Several of India’s startups have already begun laying off staff in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, but its blue-chip companies are holding on — for now.
TCS, which is India’s largest software exporter, has said that it will not lay off any of its 4.5 lakh employees. The company has also said that it will also honour the commitments given to 40,000 people who have been given offers, but are yet to join the company. TCS, however, has said that it won’t give any salary hikes this year, anticipating the slowing business from the coronavirus pandemic.
“Every offer that we have made will be honoured. We do not see any retrenchments,” TCS MD and CEO Rajesh Gopinathan told reporters over a call. Its head of human resources Milind Lakkad elaborated that it has given out 40,000 offers to freshers and all of them will be onboarded as the year proceeds ahead. Typically, colleges and universities will be on till June, and then the students will start joining, he added.
But TCS also announced that it wouldn’t give out salary hikes. “We have decided not to give any salary hikes this time,” he said. Gopinathan said the company has an overall attrition of 12.1 per cent, which is one of the best in the industry and affirmed commitment to look after the employees and appreciated their commitment to the company in its hour of crisis. The company’s chief operating officer N Ganapathy Subramaniam said there are 3.55 lakh employees working in India at present, and 90 per cent of them are now connected with secure workplaces to serve clients’ needs. He also added that in the initial trends, the company has observed that productivity has increased in the new model of its associates working from home. The COO said there are many learnings for the company on various aspects, including on why to have all the associates working from a single office and others as well, which will be taken on board in the future as well.
Other IT companies have also been trying to help out employees during the pandemic. Cognizant had earlier said that it would give two-thirds of its employees an additional 25 percent of their base pay for working during the coronavirus epidemic. Several startups, though, quite don’t have the luxury of excess cash reserves to tide over this period — several companies including Treebo, Meesho, Instamojo, Travel Triangle and Shuttl have laid off employees.