What TCS “Smart Hiring” Means for Private Colleges and the Future of the Job Market

One of India’s leading information technology companies, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), which is also among the nation’s largest recruiters of graduates for IT jobs through college campus recruiting, seeks to fundamentally change the how it recruits talent every year.

So far, IT companies like TCS, Infosys, Cognizant, Accenture, among others, which tend to hire tens of thousands of new students every year, have relied heavily on select colleges for recruitment.

These companies are derisively referred to as mass businesses because of the large number of people on campus who get jobs as part of their annual campus hiring campaigns, especially at the best expensive private colleges who then advertise the jobs. numbers to potential students.

We often come across information such as “XYZ University Enters Limca Record Book for Record Placement”, such as this.

However, this method of campus placement is currently in crisis and could become obsolete in a few years. While it’s been a long time coming, the Covid-19 crisis can certainly be blamed for speeding up the timeline.

The TCS announced its “smart recruiting” program, where new graduates will be tested nationwide on November 19 in an online test followed by rounds of interviews.

The company, which has 5.28 lakh of employees on its payroll, is seeking to hire 30,000 additional people through this program. This is in addition to the 40,000 to 45,000 that the company integrated in the first half of fiscal year 2021-22, mainly through on-campus recruitment.

One of the reasons for choosing this new method could be that the demand for talent arose due to the surge in economic activity after the Covid-19-induced slowdown.

In addition, there is the problem of increasing attrition (employees leaving the company) which is common for companies like TCS. The current rate is 11.5 and may increase further.

TCS CEO Rajesh Gopinathan justified the off-campus employment by saying that “it would reduce campus visits, improve reach and, most importantly, prevent the institute from serving as a benchmark for quality.”

“We no longer depend on the institute as a substitute for quality. We can focus on individuals ”, Economic times cited telling him.

While the current smart hiring program is only for students graduating in 2020, 2021 and 2022 in BCA, B.Sc (mathematics, statistics, physics, chemistry, electronics, biochemistry, computer science, computer science) and B.Voc in CS . / IT, in the thought of the CEO, there is a good chance that the company will block campus recruiting entirely.

At the very least, off-campus hiring will be the main driver of integration.

“The traditional system consisted of a lot of campus visits. We had 700 institutes on our roster, and each year we usually hired between 300 and 400, although we monitor 700. A few years ago we experimented with recruiting based on a platform called NQT (National Qualifier Test). ). This allows us to reach over 2,000 institutes. We no longer depend on the institute as a substitute for quality. We can focus on the quality of individuals. If they can pass the test, it doesn’t matter where they come from ”, Gopinathan noted in an interview with Times of India.

“Depending on the level they pass in the NQT, their remuneration – very different from that of their fellow students – could be 100% higher. Even the person who has made it to the lower level has multiple opportunities to embark on the next career path. Twenty years ago, most first year students learned new things after coming to us. Today our own people are blown away by how quickly young people are able to respond to these hackathons etc. “, he added.

These comments are meaningful and indicate where industry leaders are heading and the way they are thinking.

What does this mean for the future of jobs?

First of all, dozens of colleges that advertise huge campus placements to attract students will be negatively affected as they lose their biggest attraction. The inflation in tuition fees that we have witnessed over the past fifteen years could be stopped.

Student strength has exploded in these campuses without even marginal improvements in the quality of education offered. Universities, especially private ones, will have to rethink their operating model in the future.

Second, the monopoly not only of the best colleges, but also of attractive fields such as IT may diminish. This is quite common for IT companies like TCS, Infosys et al to students on board (in campus recruitment drives) other courses like electrical, electronics, even mechanical and civil engineering, as the admission test only checks verbal, reasoning and digital.

Now that anyone can take these exams from anywhere in the country from less prestigious courses like BSc, BCA, even B.Voc. etc. lowers the entry bar and significantly increases competition.

This democratization of access will have an extremely positive effect on tens of thousands of students who may have missed their chance to get into good colleges but who have worked hard and are eager to learn new skills.

Third, emerging new recruiting models may make four- or three-year degree courses redundant in the future, because if companies need to test students on skills like reasoning and numerical abilities, then train them in-house for skills. and specific projects, then it makes great sense to catch them young.

Chances are, companies will start hiring people right after school based on specific skills that they can hone after a month of classes (which can be online). This will shake up the entire higher education scene in the country.

TCS may have taken the start, but others will soon be forced to follow it because, as Gopinathan said, off-campus recruiting reduces visits to hundreds of colleges (thus settling unnecessary costs) while improving the scope.

There is no need to rely on intermediaries – aka colleges – when you can contact your potential employee directly.

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