Just days after President Obama's State of the Union rant about outsourcing, India's HCL Technologies has announced plans to create 10,000 jobs in the United States and Europe over the next five years. Actually, it's just reiterating numbers announced last fall.
It plans to increase the investments it has made recently by setting up engineering hubs in Seattle; Raleigh, N.C.; Rochester, N.Y.; and Wilsonville, Ore., according to IndustryWeek. According to that article:
[It plans to set up Global Centers of Excellence in key U.S. and European markets] that will offer recruitment and training programs for college graduates as well as provide platforms for developing an IT skill pool in local communities through collaboration with anchor customers and universities. HCL will be working with 12 universities to offer a six-month elective course-as well as workshops on technology and management-and encouraging innovation through contests ...
The company set up shop in the Northwest near Microsoft and Boeing last fall, investing $4 million and pledging to hire 400 people in the next two years. At that time, its stated goal was to hire 1,000 in the United States over 18 months.
The Times of India, in an article saying the Indian outsourcers are creating jobs, not stealing them, quotes Wipro Chairman Azim Premji as saying the United States has become "over-sensitive on jobs." It also quotes Mahindra Chairman Satyam Vineet Nayyar saying of Western economies, where they get bulk of business:
Indian firms when they go overseas, will have to create jobs there.
My colleague Ann All wrote about the Indian outsourcers U.S. hiring plans back in 2010, repeating the idea that many of those hired are not U.S. citizens. When it set up the Seattle hub, HCL said 80 percent of the hiring would be done locally, with 20 percent of the workers coming from HCL's other centers. A Wall Street Journal story at the time said that 40 percent of the company's 6,400 employees in the United States are Americans.
HCL has been sensitive to so-called "socially responsible" companies that want to keep work in the United States and has gained positive PR for its "Employees First, Customers Second" philosophy.
As our Mike Vizard wrote in November:
Long term, the real question shouldn't be so much about rolling back globalization as much as it should be about advancing the skills of the entire IT community in a way that promotes enough work for all concerned.