OUR FOCUS IS ON ACCELERATING OUR SHIFT TO DIGITAL AND MIGRATING OUR BUSINESS MIX TO A HIGHER VALUE
Debashis Chatterjee, President, Global Delivery, Cognizant reflects on the year went by
What is your appraisal of FY 17 from an industry and Cognizant’s perspective? As the markets we serve move away from the physical and toward the digital, our clients know they must build new customer experiences and automated processes on top of secure and scalable technology. Cognizant’s mission and investments are to precisely address this shift: to help clients transform their business, operating, and technology models in tandem to deliver the promise of digital at scale.
What are the 2 big challenges that took most of your management time during the last fiscal? It was not a challenge, but we spent considerable time chalking out a plan to accelerate Cognizant’s shift to digital services and solutions. The plan was the result of many months of careful planning between management and our board that culminated in Cognizant 2020 strategy, which we have been executing for several quarters now. As part of the plan, we have realigned our horizontal teams into three practice areas across our business segments.
These three practice areas are designed to address the needs of our clients as they transform their business, operating and technology models. Cognizant Digital Business helps clients architect and implement new digitallyenabled business models. Cognizant Digital Operations reimagines and manages our clients’ most essential business processes. And Cognizant Digital Systems & Technology simplifies, modernizes and secures client applications, platforms, and infrastructure. Considering how clients are looking to run their operations more effectively to re-deploy capital to fund their digital investments we also carefully analyzed and identified advanced automation and delivery efficiencies.
How would you place Cognizant right now given the protectionist mentality in both Europe and the US and the disruptions happenings in the tech space? As a global company headquartered in the U.S., Cognizant has always hired the best talent locally and globally. We believe that immigration processes across countries need changes and are working closely with respective administrations globally.
Like elsewhere, in the US too, we have been ramping up our recruiting and localization efforts for a number of years. We have been hiring technology and management students from dozens of U.S. campuses as well as experienced professionals from the lateral market, we have made a number of acquisitions and also rebadged employees from our customer organizations. In calendar 2016 alone, we hired about 4,000 U.S. citizens and residents. In 2017 and beyond, we expect to significantly ramp up our U.S.-based workforce by hiring graduates from campuses and experienced professionals in the open market and by making more use of university, veteran, and related programs.
We are shifting our workforce largely in response to clients’ increasing need for co-innovation and co-location. As part of this shift, we continue to expand our U.S. delivery and operations centers.
What would be the direction for Cognizant in FY 18: the key focus areas and the growth drivers and your Industry outlook? Our focus is on accelerating our shift to digital and migrating our business mix to a higher value, digitally-oriented, IP- and platform-based revenue, while continuing to invest strongly in the business for growth. We will continue to invest to scale our three digital practice areas aggressively.