Narayana Murthy's Golden Advices to the Freshers & Students in India

In the year of 2010, Narayana Murthy shared his valuable thoughts on the future of India’s young generation in an interview with

Interviewer: What would be your one valuable advice to the freshers and students in our country?

Narayana Murthy: If the students follow these valuable points in their day-to-day life, they can do wonders.

1. Always be disciplined in whatever they do.
2. They should be hard-working.
3. Commitment towards their work.
4. Should do their assignments properly.
5. Should try and understand on what is taught in the class and should apply them into real life situations.
6. Work out every single problem that was there at the end of the chapter.
7. Ask more questions in class.

Interviewer: What are your thoughts on the current availability of resource in the market and what challenges did Infosys face while hiring freshers during the recession period?

Narayana Murthy:
As recession starts, there is a huge slow down in the national economy, this eventually paves way for the decrease in job creation in IT industry. Last year, around 5,00,000 jobs were created and now it’s hardly 1,00,000 and Infosys was one of the few companies that was very keen to honour each with the commitment. Well, other companies postponed the joining date for them and causing huge confusions and uncertainty among the youngsters, hence I would say that slowing down of economy growth slows down the job creation in the country.

Interviewer: Can you tell us more about your company’s initiative called ‘Campus Connect’ to address the employability issue among freshers?

Narayana Murthy: Campus Connect was founded in 2004, with an aim to upgrade the knowledge of students coming out from the engineering colleges. We found that the graduates that came out from the colleges were mostly not well equipped to handle our requirements, as we hired from other engineering branches as well such as civil engineers, mechanical engineers, electrical engineers, and chemical engineers to become software engineers. We focused on doing two things; initially, the training period was from three to four months with an objective to train the basics of computer science, but now it has become an eight months programme. Secondly, we worked closely with the engineering colleges so that non qualifying students could be better equipped to handle the requirement of IT Company.

Interviewer: Why do you think employers emphasize on criterias like percentages? Is it because they consider students with lesser percentages are unemployable?

Narayana Murthy:
Of course not! In India, the education system does not test the learning ability; however the education scheme tests things such as how disciplined, how hardworking, how committed and how much the youngster listened to the teacher. These qualities really matter even in a company and that’s why we have to go by the criteria of marks or else we’ll have to go through huge number of applications which is literally not possible. Out of these, we will see who are smart, because being smart and disciplined can do really well in a company. But there are cases were they’re not smart but hardworking and disciplined and had done well, similarly smart people who are not disciplined and hardworking doing well. We look at the combination of smartness, hardwork, discipline and commitment, and most of these people come from the set who have good marks in academics.

Interviewer: Okay, now tell us how did you get your first job?

Narayana Murthy: I did my masters from electrical engineering specialization from IIT Kanpur. Out of the eight students who passed, we had around 50 jobs for us, so each got 3 to 4 jobs. We had the luxury of choosing the jobs at the time, as there were more jobs for people who are trained and skilled.

*Based on an interview of Narayana Murthy by in the year 2010.