Buoyed by a strong demand for outsourcing services, the country's largest software exporter Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) on Wednesday said it would hire 5,000 people more than its initial target of 45,000 this fiscal.
"We said, at the beginning of the year, that we will be doing 45,000 gross for FY'14. Given the way we have been growing and looking at the demand, we are increasing that from 45,000 to 50,000 in this year," TCS Global Head for Human Resources Ajoy Mukherjee told reporters in Mumbai.
He said the company has hired 17,362 (gross) employees during the second quarter. It had hired 10,611 people in the first quarter.
After announcing the September quarter results yesterday which showed a 34% increase in net profit to Rs. 4,702 crore, its CEO and MD N Chandrasekaran had hinted at ramping up hiring for the fiscal.
TCS' announcement to increase hiring comes amidst a series of gloomy news on the macro front, including quarterly domestic growth falling to four-year lows.
The slowdown has led many companies to 'right size' either through employee retrenchment or freezing new hiring.
However, Mukherjee said that given market conditions and some proactive initiatives it had undertaken, the company had witnessed a surge in joining ratio, which moved up from 69% to 74%.
Over 6,300 of the trainees have already joined, he said, adding that up to 19,000 of the 25,000 offers made would join during this fiscal.
Refuting media reports, he said TCS is not reneging on any of its commitments and would hire all those who have received offers.
On the hiring in the US, Mukherjee said TCS had hired 600 employees, including more than 150 trainees, in the recently concluded second quarter.
However, he refused to give a guidance on hiring in the US or comment on the US Immigration Bill, which proposes higher visa costs and increase in wages for H-1B visa holders and is likely to impact Indian software exporters.
In response to a question about a 0.40% increase in overall attrition, Mukherjee said it is a seasonal phenomenon as some employees leave for higher studies, while others exit after completion of appraisal and promotion process in July.
He said there is a scope to improve utilisation levels further, which went up to 83.4% during the quarter.
"Our historic high is 83.8%, but we can go above that as well," he said, adding that trainee utilisation has also gone up to 75% from the earlier 72.5%.
Among other initiatives, TCS plans to increase the number of employees hired from Jammu and Kashmir through its special programme with the National Skill Development Corporation to 300 by the end of the fiscal, Mukherjee said.
Of its total workforce of 2,85,250 employees, 32.5% are women, Mukherjee said, adding that women also occupy senior leadership positions, as business heads.