Infosys back on campuses to hire for niche job profiles | Mint

Infosys back on campuses to hire for niche job profiles

Employees of Infosys Technologies Ltd. are seen walking around the Infosys campus.
Employees of Infosys Technologies Ltd. are seen walking around the Infosys campus.

Summary

  • Infosys had hired 51,300 fresh graduates in FY23. However, last year, it kept its distance from campuses

Infosys Ltd is back on campuses this year, reversing its previous plan to skip colleges and bringing some solace to institutes seeing a drought of recruiters.

India’s second-largest information technology (IT) services company is recruiting a select few—specializing in cybersecurity and data mining—placement executives said. The compensation is higher than what fresh graduates are offered when hired in large numbers.

Colleges are relieved even by the small number of job offers. On the other hand, analysts say, even when hiring for niche profiles, IT firms will prefer to recruit talent from campuses rather than the market as the latter will be costlier.

“Infosys is coming for a bigger segment. They are not coming for general hiring. Infosys is hiring for a software engineer’s position next month. There is no clarity on the number of freshers that they will take, but they will pay 9 lakh per annum and above," said Savitha Rani M., training and placement officer at Ramaiah Institute of Technology in Bengaluru.

Infosys had hired 51,300 fresh graduates in FY23. However, last year, the Bengaluru twins Infosys and Wipro Ltd, which together hired 208,000 engineering graduates in the last three years, had said they did not plan to go to campuses this year. Although the IT firms had built up a strong ‘bench’ while recruiting en masse in 2021 and 2022, the decision to not head to campuses for the batch of 2024 left many students in the lurch.

In IT sector parlance, a bench is made up of employees who are yet to get deployed on a project.

An Infosys spokesperson did not respond to queries.

“Infosys will come for the campus placements this year, but for niche roles. They are looking at IT specialists and will not recruit for the services roles," said A. Sridhar, dean of placements for Bengaluru’s PES University. A placement member at R.V. College of Engineering also confirmed that Infosys will visit their campus with a salary of 8-9 lakh for select roles.

Although the company, during its third-quarter results, said it is “not seeing any immediate campus requirement", analysts say it is the margin pressure that is driving IT firms to head back to campuses rather than recruit from the market.

“If Infosys has to hire experienced personnel in greater numbers to deploy in projects, it will have to shell out more money. Rather than deploying one person, the companies are looking to deploy two entry-level personnel at lower costs and get the delivery done. This is being done to reduce the pressure on the margin side because employee cost will reduce," said Omkar Tanksale, a research analyst at Axis Securities.

Infosys’ operating margin declined by 0.70 percentage point sequentially to 20.5% for the three months ended December.

Meanwhile, rivals Tata Consultancy Services Ltd (TCS), Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp. and HCL Technologies Ltd are recruiting as usual, though the numbers are expected to be lower than before, given the large bench the IT firms have already created during the pandemic years.

In fact, to reduce the time taken in deploying graduates onto client projects, TCS and Cognizant will prefer to recruit only those certified in Amazon Web Services and Oracle Java, among others, placement executives at engineering colleges said.

The IT services firms are going to the engineering campus at a time when 50-60% of the batches have been placed in global capability centres (GCCs).

While GCCs are offering 7 lakh to 10 lakh, IT firms are recruiting in bulk for 3-5 lakh packages.

In fact, competition for students with special skills will heat up as the compensation offered by GCCs and the niche profiles of IT firms for the graduates are in similar ranges.

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