With the Work From Home model having worked well during the lockdown, many companies are keen to persist with it even when things are back to normal. India's largest bank, State Bank of India has put in place a work-from-anywhere policy, and India's largest IT services firm TCS has said that by 2025, only one in four of its employees will be working from office. Plenty of other companies too have voiced similar plans.
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But not so Infosys. While it will ensure that its employees have flexibility, the software services major is keener on a policy of working from office once the pandemic dies down.
According to Infosys CEO Salil Parekh, there is a reason why work progressed smoothly despite majority of employees working out of their homes.
"We have a constant that we look at called social capital," Parekh said in an interview to CNBC-TV18.
"Because this is something we built up over the years within the company working with different teams and individuals, different groups working together, it was somewhat simpler for us to quickly go to work from home," he said.
Parekh does not see work from home as a model that is conducive to team building, and one that his company is keen to sustain.
"Of course, as long as the medical crisis is there we will absolutely be able to sustain it. What will emerge is something which is a flexible model going forward but the social capital at some stage, that we are now using, will have to regenerate and for that, we will need the office environment in whatever shape or form that is," he said.
Parekh said he had not set a clear target date for employees returning to office.
"We don't see a clear view on what that's going to be; what we will be very clear about it is going to be flexibility on how people work," he said.
When asked what this meant for margins, he reiterated that the company will uphold the margin guidance and keep investments within that range. Cost savings has been the prime motivation for most companies planning to get a large percentage of their staff to work out of home.
"We haven't done a detailed computation on what that will mean for margins," Parekh said.
"We don't have a set model on what percentage will work from where. We think of course whatever efficiency we can drive we will drive into it and we are comfortable for this year with this 20-23 percent margin guidance," he said
On areas where Infosys will continue to invest, Parekh said investments would be done such that they did not affect the targeted range of margin.
"We have spend almost 6-9 months making significant investments, especially in our digital capabilities ad yeh reskilling of our employees. That investment was a one-off to step change the investment and get us back on track.
Now we continue to do investments but the approach has to be for us today to be done within our operating structure. We have strict focus of making sure we stick with our margin guidance and then be very efficient overall that we find investment opportunities that we put into the business," he said.
On acquisitions, Parekh said that they were open to looking at acquisitions across cloud, cybersecurity and Internet of Things.
First Published: IST