Cognizant CMD Ramkumar Ramamoorthy quits

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on July 09, 2020

Ramkumar Ramamoorthy, CMD, Cognizant India

In a sudden development, two veterans at the $17-billion Cognizant Technology Solutions — Ramkumar Ramamoorthy, CMD, Cognizant India, and Pradeep Shilige, Global Delivery Head — have resigned. This follows a series of resignations since Brian Humphries, former CEO of Vodafone Business, took charge as Cognizant’s CEO in April 2019.

Andy Stafford, a two-decade veteran at Accenture, will replace Shilige, who will continue till September. However, for Ramamoorthy, who will be in office only till July 17, the search is on for a replacement, said a Cognizant spokesperson.

In a social media message, Ramamoorthy said, “In the past few months, I felt a strong desire to double down on my abiding passion (also my first calling!) — education, skilling and mentoring entrepreneurs. I am all set to explore that world again from July 17.” Sources in Cognizant said since Humphries joined, there have been a series of high-profile resignations, including Sumithra Gomatam (head of digital operations); and senior vice-presidents in the finance, enterprise application services and delivery transformation verticals. Humphries wants a completely new team and the old timers are having a tough time, said a senior official at Cognizant, which has over 75 per cent of its 2.91 lakh employees working in India.

In May, Cognizant offered a voluntary separation package to nearly 400 mid-senior managers. While announcing the 2019 third quarter results, the company said that to improve cost structure to partially fund these investments and advance Cognizant’s growth agenda, it plans to remove 10,000-12,000 mid-to-senior level associates globally from their current roles in coming quarters. The gross reduction is expected to lead to a net reduction of approximately 5,000 to 7,000 roles (about 2 per cent of the company’s total population), as the company aims to reskill and redeploy approximately 5,000 of the total associates impacted, Cognizant then said.

In a message to employees today, Humphries said Stafford spent nearly two decades with Accenture where he rose to Senior Managing Director responsible for the firm's Global Delivery Network for Technology. “I have asked Andy to take a fresh look at our Delivery organisation and refine our operating model to achieve world-class effectiveness,” he said.

The operating model will need to support progress on several fronts, both fuelling investments in growth and quality while ensuring competitiveness through better pyramid management, greater use of lean processes and automation, and a simplified Delivery organisation. “We must do this whilst acknowledging the particular delivery needs of Digital Business, Digital Operations, and Digital Systems and Technology,” he said. “We are grateful for Ramkumar’s leadership role during the pandemic, where he ensured associate health and safety and effectuated the transition to work from home.”

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Published on July 09, 2020
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