Wipro: New hires at the Indian IT giant were shocked by pay cuts

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When Sarita, 24, recently received an email about her new job with a premier tech company in India, she was more shocked than happy.

The annual salary package she was being offered had been reduced; it was now 350,000 rupees ($7,849; £6,484), which is 50% less than it had been.

Additionally, she was urged to "grab this opportunity as it is timebound" in the email.

She claims to be aware of numerous recent hires who, like her, also received a similar email from IT powerhouse Wipro last week.

Around 4,000 new hires awaiting onboarding at Wipro, according to the IT union Nascent Information Technology Employees Senate (NITES), have been impacted by the revised offer.

The IT behemoth informed the BBC that should the new hires "refuse" to accept the revised salary, the "original offer stands.". However, it was unclear how long the candidates would have to wait to start working if they decided to accept the initial offer.

"We had to modify our onboarding plans in light of the altering macro environment and, as a result, our business needs. This offer provides candidates with an immediate opportunity to launch their careers, develop their expertise, and pick up new skills as we work to honor all outstanding offers made, according to a statement from Wipro.

Sarita claims that she submitted an application to work for the company in September 2021 as part of a hiring initiative while attending an engineering college.

She received word from Wipro last July that she had finished their Velocity training program, one of two programs the company offers to new applicants, after a number of exams, interviews, and an unpaid internship.

She claims that she had been awaiting a joining date ever since, but on February 16, she received an email offering her a new position with a different pay rate.

In an email to applicants that the BBC has seen, Wipro stated, "Like others in our industry, we continue to assess global economies and customer needs which factor into our hiring plans.".

Additionally, the email instructed candidates to complete a survey by February 20 in order to accept the revised offer; otherwise, "all prior offers will stand void.".

According to the email, onboarding for these positions "will be initiated from March 2023 onwards" and that the offer was extended to "all of Wipro's candidates under the Velocity graduates category in the FY23 batch.".

"I feel ripped off. For the tests, I worked incredibly hard to prepare. I also declined offers from other businesses because I was content with the package Wipro was giving me. I'll now have to make do with less because I have no other option, says Sarita.

According to NITES President Harpreet Singh Saluja, the union has asked the government to step in to assist the graduates.

He claims that "it is unacceptable that the burden of the company's financial difficulties is being placed solely on the shoulders of the employees," adding that "it is unjust that the decision to cut the salaries of the employees without prior consultation and negotiation is unjust and also goes against the principles of fairness and transparency.".

"I have friends who are devastated by the pay cut who are the only wage earners in their families or come from low-income families," Sarita says.

"I'm not in the same situation as you, but my parents and I are very disappointed. ".

To preserve their anonymity, some names have been changed in the story.

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