Fri, May 19, 2017 - Page 12 News List

India’s IT trade association disputes layoff reports

AFP, MUMBAI, India

India’s National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) yesterday dismissed widespread media reports of mass layoffs in the nation’s hugely important information technology (IT) industry, but warned that the sector must reinvent itself.

IT outsourcing has long been one of India’s flagship industries, but recent news reports have claimed that major companies, including Tech Mahindra Ltd and Wipro Ltd, are making thousands redundant due to increased automation.

“The numbers being reported across different sources are incorrect and are not in line with the actual employment progression,” the software trade body said in a news release.

“The industry continues to be a net hirer with talent acquisition continuing across sectors and remains one of the largest employers of the nation,” it added in the statement following a conference in New Delhi.

Several Indian newspapers, including respected business dailies such as the Economic Times and Mint, have reported major IT firms are in the process of gradually laying off thousands of staff, although the companies themselves have yet to comment on numbers.

NASSCOM said that 170,000 new jobs were created in the recently ended financial year and predicted that up to 3 million new positions would be added by 2025, but conceded that there was a slowdown in the rate of hiring.

It also called for employees to learn new skills to help companies keep up with demands for newer and more innovative technologies.

“Going forward, the focus for companies will be on skills and proficiency levels rather than scale, hence it is becoming imperative for employees [ current and potential] to skill themselves in domain specific requirements,” it said.

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