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Infosys hires interns as tech jobs slow down

Infosys is offering paid internships to campus hires before taking them on the rolls in a move that that will affect new jobs across the sector when hiring by technology companies is already at a 10year low.

The Indian technology services sector is facing its worst growth in nearly a decade as clients reduce budgets on traditional outsourcing work, which is not being offset by growth in newer areas such as digital and cloud. In addition, routine maintenance work of customer applications or IT infrastructure, where freshers are normally deployed, have been taken over by automation or robots.

Technology firms are shifting employees from projects where jobs have become redundant and retraining them. Infosys and Wipro shifted more than 8,000 employees from projects in the previous two quarters.

“It was a surprise that they came up with the internship role before taking our students as trainees,” says the placement head of a college who did not want to be named. “The job market this year has been bad. We agreed to it as we have no option,” he added.

Infosys, a pioneer in campus recruitment, says it provides a limited number of internships that serve as an attractive proposition for potential employees.

“These are usually offered to students to whom we have made employment offers or to potential talent whom we are considering for the future,” said an Infosys spokesperson without commenting on the specifics.

The interns, who will be paid a stipend, will be assessed before being absorbed as trainees by the company. Like Infosys, other technology firms may adopt similar methods to reduce costs.

“Campus hiring by IT services firms is expected to decline by 50 per cent and offering internships is one of the methods to reduce costs when the industry is not able to create enough jobs. Not many companies will go to campus this year,” said Kris Lakshmikanth, chairman and managing director of The Head Hunters India, a specialised recruiting agency for the technology sector.

Analysts warn job seekers to gear up as India’s technology sector becomes an employer’s market. “They are creating another level to filter talent. We are not in a high-growth phase now and jobs are not as easily available,” said Pareek Jain, research analyst with HfS Research.

“If a company takes students in the final semester for a project, it is good. It is also a lesson for all engineering colleges to improve their quality because many of them are out of touch with what the industry wants. But it should be done during the final semester and not after the course,” said TV Mohandas Pai, former head of human resources at Infosys.

Source: business standard - 23-12-2016