India office has grown over past 8 to 9 years like any back office ops firm for typical pharma projects. Hardly any innovation and still relying heavily on excel based tools. Some topping on the cake is Microstrategy based dashboards and some use of SAS etc. Some say, the best place to look for typical time bound promotion is ZS Associates in India.
Core to ZS culture was the live element called PD Manager (Professional Development Manager). People were molded into the ZS way through the PD Manager, (who at most managed 3 to 6 PD reports and everyone in the organisation had a PD Manager. Even Prabhakant Sinha, the S of ZS , Zoltners was his PD Manager)who was your super coach, super career guide and conscience keeper, a true confidant, a mentor and a friend in tough times. Now ZS has diluted this role in India by hiring PD Managers for managing herd of 200 associates.
Some comment that ZS (India and elsewhere) believes in providing lifetime opportunity for those who cannot find a job outside ZS.
I believe even if ZS went in India typical ops delivery route, it still could have maintained its sacrosanct values through PD Management, of top league consulting firm!
I remember my talks with Partner Julie Billingsley , who heads Human Resources function at ZS. I asked about some HR and benefits staff in the US office, who were there for a decade or more, holding same old associate or Associate Consultant titles; "when do they get promoted to Associate Principal and Principal levels?''. Her brilliant answer that I still remember and feel great about was, "When they are ready for it.". I am not sure the same holds true for ZS India, as I see many and almost too many getting time bound promotions to even at Principal levels. They at times mention their title as Partner too.
Some say and I agree, that you cannot run ZS like Accenture and TCS as you are only ZS and would remain ZS!
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