IT companies delay fresher’s joining letters.

IT companies delay fresher's joining letters


BANGALORE: Many of those who were campus-hired by IT companies last year or early this year and who expected to join soon after completing their courses in June/July, are still awaiting their joining letters.

Companies are unwilling yet to admit it publicly, but all indications are that uncertainties about IT demand in the wake of the global slowdown are compelling them to stagger their fresher joining dates over a much longer period than is normal. Some third party recruiters say the wait could go up to a year for some freshers.

`Appointment letters and confirmations are delayed. The unfriendly external environment has forced us to rework on our fresher onboarding plan. Based on quarterly reviews we will dispatch appointment letters,” said the HR head of a mid-sized IT company who did not want to be named.

Over 2 lakh final-year candidates were made offers in the past one year. The top 20 IT companies account for over 60% of these offers. This year, TCS has campus hired 40,000 students, Infosys 30,000, Cognizant 28,000, Wipro 20,000 and HCL 8,000.

The campus hiring requirement is decided based on the expected attrition rate and the flow of new projects. But both these calculations could have gone wrong for many companies. The average industry attrition has come down to 15% from 25% in the last couple of quarters. The deal pipeline is also not very encouraging as companies are not able to bag large deals of $100 million or more.

“Some 50% of the engineering graduates who passed out this year might get placed only by September 2012,” said Kris Lakshmikanth , founder & CEO, Head Hunters India. “ Lateral hiring has almost stopped, small and medium companies are badly affected,” he said.

B S Murthy, head of LeadershipCapital , said HR heads are concerned that they are not able to onboard everybody. Some candidates, he said, would get delayed joining dates, some may not get them at all.

Reva Engineering College principal R P Reddy said TCS, Wipro, Satyam and Tech Mahindra had hired from the college , but many of these hires are yet to receive the joining letters. “These students are looking at alternatives,” he said. CMRIT college said TCS and HCL had hired big numbers , but many are yet to receive joining letters.

A Bangalore college hire who was offered a job by Accenture said the company has told him and all others from his college who have been hired by the company that they could expect a joining date between October and December . “We are all quite nervous ,” he said. He completed his course in June.

When contacted, Accenture said it had not changed its timeframe for onboarding graduates and that the onboarding of their new hires started in June as per plan. “Most of them have already been onboarded and we have maintained contact with graduates to whom we made job offers. As always, client demand drives our hiring needs. We regularly review projects and recalibrate resource planning, as appropriate, to meet our clients’ needs,” a company spokesperson said.

A Wipro spokesperson, when asked about some candidates not having received joining letters, also said their onboarding is going as per plan.

Bhanushree, CEO of Talent Management Group, said the software sector is fretting over eroding margins and global economic pressure, and therefore large and medium players are likely to defer their campus hire onboarding during the current fiscal.

Wanted: 10,000 Social media experts.

jobs offered

jobs offered

KOLKATA: If you love spending time on Facebook or Twitter, you may soon land a plum job. Companies are planning to take on board social media specialists as they tap the platform to launch products, undertake consumer research and interact with customers.

Sanjay Verma, a 2010 commerce graduate, early this year landed a job at a leading BPO as executive (social media). He says his job is to create “excitement” on the Facebook page of his client, which is in the consumer electronics space. “I post updates on forthcoming product launches or the latest ones, monitor feedback from people and respond to them, and even try to look at ways to grow traffic to the page,” says Verma, who is logged on to the client’s Facebook page for nearly eight hours everyday. During his college days, Verma was an avid social networker and was always live through his mobile.

These days, he admits, he barely gets a few minutes a day to check his own Facebook page. But his is just the profile companies are eyeing. ITeS firm, 24/7 Customer, has hired over 1,000 social media experts in its facilities in Bangalore and Hyderabad over the past nine months and plans to take on another 5,000 specialists over the next one year.

Genpact this month acquired a media research firm, EmPower Research in the US, where 75% of the 360 employees are working in the social media space. Marketers like the UB Group, LG Electronics, Canon and Future Group too are forming dedicated social media teams and hiring aggressively.

“The rold of social media expert is set to become niche and specialised in India,” says Ma Foi Randstad MD & CEO E Balaji. The trend is growing in consumer-oriented sectors like aviation, retail, telecom, consumer goods, banking and financial services, he says, adding, BPOs too are hiring experts to beef up their customer service function.

Nearly 10,000 jobs for social media specialists will be created in India by 2012, according to Ma Foi estimates . In the West, hiring of social media specialists has matured over the past two to three years. America’s largest airline, Southwest Airlines has a chief Twitter officer who tracks Twitter comments and monitors a Facebook group.

Computer maker Dell made headlines last December when it launched the Social Media Listening Command Center in the US where it monitors more than 22,000 Dell-related topic posts in social media sites. The Centre has a dedicated team of more than 5,000 social media specialists who track the company, engage with consumers and even undertake customer service.

And now, Dell plans to expand such centres. In India, the demand is hotting up. While a few specialised social media marketing firms have come up over the past few years, corporates have started to hire such specialists to beef up their internal strengths.

Liquor major UB Group, whose Kingfisher page in Facebook has the second largest global following in the beer segment, has poached digital media experts from Yahoo India and other Indian websites to form a dedicated social media team.

The group is investing around 2% of its marketing budget on social media, which will be increased to 5% next year, says senior VP (marketing ) Samar Singh Shekhawat. “We want to become the largest liquor brand in social media and are now using such websites for consumer research.

For instance, before launching Heineken in India, we got 500 responses for a consumer study within two hours,” he says. Imaging company Canon is using social media to work out camera launches and even decide product colours.

“The average customer age for gadgets is 20-25 years and a lot of transactions are happening online. So, it makes sense to create a separate team for social media,” says Canon India senior vice president Alok Bharadwaj. ITeS companies too are planning to offer social media services to clients. Social media services is expected to grow at 50-80 % next year, which will lead to similar growth in hiring, says Genpact’s senior vice president (analytics & research) Pankaj Kulshreshtha . “With the explosion of activity in social media, companies are increasingly feeling the need to globally track social media conversations so as to understand consumer preferences and perceptions towards their products and services.

Social media is one of the fastest growing research domains and will create jobs,” says Kulshreshtha. One need not be a techie to join the social media teams of these companies. For instance, 24/7 Customer is looking out for young graduates with a flair for customer service, English-speaking skills and an analytical mind to understand the context of customer queries.

B-schools like the IIMs and ISB are warming up to the market demand by drafting courses on social media. ISB Hyderabad, for instance, has partnered with web product company Directi to roll out an elective, while NIIT Imperia has started an advanced programme in social media marketing.

Google ranked world’s No.1 employer.


NEW YORK: Internet search giant Google has been ranked as the best company to work for by management and engineering graduates in two separate surveys, which term the company the world’s “most attractive employer” of 2011.

According to the survey conducted by global employer branding firm Universum, Google has been ranked at the top of its 2011 list of the top 50 global businesses and engineering companies to work for — the third year in a row.

The search giant has been dubbed the most attractive employer by more than 160,000 people from Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Russia, Spain, the UK and US looking for the right place to work.

“For the last three years, we have been seeing Google leading the pack and it will take a strong player with a clear talent strategy to steal this number one spot,” Universum Head (Research and Consulting) Lovisa Ohnell said.

The search giant is followed by auditor KPMG, where most B-Schools students want to work, while engineering graduates picked tech giant IBM as their second choice.

For engineering students, software giant Microsoft is the third choice, followed by car-maker BMW (fourth), chip-maker Intel (fifth), electronics company Sony (sixth), tech firm Apple (seventh), GE (eighth), Siemens (ninth) and consumer goods group Procter & Gamble (10th).

The other technology firms that were favoured by engineers are HP, Cisco, Oracle, Nokia, Dell, and Lenovo.

“The software industry is highly dependent on its human capital, hence the efforts to attract and retain the brightest minds in the world,” Universum Global Account Director Carlo Duraturo said.

“There’s a new working culture paradigm today — the relaxed and creative office — and part of it we owe to this industry. Generation Y feels very comfortable working in this new environment and it’s clearly reflected in the attractiveness of the software industry,” Duraturo added.

Meanwhile, in the list of top 50 employers for business students, KPMG is followed by rivals PwC, Ernst & Young and Deloitte at third, fourth and fifth spot, respectively.

In addition, B-Schools students seeking the best employer ranked Microsoft sixth in the list, followed by Procter & Gamble (seventh), financial services entity JP Morgan (eighth), Apple (ninth) and financial services major Goldman Sachs (10th).

Among the other notable names in the list, soft drink major Coca-Cola figured at 12th position in the list, while Citi occupied 29th place and beverages firm PepsiCo bagged 30th place in the list for business students.