Feb 6, 2009

Business - Infosys puts 2,200 employees under scanner for non-performance

NEW DELHI: The economic slowdown has made Infosys Technologies, India's second-largest IT services firm by revenues, take a harder look at employee performance. The firm has put 2,200 employees under the scanner for non-performance this year more than double the number last year, a senior executive said. Last year, about 1.5% of IT services staff or about 1,000 employees figured among the bottom performers. This year the percentage has shot up to about 3.5%. About 600 of such non-performers have left the company already this year. Such employees are put under a performance improvement plan, provided mentoring and their performance is reviewed for a quarter. "When the times were good, people got away with things. Our tolerance of non-performance has come down now," Infosys director (HR, education & research and administration) TV Mohandas Pai said. Meanwhile, the IT services major has made about 20,000 job offers to college students across the country for 2009-10. The company will honour the commitment made, Mr Pai said. However, there could be lower or even no wage increases at Infosys next fiscal. "Wage increase next year will be subdued, if there will be an increase," the Infosys director said. The IT services firm said it expects IT budgets of clients to be flat or may even reduce 5-10% next fiscal. "Clients are in pain and they want us to share the pain. Their ability to spend is lower," Mr Pai said.

IT-BPO association Nasscom on Wednesday said it expects software and services exports to grow 16-17% in 2008-09, lower than earlier expected. Mr Pai said growth rates could be even lower. "The probability that the growth rate will be lower than 16-17% is higher (than chances of it exceeding that)," he said. The company has been approached by some clients of troubled rival firm Satyam Computer Services. "Some of Satyam's clients have approached us. Kris (Infosys CEO S Gopalakrishnan) has said that we will examine such proposals and see if they fit our strategy," Mr Pai said.