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Cognizant lays off 200 senior executives

Cognizant Technology Solutions (CTS) has let go of about 200 senior employees at the director level and above this year, with a severance payout of three-four months. It’s part of the company’s plan to align its talent pool to the newer digital requirements — lay off those who have not adjusted to the current technology environment and bring in those with new skills. 

The entire exercise was completed in August and the company expects to incur $35 million in severance payouts. Last year, it offered a voluntary separation scheme to 400 senior employees. The programme this year was not voluntary. 

“As part of our ongoing workforce management strategy, we ensure we have the right employee skill sets necessary to meet client needs and achieve our business goals. This process has resulted in changes, including some employees transitioning out of the company. We continue to enhance our capabilities and hire for roles across all our practice areas in the company. Details of severance or any other conditions of employment are confidential,” the company said, when asked for a comment. 

Some of the affected employees who spoke with TOI said they had been asked to sign a mutual release agreement with the company where they acknowledge that they won’t press legal action against the company or its directors or its officers. 

The contract also states that the employee has entered into the agreement voluntarily. The layoffs have left employees worried about how the tectonic technology shifts are accelerating skill redundancies.

However, overall, the company’s employee strength is growing, with newer areas in particular seeing a sharp increase. “By year-end, we expect our global cloud workforce to exceed 20,000 associates. Today, about half of our current cloud-focused associates work in our digital systems & technology practice, which brings together applications, infrastructure and security to help clients rapidly deliver new applications and services, support product development at scale, and shrink time to value from years to months,” said Cognizant CEO Francisco D’Souza in the June quarter earnings call. 

The move is part of the co’s plan to align its talent pool to the newer requirements — lay off those who have not adjusted to the current tech and bring in those with new skills.


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