‘Creating diverse workforce greatest challenge for global firms’

June 14th, 2008 - 6:10 pm ICT by IANS  


Bangalore, June 14 (IANS) Creation of diverse workforce would be the greatest challenge for corporations in a globalised world, Infosys Technologies chairman and chief mentor N.R. Narayana Murthy said here Saturday. “As corporations grow and globalise, I am convinced that the greatest challenge they will face will be the creation of a diverse workforce,” Murthy told shareholders at the company’s 27th annual general meeting (AGM) for fiscal 2008.

In a bid to address the daunting challenge, Infosys has built a global base to grow in the future, with over 91,000 employees from 70 nationalities working across 90 countries.

During 2007-08, the company recruited a record 33,177 people against its projected hiring plans for 25,000.

As a global firm with a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic workforce and delivery centres, Murthy said the IT bellwether had taken several measures to create a high-level of diversity in its workforce by enhancing its recruiting efforts in different countries.

Though Infosys receives a whopping one million job applications every year, just 2.3 percent of them are offered employment.

“We continue to hire from the best universities the world over and train them in our global education centre at Mysore in Karnataka. The first batch of graduates from Britain were hired in the last fiscal,” Murthy pointed out.

Riding on the success of its hiring and training programmes in Britain and the US, Infosys plans to extend the same to many other counties to build a world-class global workforce.

Murthy also informed the shareholders that the education centre at Mysore, about 140 km from India’s IT hub, would be one of the world’s largest such facility where 13,000 graduates can be trained at a time, with about 500 faculty rooms and 10,300 residential rooms.

On the challenges posed by global uncertainties, including rising fuel and food prices, economic slowdown worldwide and inflationary pressures on the home front, Murthy said in such a scenario, it was imperative for the management to identify changes correctly in the marketplace and respond rapidly.

Recounting the initiatives taken during the year under review, the chairman said by adopting a policy of ‘follow the sun’, the company had ensured to build delivery capability in India, China, southeast Asia, Japan, Australia, the US, Canada, Mexico, Britain, eastern Europe and Mauritius.

For fiscal 2008, Infosys has rewarded its shareholders with a special dividend of Rs.20 per share (400 percent on Rs.5 per share) for crossing $1 billion in net income for the first time under the US accounting practice.

The company has also increased the dividend payout ratio to 30 percent from 20 percent.

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