6000-10000 Cognizant Employees Would Be Fired In 2017; Automation, the Reason?


Cognizan employee Firing

$14 billion worth Cognizant, which was hailed as India’s 3rd largest employer of IT professionals, the company which overtook the mighty TCS to become 2nd largest Indian IT company in 2012, has activated the layoff mode, rather sharply and vehemently.

As per various reports coming in from the IT giant, it has been found that close to 6000 to 10,000 employees of Cognizant will be terminated this year. This amounts to 2.3% to 5% of their overall employee base globally.

In India, there are 1,88,000 employees, whereas globally, there are 2.6 lakh employees.

It hasn’t been revealed yet that out of 6000-10,000 employees, how many belong to India.

How Serious Are The Terminations?

In an average annual period, around 1% of employees working in Cognizant usually leave the company (attrition), or are asked to leave after performance reviews. In 2015, 1% of their employees left the company, whereas, in 2014, 1-1.5% had chosen another job.

However, this year, the figure of 1% has increased to 2.5-5%, which is a pretty serious number. Up to 10,000 employees would be terminated, thereby creating a massive imbalance in the IT eco-system.

As per a report in ET, these terminations across various divisions of Cognizant has been mainly triggered by the invasion of automation and changing digital landscape.

Their report said, “Cognizant is said to be looking to cut roles that have become redundant due to the impact of automation on lower-end IT jobs..”

Cognizant Management Says This Is Normal

Interestingly, via their various statements issued, it seems that the management of Cognizant has played down these terminations and has expressed that it is a normal thing to do for such a large company.

In a statement issued, the company said, “As part of our workforce management strategy, we conduct regular performance reviews to ensure we have the right employee skill sets necessary to meet client needs and achieve our business goals. This process results in changes, including some employees transitioning out of the company,”

Downplaying the massive numbers of 6,000 to 10,000 employees getting axed, the company spokesperson has defined it as a ‘bounce of percentage here and there’.

The statement further said, “In any given year, the numbers may bounce a percentage here and there, but resizing our employee base is a part of our standard practice…”

Is Automation The Reason For Firing?

It seems automation and increased usage of AI in delivering their projects looks to be a major reason for the termination of up to 5% of Cognizant employees.

Karen McLoughlin, chief financial officer, Cognizant had hinted about automation removing redundant jobs when he said few days earlier: “.. And we will aggressively use automation to drive the optimisation of traditional offerings such as applications, infrastructure and process services. Some of these efficiencies will be offset by critical investments in building new digital capabilities, as well as potential pricing pressure in some traditional lines of service..”

Meanwhile Francisco D’Souza, CEO, Cognizant had said, “As agile development and the pervasive influence of technology increases, the value of colocation and a consultative approach also goes up,”

Will other IT firms also follow Cognizant in slimming down their employee-base due to automation? We will keep you updated as more details come in..

  1. Mukesh says

    CTS managers (actually damagers) be prepared for the BAD days. These are the worst lot and good-for-nothing bunch. They should be kicked out of all the IT companies. They only do politics and nothing. They do not have any technical skill set (which is the heart of technology). So, managers, please start looking for some trivial jobs outside IT industry, may be sales job in big bazar, selling mobile cards.

    1. Nick says

      Mr Mukesh, there are 1000s of manager who is very much interested in doing technical work including me. Do you know what they do in office. They sit and find project for people like you who will just badmouth in the back. I have no interest in finding a project for you but i still need to do because people like you will get fired if i don’t.

      Do you know who fights with HR to keep your job during recession?
      Do you know who fights with management to get you promotion and rating?
      Do you know who works on proposals which can potentially give u work for next 1-2 yrs?
      Do you know how many hours we spend doing non technical work to optimize the profit? Do you really think the managers will be interested in doing it?

      Let me tell you, a manager needs to do the work assigned by client in addition to doing all these non technical work like hiring, resource management, listening to your career aspirations as if we don’t have any, finding future assignments, making sure you don’t get the project into escalations, arrange training programs(i know some folks even cry if managers don’t do that), recognizing you with awards( trust me i have to write justification to get you an award) and on and on. When we finish and turn back, it will be 9 or 10 PM.

      Remember one thing, we did not started career as managers.Just because you don’t know what is happening, don’t spew venom on forum. Soon you will be in same position as us.

      Yours faithfully,
      IT Managers

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