Infosys office in Bangalore. Infosys is the largest software company in the country and the head office is in Bangalore, Karnataka, India. Arindam Mukherjee

During Bengaluru chapter of Global Shapers, a body backed by the World Economic Forum, Infosys’s HR Head Krishnamurthy Shankar admitted that over 9000 employees were ‘released’ by them in 2016.

He has cleared that these employees were not fired, but moved and transferred to other departments, as lower-end jobs are vanishing and there exists no more jobs for them. Infact, around 2000 employees are being ‘released’ every quarter at Infosys. He said these employees are now working on more advanced projects.

“We have been releasing about 2,000 people every quarter and also training them in special courses that will help them in their new assignments,” Shankar said at this event.

Automation or automatic control, is the use of various control systems for operating equipment such as machinery, processes in factories, boilers and heat treating ovens, switching on telephone networks, steering and stabilization of ships, aircraft and other applications and vehicles with minimal or reduced human intervention.

As per Shankar, 490 employees were trained in machine learning and Artificial Intelligence in the first batch, as more such re-skilling courses are being designed. But he didn’t reveal as to how many of these 9000 ‘released’ employees were reassigned with assignments or how many of them were actually fired.

Another major fact shared by HR Head was that recruitment is substantially down at Infosys, as automation is taking some real time toll on job opportunities. During the first 9 months of this fiscal, Infosys hired only 5700 employees, compared to 17,000 in the last year. As a result, in the December quarter, the total strength of Infosys actually declined, which is a ‘rare occurrence’ for the company.

A World Bank research in Oct, 2016 predicted that automation threatens 69 per cent of the jobs in India, while 77 per cent in China. It also said that technology could fundamentally disrupt the pattern of traditional economic path in developing countries.
Most big IT services companies are investing heavily in automation which may lead to this picture until we reach year 2025.