CVs of senior Wipro execs flood market

A change in regime is always an unsettling time for the troops. Wipro, which last quarter named a new CEO and drastically altered the way it does business, is seeing a huge churn among its senior staff. By one reckoning, almost a fifth of its 500 senior executives (in the 15 to 20-year experience category) have either quit or are looking for new jobs. 
According to head-hunting and recruitment agencies, dozens of vertical/domain and business heads of Wipro have started floating their resumes to explore options outside the company. 
A head-hunting firm in the city has received 52 job applications from Wipro employees in the 8-20 years of experience range in the last a month. Another recruitment firm has received 18 applications from senior Wipro execs with 8-15 years of work experience while yet another recruiter said his firm has received six exploratory calls from senior Wipro professionals in the last one week. 
Some 40 people, including verticals/business unit heads and general manager, have already quit the company in the past few weeks. That means, nearly 100 of the company's 500 senior execs have either quit or are looking at newer pastures. When contacted, a Wipro spokesperson declined to comment. 
"There is an element of uncertainty and fear. Some pressure is mounting internally and heads are asked to show the money," said a leading IT recruiter in the city who has spoken to over a dozen senior Wipro execs recently. 
The new CEO, T K Kurien, is currently conducting an internal review of the performance, roles and responsibilities of delivery heads, vertical heads and business units heads. Also Azim Premji, company chairman, has given Kurien is a "fixed mandate", which has left him with no flexibility", said a source. 
The ongoing exercise means some executives getting bigger responsibilities, while for others it means moving to new roles and changing profiles. A third category of people would be asked to change or move out. 
"So in today's context, when the company is under huge performance pressure, the thrust is not just on quality and timely delivery, but also on revenues and P&L," said an internal source. 
Previously, Wipro used to prepare P&Ls for verticals, service lines as well as geographies, while now only verticals will be responsible for P&Ls. Vertical heads will now run their businesses as CEOs of strategic business units (SBUs) with full responsibility for their own profit and loss account. The company is attempting to create a leaner organization focused on fewer strategic bets. "This was done because the previous system increased complexity in decision-making and diluted responsibility and accountability," said the source. 
"Such an organizational churn has never happened at Wipro before. Under the restructuring, goals are set so high, space is different and speed has increased. All these indicate times of change at Wipro. The company is looking at unleashing the optimum potential of every senior executive and derive additional value for clients. In the next six months, the DNA of Wipro is going to look very different," said the source. 
Wipro, whose recent numbers have failed to enthuse the street and also its chairman by the looks of it, is attempting to create a sleek organization that can keep rivals like Cognizant and HCL at bay. Analysts expect that if Wipro and Cognizant maintain their current rates of growth, the latter will overtake Wipro in a few quarters to emerge the third largest IT firm by revenue. The current overhaul is to avoid that possibility. 
Wipro has opened up a direct email communication link between Kurien and employees to facilitate interaction. Also, despite concerns of a massive exodus at the very top, Wipro is expected to report a sequential decline in attrition by 0.5-1% for the January-March quarter. 

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