Tata Consultancy Services is launching what it claims to be the first global branding campaign by one of India’s major IT services providers, in an attempt to raise its profile among potential clients and recruits.
The Mumbai-based company is spending a reported $8m to $10m over the next 12 months on a program of advertising and initiatives through which it will push the slogan Experience Certainty. The move is further evidence that India’s top software services providers are now competing on an even footing for major business with Fortune 1,000 clients against western powerhouses such as IBM and EDS.
Pradipta Bagchi, senior general manager at TCS, told Computer Business Review that the exercise is partly designed to help the company attract new recruits amid growing concerns about the ability of India’s universities to produce sufficient numbers of IT and engineering graduates to meet market demand.
According to Indian industry body Nasscom, there will be a shortfall of some 500,000 professionals in the country’s IT sector in 2010. Bagchi said: IT used to be the predominant career option for graduates, but as the Indian economy has grown, there is now a huge demand for talent from other sectors such as financial services, retail, and telecoms.
In TCS’s third fiscal quarter ended December 31, 2006, the company added 7,835 new employees to take its total headcount to 83,500. Bagchi said the company expects to recruit 23,000 new staff in the fiscal year ending March 2007, and added that the company has already made offers for 12,000 posts for the following year.
One of the ways that TCS is looking to expand its recruitment funnel is by targeting graduates from non-engineering courses. Bagchi said TCS is running a pilot program to send maths and sciences graduates on a seven-month residential training program to help them develop software programming skills. About 500 students are involved in the pilot, which he said could be broadened to 2,000 in the next financial year.
The main battleground for skills remains the university milk-rounds, but with competition for the best students intensifying, vendors are being forced to target potential recruits at an earlier age. TCS, which recruits from some 300 colleges, also looks to promote interest in the IT profession, as well its own brand, by running an annual quiz for 14-to-18-year-old students at schools in eight Indian cities.
TCS is also looking beyond its domestic market to bolster its supply of new labor. Last month, the company launched its first training center in Latin America, with a new facility in Uruguay expected to train more than 3,000 staff from across the region during the next four years.