Unperturbed by the recent employee agitation at Chennai plant, Ford motor has planned to increase its workforce by 700 by the end of this year in its two units: Ford India and Ford Global Business Services. Recently the company had recruited around 90 B-school graduates and 45 engineering graduates. Of these engineering graduates, a good number has been allocated to the manufacturing department at Sanand plant. The rest have been taken for functions like IT, HR, Finance etc. In the future, the American automaker has plans of increasing the existing work force by 50%.
The company’s attrition rate is a meager 6% which is less than 50% of the market rate. Moreover, the company considers its employer brand to be very strong in Chennai and thus wants to leverage the opportunities there to create a talent pool for Sanand Plant. The company has already invested Rs. 4000 crore at the Sanand manufacturing plant where it intends to produce the new Fiesta and other models, and the first vehicles and engines are scheduled to roll out of the plant by 2014.
The main reason for increasing the manpower is because of the expectations Ford has from the EcoSport. We had reported earlier that the EcoSport is a success even before it is launched and the amount of interest it has generated is testimony to that. It won’t be hard to say that the EcoSport is one of the most anticipated vehicles, which will hit the Indian markets in the next 8 months. Ford will offer the EcoSport in both diesel and petrol version, although the company is yet to confirm the diesel engine which will power the compact SUV.