Cognizant delays promotions, salary hikes to October

Amid talks of layoffs and tightening US visa programs, US headquartered Cognizant Technology Solutions (CTS) is gearing up for delayed hikes in salaries and promotions.

While hikes and promotions are typically communicated to employees in June every year, this year, the company has delayed the process this year.

In an email (seen by TOI) sent to employees from Jim Lennox, CTS’s chief people officer, said revisions and promotions will be effective from October 1.

While associates up to level of manager will receive a percentage increase to their base pay as in previous years, senior managers and above will now receive a lumpsum payout vis a vis an increased salary every month, apart from their performance linked bonuses.

The email says promotions for associates up to level of VP will be announced soon and will be effective October first. Details on promotions for senior VP and higher will be shared separately. Lennox goes on to say that 2017 has seen a good start and while macro environment factors cannot be controlled, what can be controlled are their executions against macro shifts, driving value to clients and differentiating themselves in the marketplace.

While details on promotions are shared with employees by June every year, the email has come as a surprise to employees who were prepared for no promotions this year. This communication also comes amidst allegations made by employees that some of them are forced to resign. This forced CTS President Rajeev Mehta, to email employees last month that the company has not laid off employees.

For the first time in its history , CTS rolled out a voluntary separation scheme for D+ executives in a bid to help associates who are seeking to make a change in their careers. Last month, the company told its employees that it will no longer file green card applications under the EB2 and EB3 route. In a recent earnings calls, CTS said it was reducing dependence on H-1B visas and have applied for less than half the number of visas it sought last year. The IT firm is expanding hiring in its US delivery centres. The company had 261,200 employees as on March with a majority of its workforce based in India.

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