Offshoring reduces graduate IT pay

by Editor 5/27/2008 3:31:00 PM

The trend of exporting entry-level IT jobs has reduced the real wages of these positions. This, in turn, demotivates people from pursuing a career in computing.

IT staffing association ATSCo (Association of Technology Staffing Companies) says that the process of offshoring graduate-level IT jobs has the effect of “removing the bottom rung from the career ladder.”

In the last five years, first-line support staff’s wages have stayed at £18,000 and second line staff's has been slow to rise, at only 0.8 percent annually in the UK.

IT managers’ wages rose by 20.5 percent in the same period. Project managers now earn £45,000. Five years ago, average pay totalled £37,500.

ATSCo chief executive Ann Swain says:

“This means that, after inflation, real pay has actually decreased, as technical support centres have moved from the UK to lower wage centres such as India. The shortage now is of candidates with a few years’ experience looking for second and third jobs. But how do you get that experience if entry level jobs are being sent offshore?” adding:

“Concerns over quality of service and data security in outsourced operations are constantly being voiced. However, these concerns haven’t yet prompted organizations to bring their IT support roles back onshore en masse.”

India and other offshore locations, on the other hand, usually lose out to the UK when it comes to higher value IT work.

SkillsMarket CEO Rick Bacon says:

“Whilst entry-level IT positions may be moving offshore, sophisticated project management jobs remain firmly rooted on UK soil. Senior level IT professionals need to remain in the UK so that they are close to their clients. These managerial positions are as much business focused as they are focused on technology… We’re seeing increasing competition for these positions and it’s crucial that people looking to secure or switch jobs in this area are recording and communicating their full range of skills to potential employers.”

Indian wages, analysts predict, will rise 14 percent in 2008. Once they are closer to those of UK IT staff, this will bring about a turning point in the UK’s offshore relationship.

“As the gap converges, it will make less and less economic sense to outsource support functions to India,” concludes Swain.

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IT salaries rise 4.1 percent

by Editor 5/23/2008 4:30:00 PM
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CV Screen, a leading UK IT recruitment agency, has conducted a comprehensive study of the IT job market and found that salaries for permanent IT jobs have risen by 4.1 percent over the last 12 months. The average advertised salary for an IT professional is now ₤34,217.

For the purpose of the study, the recruitment agency monitored more than 11,000 IT jobs advertised in the UK in the first quarter of 2008.

CV Screen’s managing director Matthew Iveson said:

“The IT jobs market is holding up well in spite of the wider economic problems. It is likely that as a result of the rising costs of living in the UK that more candidates will seek to move for financial reasons, thus putting further upward pressure on IT salaries.”

He added that there was still a “considerable war for talent” for IT professionals with technical skills in areas such as .Net, C# and PHP and that the “continued high demand for IT professionals has continued to put upward pressure on IT salaries.”

You can get a free copy of the IT Salary Survey on the CV Screen site.

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Capgemini to launch improved data conversion solutions

by Editor 5/23/2008 4:20:00 PM

Capgemini, one of the world's leading technology, consulting and outsourcing services providers, has announced an asset purchase agreement with Advantage Consulting Group, a professional services company founded in 1995 that specializes in software installations, software data conversions and enhancements and provides services mainly in the healthy and insurance sector.

 

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The deal makes it possible for Capgemini to now offer a wider, improved range of cost-effective, low-risk conversion solutions to businesses in the finance sector. The enhanced data conversion solutions will help clients consolidate and implement new information technology systems.

 

“The deal with Advantage demonstrates Capgemini’s continues commitment to its financial services business. The addition of Advantage’s tools, senior staff and depth of experience will give us a clear differentiator in the sector that not only enhances our ability to service existing insurance clients, but also enables us to expand into other industries, including banking, capital markets and cards,” says Raymond Spencer, chief executive of Capgemini’s Financial Services Strategic Business Unit.

John Barr, vice-president of Capgemini’s Life, Health and Annuity Portfolio, adds: “With a toolset specifically designed for insurance data conversion, Advantage has become a leader in consolidating and migrating insurance policy data from legacy to new systems. This niche service will be delivered, building on the 25 member team joining us along with this transaction, through Capgemini’s Rightshore® capabilities — a global network of onsite, onshore, nearshore and offshore resources —  giving our clients the tools and services needed to effectively convert data.”

Advantage Consulting Group President and CEO Richard Knutson says: “Consolidating and implementing new IT systems can be one of the most expensive and risky projects for any type of business. Our conversion method, customized for each project, verifies that the correct data is properly loaded into new systems, enabling our clients to focus on their core business, without worrying about data loss.” 

 

To browse the latest job openings at Capgemini, please visit our job board.

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Detica: UK government sites are a waste of money

by Editor 5/23/2008 4:04:00 PM

Government websites are a chronic waste of taxpayers’ money, warns UK-based technology consultancy Detica, explaining that the UK government’s failure to listen to the public and provide online services the public needs as well as failure to carefully plan its web presence are resulting in government departments losing grip over the websites and the sites themselves becoming a big waste of taxpayers' money.

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Detica’s warning came in response to a report issued by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), which was critical of the websites’ quality and accessibility and revealed that the government is unfamiliar with the exact number of websites it has, with their running costs and possible cost saving strategies.

Andrew Rolf, head of creative services in Detica’s government business unit, says: “Government departments have rushed into gaining a presence on the web without considering the purpose of their sites,” adding that the situation “is not helped by the fact that 12-month funding cycles do nothing to support strategic development programmes or promote consistency between different sites.”

“It is hardly surprising that the resulting sites neither meet the needs of the public nor improve the operational efficiency of the departments in question… Some really basic customer service tricks are being missed. For example, website owners could ask the IT helpdesk what the most frequent requests are and place answers to those questions on the home page.”

Besides adding an FAQ page, Detica also advises the government departments behind the websites to pinpoint the target audience assign a clear purpose to them as well as clear ownership to make sure that someone is accountable and in charge of maintaining them.

“Lack of governance is the biggest single risk to government websites. Without this, any website project will quickly find all the same problems being made six months after launch,” says Rolf.  

 

 

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Infosys catches up with TCS in 100,000-employee club

by Editor 5/22/2008 3:59:00 PM

Indian software maker Infosys is weeks away from crossing the 100,000-employee mark and joining Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) in the prestigious club.

Infosys currently employs 82,000 people and has made job offers in more than a thousand engineering colleges in India.

“We have given 18,000 offers. This shows our confidence in the business. We will soon employ in excess of one lakh people in India,” says T.V. Mohandas Pai, Director of Human Resources and former CFO at Infosys.

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The company expects the conversion rate (number of candidates employed) to be between 70 and 80 percent.

Infosys has announced plans to hire a total of 25,000 employees this year in IT, business process outsourcing and consulting services. For comparison, Tata Consultancy Services has plans to hire between 30 and 35 thousand new employees, including 20,000 fresh hires from 200-250 colleges.

IT analyst Apurva Shah says: “Headcount addition is in line with their guidance and shows the business confidence despite question marks over the U.S. economy.”

The company is aggressively hiring, but also taking steps to fight off attrition. “We are tightening our assessment of top performers. We would also introduce variable pays for middle and senior-level management,” says Pai.

 

The company has a new performance-based pay structure that can make a difference between average and top employees’ salaries to vary up to 40 percent. “Our attrition is 13.4 percent and we want to get it in single digits,” comments Infosys’ head of human resources, Nandita Gurjar.

 

Companies in the IT and business management sector employ a total of about two million people in India. Local technology giants Tata Consultancy and Infosys have most of their staff based in India.

Global industry leaders IBM and Accenture employ 368,000 and 172,000 people worldwide respectively and, because of the lower costs in India, they are currently waging a war for talent in the country, for employees and staff in middle management.

This is not to say that Infosys does not recruit new employees abroad. This year, the company has hired more than 20 people from UK campuses and 145 from US campuses. 

 

 

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BAH launches Booz & Company as leading global consultancy

by Editor 5/22/2008 3:42:00 PM

Today the global commercial officers of Booz Allen Hamilton Inc. launched Booz & Company, a premier global management consulting firm for businesses, government ministries and other organizations.

London-based Shumeet Banerji, formerly President of the firm’s global commercial business, has been elected Chief Executive Officer of Booz & Company, and Joe Saddi, based in the Middle East, will serve as Chairman of the new organization’s 16 member Board of Directors.

Today’s launch follows the recent announcement of a strategic investment by The Carlyle Group to buy out the global commercial officers’ majority interest in Booz Allen’s U.S. government business. This will result in the legal separation of the U.S. government and the global commercial firms.

Booz & Company is currently a subsidiary of Booz Allen Hamilton and will become a legally independent firm upon completion of the strategic realignment. The transaction is expected to close in mid-late 2008, subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

Booz & Company starts with sustained double-digit growth, a superb client list and an enviable, debt free, balance sheet. It will be solely owned by its officers and will have more than 3,300 professionals in 57 offices around the world. The worldwide reach of its business is shown by its truly global management team and the fact that the majority of its 200 officers are based outside the US.

"The launch of Booz & Company is a significant milestone for our firm,” said Mr. Banerji, who has 15 years experience at the firm serving clients in both the private and public sectors. “Our purpose is to serve the senior agenda of the world’s leading institutions, public and private. We will be recognized for the relevance of our ideas, the practical impact of our contributions, the collaborative spirit of our people, and the intrinsically global nature of our firm. Our singular goal is to assist our clients in creating and delivering essential advantage around the globe.”

"This is an exciting time to be part of one of the leading management consulting firms in the world,” said Mr. Saddi, who has over 20 years of strategic consulting experience. “We have a clear ambition for the firm and are focused on delivering real impact for our clients.”

The launch of Booz & Company reinvigorates the firm’s strategic focus while drawing on its storied history of leadership and innovation in management consulting, that began in 1914 when its founder Edwin Booz started the management consulting profession.

Since that time it has introduced some of the most significant and celebrated advances in business management including: the product life cycle model, supply chain management concept, organizational DNA and market driving capabilities.

This leadership in ideas continues with Booz & Company’s signature research, such as its annual CEO Succession Study and annual Global Innovation 1000 study.

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More UK IT jobs to be offshored or made redundant

by Editor 5/21/2008 3:11:00 PM

Several companies have announced major job cuts and plans to offshore IT jobs to India over the last couple of days.

Barclays' tech staff in Poole fear that their division will close by the end of the year, which would result in a loss of a few hundred jobs, following the announcement the bank made earlier this year, revealing plans to offshore some of its UK IT roles.

A Barclays' representative said: “As each part of the business grows, there will be changes and within those changes there may be an impact on the IT function and there may be some element of offshoring to meet the needs of business," adding:  

“Our business in Africa is growing, therefore we have service hubs that we need to develop to meet the (region’s) growing needs… (which) may require the offshoring of some jobs from the UK to Africa.”

Publishing firm Thomson Reuters will cut 250 out of 650 jobs in its IT, content and operations division in the wake of the results of the consolidation review processes, which showed that many of the jobs in question overlapped.

Staff reviews were part of the consolidation plan since the merger. When the two media groups joined forces, they announced plans to save £383 million by the third year through “synergies in areas such as property and technology.”

The consolidated company does not yet know how many UK jobs across the specific divisions, including technology, will be gone, but expects to have the exact numbers within the next two weeks.

Royal Mail recently made almost a half of its permanent IT jobs redundant following a similar staff review.

Lloyds TSB will outsource about 450 IT jobs - 200 contractor posts and up to 250 permanent positions - to a technical facility in India.

The bank's decision will reportedly affect IT staff in London, Edinburgh, Manchester and other big cities and leave only a fifth of the IT staff in the affected areas in the UK. The offshoring process begins in August. The bank reportedly plans to offshore a total of 655 IT jobs to India over the following nine months.

The workers' union Unite called the decision “unjustified,” saying that it “represents a lack of faith in the IT skills of their UK workforce.”

The bank said that the employees who find themselves redundant would be offered replacement roles. In response, Steve Tatlow, assistant general secretary to Lloyds TSB Union (LTU), commented:

“There is no guarantee that these replacement roles will be on the same pay scale, (in the same) location or even that the job will be in IT; they could be completely unsuitable. A lot of people will be choosing redundancy. We are fundamentally opposed to offshoring.”

Cognizant, Tata Consultancy Services and Wipro will take over the positions.

 

To browse or apply for the latest opportunities in consulting, please visit our job board.

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Demand for IT contractors plummets

by Editor 5/21/2008 2:56:00 PM

The latest industry index shows that the demand for financial IT contractors from the private sector was at a seven-year low last month.

The number of finance positions advertised for contractors was down 16.1 percent according to a recent Computer Weekly survey, which is the biggest drop since 2001.

IT contractors in financial services have witnessed fewer contract extensions, lower daily rates, fewer offers and generally less demand for their services.

David Smith, vice-chairman of the IT and Comms group at REC, says:

“Banks and financial services outfits cutting IT contractor hires should be no surprise to anybody because the sector is in trouble. They are trying to re-adjust to the new economic circumstances.”

PCG policy officer John Kell has commented on IT contractors’ fears of being stuck on the bench indefinitely:

“We are seeing a lot of reports on our forums of interviews being harder to come by, and contractors being more inclined to stick with their current client and aim for a renewal, rather than chase a higher rate elsewhere… It’s certainly the case in financial services, the picture for other contractors is not so clear.”

“Companies are re-evaluating their 2008 IT budgets and cost is becoming a much more fiercely interrogated factor of business cases than it was during the ‘good times,’” says PM3 Consulting recruiter Steve Pragnell, adding that their “new business is slightly down on last year, across the board, though, not just in the finance and technology industries.”

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He says that the economic crunch affects contractors in two ways: clients use it to justify reducing rates while workers see it as reason enough to to negotiate. Another factor that will drive the contractors’ pay rates lower is the competition for project management contracts.

“We recently had over 200 applications for a £300 per day PMO role. This is really at the bottom of the range we hire, yet we got a good number of experienced project managers pitching for the work,” Pragnell says. “As the numbers of contractors looking for work grow, inevitably individuals will start to cut their rate expectations so that their CV gets to the top of the pile sooner.”

For the latest opportunities for contractors, please visit Top-ContractConsultant.com.

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Career events for consultants in June

by Editor 5/20/2008 4:08:00 PM

The management consulting careers site Top-Consultant.com has a number of career events scheduled for the coming months.

If you are interested in attending open evenings with IBM or the Place Group, please make sure you fill out the registration forms on the Events page by the end of the month.

Open evenings provide job seekers with an excellent opportunity to check out a company and its employees before applying for a job there and they often help consultants decide on the next step in their career.

IBM hosts a Recruitment Open Evening for SAP Professionals on June 12th. The company is eager to meet seasoned SAP professionals who are interested in joining their Global Business Services Team.

The Place Group Open Evenings will be hosted in Birmingham, Manchester and London in May and June. The consultancy is currently recruiting Consultants, Project Managers and Client Directors across England to join their team of professionals who aim to deliver 21st century education to British schools and pave the way in the transformation of Children's Services.

To find out about other career events and how they may benefit your career, please visit Top-Consultant.

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Europe’s top computer consultancy optimistic about growth in 2008

by Editor 5/20/2008 2:36:00 PM
capgemini jobs,technology jobs,consulting jobs,IT consulting jobs

Capgemini CEO Paul Hermelin said today that the IT consulting company was optimistic about revenue growth prospects in 2008 after having witnessed only limited indicators of industry slowdown in certain sectors in Europe.

The company's business operations in the U.S., however, are “extremely vibrant” according to Hermelin. He added that the consultancy would “deliver the first half on budget” and said he was optimistic about the second half as well:

“We think the second half will be positive. We no longer run a risk of a flat or slightly negative second half.”

Capgemini, the leading computer consulting firm in Europe, chalked 8. billion euros in sales in 2007. The company's experts have predicted a 2-5 percent sales growth in 2008.

To browse the latest job openings at Capgemini, please visit out IT consulting job board

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