Wednesday, November 14, 2007

IT, BPO firms seek employee referrals

Reeling under high attrition in a labour-intensive industry, IT and BPO companies are now setting their eyes on job referrals by their employees with a twin-aim to retaining the existing workforce and expanding it as well.

Employees have emerged as the key asset for companies engaged in the information technology and related services.

But, frequent job-hopping and a high attrition rate have become a key deterrent for this growth story, even as the entire talent pool is getting smaller compared to the high growth rates coming their way.

With an aim to tackle this crisis, the companies are now encouraging their employees with cash incentives and other rewards to refer friends and acquaintances for jobs with their organisations.

According to the industry experts, 30-60 per cent hiring is already being done through this channel, which originally started in the US and other Western countries and is now catching up fast in India.

"We are hiring more than 32 per cent of employees through referrals," Nasdaq-listed Indian BPO service provider EXL Services' vice-president and global head of human resources Deepak Dhawan told PTI.

"The process saves a lot of time and cost that the company would otherwise need to spend while recruiting through conventional channels," Dhawan said.

"Hiring through employee referrals is on an upswing, with about 50 per cent new employees being sourced through this method," Xansa India's senior vice-president (human resources) Vikram Karayi said.

Xansa is a UK-based outsourcing and technology firm with over 8,000 employees in the UK and India. PTI