They used to be called offshore service providers. It is better to now call them global service multinationals. India's IT giants TCS, Infosys and Wipro increasingly employ local hires in a growing number of overseas offices and software delivery centres.
"The Indian IT companies are just beginning to transform into truly multinational companies. Till now they only had sales oriented staff in offshore offices. Now they have started setting up delivery centres globally just like a Microsoft or IBM. Hence with time they will hire more and more locals in offshore locations," said Pradeep Udhas, head of IT and IT-enabled service practice in India at consulting firm KPMG.
"For regions like Americas, the visa and immigration law makes it imperative for us to continue inducting local hires," said Priti Rajora, vice-president and global head for talent acquisition, Wipro Technologies.
It also helps that troubled economies in the US and Europe makes it easier to hire locals, Udhas said. The Big Three of Indian IT between them have 175 offices and centres across six continents. Wipro says it hires locally in 11 countries including Singapore, Australia, China, Japan, UK, Poland, US, Canada, Mexico, France and Portugal.
"The percentage composition of local hires (non-Indians) in the overall onsite hires hovers between 75% to 80% of our total onsite (overseas center) hires," Rajora said.
"Our numbers are driven by business needs and we expect the trend to be positive over time," said Nandita Gurjar, Infosys' HR head.
Wipro and TCS say local hires have a better understanding of their market and cultural nuances, besides local language.
Ajoyendra Mukherjee, TCS's human resources head, said even in English-speaking markets, locals were preferred.
For Infosys, local hiring is a priority. "Our strategy is to hire locally in all the geographies we are present in," Gurjar said, noting that Infosys's first overseas campus in China will have 8,000 local employees.