• 10 September 2002
  • News
  • By Dataquest

RANK 3: Wipro The Big Leap

Pratik Kumar
Corporate V-P,
Human Resources

Shrikant Lonikar
Group GM, HR

Joydeep Bose
GM, Corporate HR

Bijay Sahoo
VP, TED
Wipro Technologies

Anil Jacob
Head, HR
Wipro Healthcare & 
Life Science

MV Subramanian
GM, Strategic Resourcing, Wipro Tech

N Balachander
V-P, HR, Wipro
GE Medical Systems

Bala
subramanya

HR Manager,
Wipro Fluid Power

Joseph John 
Head, Strategic Resourcing, Wipro Infotech

Wipro will probably celebrate. After a fairly dismal performance last year for a company in its league, it made a big jump up the rankings—from number 8 to number 3. And there’s one reason—it improved internal HR processes and indicators. This is the only company among the Top 5 where the HR Score (that comes from company indicators) is higher than the Employee Score (which comes from employee responses).

Effects of Recession

Reduction in perks: 100%
Increase in work load: 85.7%
Reduction in tour entitlement: 85.7%
Strengths

Good performance on attrition and retention
Training focus remains high
Peer satisfaction looks up
Weaknesses
Comparatively low perks and benefits
Fewer Wiproites name it their dream company
Overall satisfaction low for a Top 5 company
Staff most satisfied with...
Company image and technology
Training and development
Staff least satisfied with...
Interpersonal relationships, compensation
Performance appraisal system

Some of this was driven by damage control after 280 people were laid off under the company’s "Bottom 5%" policy, which led to a significant fall in morale. Now, Wipro says the severance policy is only selectively practiced, non-performers are given two years to pull up their socks, and outplacement is attempted as a last recourse. Also, the company has some fairly intricate HR processes that includes a 360-degree survey for identifying what the company calls "Wipro Leaders"; a talent review and planning process that identifies top 10% of the talent, and the "talent at risk".

This year’s figures for the company, however, are a mixture of good news and bad. The good news—it came second only to Infosys in the ‘Preferred Company’ rankings, with 6.8% of all respondents voting for it as their dream company. The bad news—that’s down from 12.5% last year. The good news—50% of its own employees voted for it as their dream company. The bad news—that’s down from 79% last year. Among those Wiproites who didn’t vote for their own company, 21.4% preferred Microsoft and 17.9% said Sun Microsystems.

However, attrition and retention improved, average tenure was slightly above the industry average at 3.4 years and training ratings went up (ranked 4th). Overall satisfaction levels were still not too high (rank 7th), though employee perception of peer satisfaction was higher (ranked 4th). Relationship management—both within and without—has traditionally been Wipro’s strength. That took a beating last year, looked up somewhat this year, but numbers show that there may still be some way to go.

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