AS COVID-19 RAGED, lockdown-induced companies struggled to survive and sustain operations. This hit the job market hard in 2020. The impact was sudden, and dramatic. Worse was feared in the coming months.
A year later, however, there’s a silver lining. Of the 408 companies for which employee numbers are available in the Fortune 500 listing, far from falling, the employee base rose marginally to 60.7 lakh in FY21, from 59 lakh in FY20. The top 10, accounting for 31.5% of the base, increased their headcount by 8.87% in FY21. Led by IT majors Tata Consultancy Services, Infosys, Wipro and HCL Technologies, their employee count rose to 19.12 lakh, compared with 17.6 lakh in FY20.
India’s four leading IT companies together employ over 11.2 lakh people, with TCS leading the pack [4.89 lakh]. With the changing mode of work due to the lockdown, manpower demands of IT solution companies soared and they went on a hiring spree, spearheading the turnaround. The top five added more than 122,000 people during the first half of FY22, against 138,000 in the whole of FY21.
Besides, the IT firms, India’s biggest conglomerate Reliance Industries (RIL) figured among the top 10, increasing its employee base by 20.8% last year. During the pandemic year, RIL shifted its focus to Reliance Jio and Reliance Retail, attracting investments from international investors, including Google and Facebook. Both TCS and RIL added more than 40,000 employees each last year.
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