US revival triggers hiring spree in IT

Tuesday, 30 December 2003, 08:00 Hrs
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Kolkata, Propelled by a surging US economy, IT jobs are on the rise in India with this eastern metropolis appearing poised to benefit the most.

IT firms operating from the electronic complex on the city's eastern outskirts are planning a recruitment drive that could generate not just hundreds but thousands of jobs.

Besides the promise of new jobs, more companies are lining up to open operations in the city because of the low costs in this West Bengal capital and still lower attrition rates.

The recruitment drives are part of expansion plans of companies that are benefiting from higher spending on IT by countries in the West.

While big players like Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and IBM are planning a hiring spree to drive their expansion plans, smaller firms like Skytech Solutions, a joint venture between The Chatterjee Group (TCG) and United Airlines, aren't lagging behind either.

"By the end of 2004, we will have taken in 2,000 people. But in the next two months, 300 jobs are being created," said a Skytech spokesman.

IBM's newest centre, the Millennium Park, a seven-storey facility, will be ready in six months. "We are assessing our manpower requirement. We will need around 600 new hands within next six months," said an IBM official.

TCS has plans of recruiting 1,000 people over the next one year.

Wipro, which is coming up with a 2,000-seater call centre here, is also on a recruiting mode.

The Dhirubhai Ambani Knowledge City, work on which is progressing well, will also begin recruiting for its centres. Others like PricewaterhouseCoopers are also calculating their manpower requirement.

The bullish trend had been predicted by Nasscom, the umbrella platform of the IT industry.

"The good times are being driven by signs of recovery in the US economy," Nasscom chief Kiran Karnik has said.

According to Nasscom officials, IT firms are choosing Bengal because of the leftist-ruled state's changing perception of being anti-employer.

"Besides, costs and attrition rates are also determining factors," said Supratim Sen of XMLstar India.

The interest of IT investors haa been driven by the state government's aggressive policy and promise of providing all possible help.

It has enacted legislation to make IT an essential service and keep it outside the ambit of strikes. The state's IT policy envisages capturing 20 percent of India's software exports market by 2005.

Indo-Asian News Service

Source: IANS
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