Sweet said the company is navigating a challenging environment including the compounding effects of wage inflation on its costs. She said the company is addressing these challenges through a combination of pricing improvements, cost efficiencies and operational rigour.
Accenture has called out three action points to reduce costs – leaders, corporate function, and office space. It was reported on Friday that Accenture will lay off 19,000 employees globally over the next 18 months as clients have become cautious about IT spends.
“We will use data and transparent views on metrics to ensure we have our leaders where we need them most. Our data shows that we can operate with fewer Accenture leaders (our managing directors) in some parts of the business and still drive our growth. These departures will be mostly completed by the end of the fiscal year 2023 (ending August),” she said in an email to employees that TOI has seen.
Accenture’s leadership consists of members of its global management committee (primary management and leadership team), senior managing directors and managing directors. Accenture doesn’t share a break-up of how many MDs or SMDs it has. However, in December last year, it promoted 1,214 as MDs and 119 as SMDs.
Sweet also said that in some of its market units, it’s taking steps to better balance its supply of skills below managing director to meet client demands and focus on high growth areas.
Sweet said that it will transform its corporate functions through the expanded use of the SynOps platform, and other data, AI and technology, the use of more cost-effective locations, and new ways of working. Accenture has invested more than $300 million over 3 years to develop SynOps, a platform to accelerate the journey to digital, data-driven operations and deliver business outcomes.
The software major is also scaling back its real estate footprint. Sweet said they will reduce approximately 25% of office space “to reflect our knowledge of when, where and how our people use workspace in an omni-connected working environment.”
Accenture India has 3.5 lakh employees, and about 5,000-6,000 employees are expected to be affected by the layoffs. Sources in the company said many employees on the bench are sending emails to colleagues asking for opportunities in any of the projects. “Colleagues on the bench are apologetic that they’re spamming our inboxes,” one employee said. Employees onsite are worried about clients turning cautious about new projects. Accenture India has openings for over 6,000 employees on its website.
When TOI contacted Accenture on the layoffs, the company said this may differ by market and by country, “as a consequence of our different footprint and growth, and should not be taken as a figure applicable to all geographies.”
The company said India has a large number and variety of opportunities, and it is actively recruiting for new roles.