In a growing focus on employees in their growth path, industry leaders of Indian business, such as Reliance Industries, ICICI Bank and Infosys, have raised by over one-fourth the spending on their staff.
The average employee costs for the country's top listed companies, which constitute the benchmark index Sensex, rose by about 27 % in the last fiscal ended March 31, 2011.
These companies include Mukesh Ambani-led corporate conglomerate Reliance Industries, banking giants ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank and IT majors Infosys, TCS and Wipro.
The annual staff cost for the Sensex companies, which are the leaders of their respective industries, have risen by as high as 51 % and the minimum increase has been 19 % so far, based on the yearly figures released as yet.
So far, nine out of 30 Sensex companies have disclosed their annual accounts and none of them have shown any decline in their annual employee costs for the fiscal 2010-11.
Out of these companies, the staff cost for RIL rose by 19 % to Rs 3,324 crore in the year ended March 31, 2011, while the increase was similar for ICICI Bank to Rs 4392.6 crore.
For Infosys, the increase in employee costs was 23 % to Rs 14,856 crore, while that of TCS rose by 26 % to Rs 13,726 crore. Wipro's staff cost also rose by 18 % to Rs 12,687 crore.
Among others, the staff cost rose by 29 % for Maruti, 32 % for Sterlite Industries, 25 % at HDFC Bank and 51 % at Jindal Steel and Power.
Together, the staff costs of all these companies rose by about Rs 10,000 crore or 27 % to near Rs 55,000 crore.
Incidentally, almost all these companies have posted robust profit growth figures for the fiscal and aim to continue to boost their focus on employees in their future growth plans.
According to a recent survey by global HR consultancy group Aon Hewitt, employees in India are expected to see a salary hike of 12.9 % this year, which would be among the highest in the world, as industries are benefiting from the country's robust economic growth.
Led by engineering services sector, the projected jump of 12.9 % in salaries for this year is higher than the actual increase of 11.7 % seen in 2010.
The pay hike in India is likely to be the highest in the Asia-Pacific region, followed by China (9 %) and Philippines (7 %).