The Great Indian Divide



It’s An old paradigm that crosses the gulf of time and technology.

Are IT employees from the south different from the north, east and west?
Do regional demographics have any meaning in the IT industry?

To an extent, they do. For instance, south Indian employees have a marginally
higher index of overall satisfaction than employees from any other region.
Employees from eastern India look first and foremost for job security, while
employees from other regions look more at the image of the company. In August
this year, Dataquest and IDC India conducted an HR survey to determine the
Indian IT industry’s ‘Best Employers’. Questionnaires were sent to HR
heads of 150 companies. Based on the responses, 31 companies were short-listed
for an employee survey. The final ranking of companies was then determined.
Based on the data obtained, DQ is doing a series of reports on employee
profiles. In this report, we look at similarities and differences across
regions. A word about the methodology used in data analysis. All IT employees
involved in the survey were asked to rank 16 different attributes on the basis
of five different criteria:

  • On the basis of how important these attributes are for
    employee satisfaction

  • How satisfied is that employee on each of these
    attributes

  • As reasons for leaving their last job.

  • As reasons for joining their present job.

  • Finally, as reasons for which they would consider a job
    shift today.

The results were then tabulated based on the region to which
the respondent belonged to (irrespective of where he was working at the time).

Importance and Satisfaction

Employees from south India show a marginally higher index of satisfaction
than those from the east, west and the north. They also perceive their peers to
be as satisfied as they are. However, in a comparative analysis of satisfaction
on different attributes, there are some broad areas of agreement. Employees from
the east, north and south are most satisfied with
their respective company’s images while employees from the west are more
satisfied with the work climate and cultures in their companies.

Reasons for Leaving

No surprises here. Money, job content and company image emerged as the major reasons why employees from all regions left their last jobs. Within that broad agreement, there were a few differences in priorities. A majority from the north (27%) said money was the most important reason for leaving, followed by 26% who said “company image” and another 24% said “job content”. Similarly, a majority from the west (24%) left for issues relating to compensation, followed by 17% who said “job content and company image”. 

Most employees from the south (27%), however said they had left their earlier jobs due to dissatisfaction with job content and career development. About 24% southerners said they had left because of the money, while another 16% said company image.

Job content was also voted as the most important reason for leaving by a majority of easterners (30%), followed by company image (22%) and compensation and benefits (19%).

Reasons for Job Shift

Irrespective of what their reasons for leaving their last
jobs or joining their current ones, a majority of employees from the west (38%)
and the south (21%) said they would consider shifting jobs today if offered
better money. About 17% westerners said they would leave for job content and
while another 12% voted for company image. Employees from the south also put
equal importance on job content and company image (19%). Job content also
continued to be the theme of the east with the majority of easterners (25%)
saying they would leave for better career opportunities, followed by 22% who
said money and 13% who said better company image was more important.

The most preferred employer

This is one aspect where there is the greatest agreement. A
majority of people from all regions said Infosys was their most preferred
employer. No surprise really since Infosys continues to top all HR surveys to
date. After that, however, there are regional differences. Wipro emerges as the
second choice among professionals from the west and the south and is the fourth
choice among those from the east. It does not figure at all among northerners.

Reasons for Joining

While there may be slight differences on levels of satisfaction and importance attributed to company image, a majority of people from all regions said they had joined their present company for its image. From the east, 34% said company image was their most important reason for joining, followed by 31% who said job content and career development was theirs’. From the west, 39% employees said company image was the most important reason for joining, followed by 14% who said money mattered most. From the north, 40% said image, compared to 16% who said job content. Finally, from the south, 36% said company image was more important, while 22 % said job content, followed by 17% who voted for money.

Instead, employees from the north prefer HCL and HP (their
2nd choice) followed by NIIT. The easterners prefer Cognizant and TCS after
Infosys. Those from the west prefer Infosys, Wipro and IBM, in that order. Those
from the south list Infosys, Wipro, HCL and IBM as their preferred firms.

Sarita Rani in Bangalore  

Survey by IDC India Analysis by Parijat Chakraborty, Sandeep Ranjan and Utpal Ghosh

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