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May 11, 2002 | 1215 IST
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All you wanted to know about Infosys

K Giriprakash

Infosys Technologies' annual report has everything you always wanted to know about India's best-run company and, perhaps, how to run it too.

The tome can well be a benchmark of transparency in annual reports. Here's an example: What percentage of applicants receive offers from Infosys? A mere 0.88 per cent, or 1,710 of the 1,93,640 who applied, made it to the software pioneer's portals during 2001-02.

During 2000-01, it was still tougher getting in, with around 0.45 per cent of the applicants making it. The company received 3,85,200 applications, of whom 20,800 were interviewed and l,765 were offered jobs.

Infosys employees' average age grew marginally to 26.6 during 2001-02 from 25.7 during 2000-01. Those in the age-group 20-25 fell from 61 per cent to about 50 per cent of the staff. The middle-aged constitute 12 per cent, slightly higher than 9 per cent during 2000-01.

Infosys has an education index of its staff. The index was 31,385 during 2001-02 compared to 28,725 during 2000-01. The education index gives a year-end measure, with primary education calculated as 1, secondary education as 2 and tertiary education as 3.

The value-added per software engineer during 2001-02 was around Rs 2.4 million, compared to Rs 2.2 million during 2000-01.

The company's liquid assets grew by Rs 4.49 billion to Rs 10.27 billion. This was mainly because of internal cash accruals. In its annual report, Infosys admitted its profits could be affected as had happened in 1995, when its largest client wanted a price reduction. But Infosys chose to reduce its services to that client rather agree to a price cut.

Then there is the lowdown about the company's global sales chief Phaneesh Murthy and four others getting higher salaries (between Rs 10-20 million) than even the founders of the company.

"Elementary, my dear Watson, they are based in the US," chairman N R Narayana Murthy explained to a puzzled shareholder at the last annual general meeting.

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