He also flagged concerns surrounding the quality of IT workforce, saying much of the 3.9 million IT employees come from low-grade engineering colleges which do not follow rigorous grading patterns for students in their zeal to maintain good records.
The remarks come days after the industry lobby Nasscom said there is a need to re-train up to 1.5 million, or nearly half of its sectoral workforce. This is primarily on the back of a change in nature of work in newer, digital technologies.
Kandula said the industry, driven by yield-seeking investors, has not invested enough to upgrade the skill-sets of its employees.
He also said more number of students are now being hired from lower grade engineering colleges, which has ensured that the rise in wages has been negative by a huge margin.
Kandula said as against offers of Rs 2.25 lakh per annum that used to go out for freshers two decades ago, they have risen only to Rs 3.5 lakh now, which suggests a massive decrease in real wages from an inflation-adjusted perspective.
“For some unknown reasons, we call it a knowledge- driven industry. If you have that kind of talent, and then making them learn the existing technology itself is such a huge challenge,” he said.
The quality of the students who are coming in is so bad that many of them are not able to answer, when asked about the subjects taught to them when they were in the final semester of their engineering degrees, he said.
The critical remarks come months after a study found out that as much as 80 per cent of engineering graduates are unemployable.
Kandula had last week told PTI that his company would shift focus to hiring freshers from the laterals earlier due to the newer skill-sets which are required and the ease of training which the freshers offer. He, however, had maintained that the company will continue to hire.