HR Buzz – April 17, 2012

RBI dismisses fears of 1991 crisis recurrence
Times of India
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) chief D Subbarao termed as "disturbing" the country's deficits and short-term debt levels, Times of India reports. He voiced these concerns at a panel discussion attended by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. India is exposed to fluctuations in oil prices, being dependent on imported oil, which it subsidises. High crude prices have affected its fiscal and current deficits in recent months, leading some economists to think a crisis may not be far. The country came close to defaulting on foreign debt payments in 1991, when the first Gulf war pushed up oil prices, leading to a depletion of foreign reserves and lower currency value. Subbarao said the economy was far more resilient now and that the probability of an "implosion" was low. Economist Raghuram Rajan said subsidies on domestic fuel must be lowered to bolster confidence in the economy.

Click here for the story from Times of India.

Infosys to hire 35,000 this year, skip wage hike
The Hindu Business Line / Mint / Financial Chronicle
Infosys will hire 35,000 staff during the current financial year, adding 13,000 to its BPO arm alone, The Hindu Business Line reports. CFO V Balakrishnan said the roles and the break-up of employees from different geographies was yet to be determined. Some 1,200 employees will be hired onsite. Infosys had hired 45,000 employees in all in the last financial year. It has chalked out a new strategy focusing on more high-end, consulting-led work backed by growth in the "non-linear" products and platforms. In line with this, the software giant would be hiring for consulting and systems integration and across other verticals, Balakrishnan said. The company would not be giving any wage hike this year. However, CEO SD Shibulal said a compensation review will be undertaken at the appropriate time, adds Mint. He also said the company has benched almost 30,000 employees, adds Financial Chronicle.

Click here for the story from The Hindu Business Line.
Click here for additional coverage from Mint.
Click here for additional coverage from Financial Chronicle.

China power firm to create 10,000 jobs in India
Financial Express
Power Construction Corp. of China has secured a $2.4 billion contract to build a coal-fired power complex in southern India, Financial Express reports. This is the second phase of the project for India's Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS). The project is expected to meet soaring local demand for electricity. It will include the addition of four generators each with a capacity of 660 megawatts. It said the project will create more than 10,000 jobs in India. Power equipment made in China will be used. China has increased its presence in the power project construction space, particularly in developing countries. The country is leveraging its experience and technology, acquired through three decades of economic boom, and receiving aid from the state. IL&FS plans to sell power from the project to state-run distribution companies on a long-term basis as well as in the open market.

Click here for the story from Financial Express.

Distance education, a growth story for B-schools
Financial Chronicle
Advances in communication technology are helping management schools provide quality education at affordable prices, Financial Chronicle reports. The business education market in India is estimated at Rs 5,000 crore, says Swaminathan K, founder and CEO of myBskool.com. The distance education model, as opposed to class-room teaching, is catching on fast. Almost all premium B-schools are offering executive programmes using technology such as V-SAT, telepresence and HD video conferencing. Students can attend live lectures from the faculty of the schools in designated study centres. The biggest benefit for students is they can become alumni of the respective organisations and have access to study materials even after they complete their course, says professor Anindya Sen of Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Calcutta. He is director of several long-distance programmes conducted by the schools. Cost is the other huge advantage. While the in-campus programme comes at Rs 4.5 lakh, the remote delivery model is about Rs 1.5 lakh.

Click here for the story from Financial Chronicle.

Zensar: Business confidence is up in India, U.S.
Financial Express
The last quarter of 2011-12 has eased fears of a double recession and restored confidence in India and the U.S., says Zensar Technologies CEO Ganesh Natarajan in a Financial Express report. Tech unemployment has almost disappeared in the U.S., and both Indian and U.S. firms have increased their local recruitment drives. CIOs are discussing new ways of reaching out to customers and optimise supply chains. Organisations are expected to accelerate their spending on enterprise social media and mobility. More demand for better offshore services with business inflows not just from the West, but also Australia, Asia, Middle East and Africa, is likely to happen. Entrepreneurship may gain momentum as confidence rises among both U.S. and international students look to set up tech entrepreneurial ventures. The sentiment is that the ecosystem support exists to give them a fair chance of success.

Click here for the story from Financial Express.

Globalisation stokes demand for language experts
Business Standard
Demand for language specialists is growing in telecom, e-commerce, investment companies and foreign banks, Business Standard reports. Earlier, only software companies recruited language experts, says Madhubala Vaidyanathan, general manager (services), TeamLease Services. Now, a large number of companies in travel and tourism, shipping, hotels, foreign banks, investment, e-commerce and even education (tutors) are looking to hire them. With more Indian companies venturing into the non-English European and Asian markets, the trend is likely to grow. Language capabilities and multilingual language skills within the organisation have become prerequisites for success, in this rapidly globalising world, according to an HCL spokesperson. The most popular languages are French, Spanish, Portuguese, Greek and German. Mandarin, Japanese and Korean are also becoming popular. Typically, a language specialist with about three years of experience can expect to earn approximately Rs 7 lakh per annum.

Click here for the story from Business Standard.

Visa blues: U.K. education hopefuls look elsewhere
Indian Express / Times of India
Students are now revisiting their plans for higher education in the U.K. after recent change in visa norms by that country, Indian Express reports. They are tapping education options in alternative destinations such as Australia, Canada and the U.S. As per the new U.K. law, foreign nationals will not be allowed to take up part-time jobs while in college or work full-time after finishing their education. Post Study Work (PSW), which earlier allowed them to work in the U.K. for two years, has been abolished. Not only that, students graduating with a U.K. degree will need to secure a job with a U.K. Border Agency-licensed tier 2 sponsor to stay on and work in the U.K. The job must pay a minimum salary of £20,000 or the minimum set out in the relevant Code of Practice.

Click here for the story from Indian Express.
Click here for additional coverage from Times of India.

Group learning helps share insights, hone skills
Business Standard
Group learning is absolutely essential for the growth of both the organisation and the individual, says organisational learning consultant Suhayl Abidi in a Business Standard report. The method allows us to share complex ideas and insights, solve problems and find innovations. It connects people across teams, domains and expertise. The teachers need not be experts or the most famous people in their fields. Sometimes a talented team of young and forward-looking researchers is enough. Adobe's learning group in Mumbai meets regularly to exchange notes and learn software capabilities that go beyond manuals and formal training. Such groups give it insights for upgrading software and manuals. Continuous learning is essential for lifetime growth. So, join or create one or more learning groups. Conduct a personal SWOT analysis at least once every six months. Identify lags in competencies and skills and take steps to address them.

Click here for the story from Business Standard.

Working from home is now trendy
Business Standard
Going to an actual office to work is passé, says freelance writer Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan in a Business Standard report. Telecommuting is the new trend now, with fewer people going to work. The many advantages of work include not having to commute. There are also fewer emails to deal with when you do not have colleagues or inter-office memos, giving you more time to work. People who work from home have a better work ethic than people with full-time jobs, she says. That is because you are always trying to prove to yourself and the outside world that you can be disciplined about this. Every day is a weekend, but on the downside, every day is also a weekday. With its obvious benefits, more and more people are choosing this lifestyle. Photographers, writers, businesspeople, designers and web developers are embracing the culture.

Click here for the story from Business Standard.

People Moves & Recruitments

Infosys Company Secretary quits
Financial Chronicle
Parvatheesam K, company secretary and compliance officer at Infosys, has resigned, Financial Chronicle reports. The board of directors has accepted the resignation effective from the end of business hours of April 13.

Click here for the story from Financial Chronicle.

RBN picks Biz Chief for Big Productions
exchange4media
Reliance Broadcast Network (RBN) has named Simmi Karna business head of its television content production arm Big Productions, exchange4media reports. Prior to this appointment, she was chief revenue officer at Balaji Telefilms.

Click here for the story from exchange4media.

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