borderless Workspaces (SBWS) model. From a highly centralised model, with large campuses accommodating thousands of employees, TCS is switching to an extreme form of distributed delivery.
By 2025, the plan is to ensure that employees will be able to realise their full potential without spending more than 25% of their time in a TCS office. The company, however, does not plan to offload any of its real estate assets. “We need those real estate spaces. But I think what’s interesting for us is the flexibility of the talent pool,” Subramaniam said.