Latest News: Technology |  Celebrity |  Movies |  Apple |  Cars |  Business |  Sports |  TV Shows |  Geek


Filed under: News | Technology News


The Colombo Vibe

Jan 30 2014, 6:32am CST | by

The Colombo Vibe

Virtusa is Sri Lanka’s largest employer in the IT sector and the largest tenant in Colombo’s Orion City IT Park, with 150,000 square feet, on the edge of the city. Virtusa’s 2,200 employees spill out of a six-floor building into other space there.

Tuk-tuks, or motorized rickshaws, as well as buses and Prius taxis, line the streets outside the compound. Inside, Virtusa’s neighbors include publishing company Pearson, outsourcing company WNS and MediGain, which processes medical bills and reimbursements.

Using the standard IT open floor plan, Virtusa has what it calls chill-out rooms on each level. These are actually used for brainstorming. Hot pink, gold and black beanbags, couches, coffee tables and big exercise balls are scattered across the brightly painted rooms.

The two office cafeterias, which sell food at subsidized rates, display another side of the company. Some walls are covered with large posters–a smiling young girl in a school uniform, a boy planting a sapling–displaying social work that Virtusa and its employees have done in Sri Lanka, including donating computers to the poorest schools.

Roger Keith Modder, 49, in glasses and a monogrammed shirt, is Virtusa’s chief operating officer, out of his native Colombo. He joined in 2001 from John Keells Group. He says that despite state efforts to boost the tech sector, hurdles remain.

“A key challenge is getting sufficient numbers of high-quality IT graduates,” says Modder. About 8,000 students graduate from Sri Lanka’s IT programs each year, but not many match Virtusa’s needs. Because it could never compete with India’s IT sector on numbers, Virtusa has focused on building products as opposed to doing work that requires a large head count.

“For the IT sector 40% to 60% hires are campus hires,” says Modder. “When you have [so many from] that age group, you need to understand them.” Virtusa is trying to do that internally even as it offers its clients clues to understanding the younger demographic.

For instance, like many companies, Virtusa has banned, internally, social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. But it’s built a platform for its employees that merges all these sites’ features. Known as V+, it looks like a regular Facebook page–and lets you comment, “like” and “reply”–so that their millennial employees can express themselves more honestly.

“With a V+ kind of ecosystem, you can hear what’s going on in the company, what the millennials are thinking. And in the process you’ve put an idea from an engineer’s head onto a platform,” says Modder. –M.B.

Source: Forbes

iPad Air Giveaway. Win a free iPad Air.

You Might Also Like


Shopping Deals


<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/31" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.




blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Leaked iPhone 6 manual shows brand new design
Leaked iPhone 6 manual shows brand new design
The card shows a diagram of all buttons on the Apple iPhone 6
iPhone 6 &#039;Phosphorus&#039; Component Likely a Barometric Pressure Sensor
iPhone 6 'Phosphorus' Component Likely a Barometric Pressure Sensor
The iPhone 6 has been rumored to include a number of new environmental sensors such as an atmospheric pressure sensor.
Deion Sanders' School Opens Despite Losing Charter
Deion Sanders' School Opens Despite Losing Charter
Pro Football Hall of Famer Deion Sanders' Prime Prep Academy in Fort Worth, Tex. opened this week despite its location -- in a shopping center across an adult shop -- being disapproved and losing its charter.
Google sets up a giant Google Maps search terminal in Shibuya
Google sets up a giant Google Maps search terminal in Shibuya
The main goal here is obviously to promote tourism. It also gives the tech giant an opportunity to promote its products, particularly Google Maps.

About the Geek Mind

The “geek mind” is concerned with more than just the latest iPhone rumors, or which company will win the gaming console wars. I4U is concerned with more than just the latest photo shoot or other celebrity gossip.

The “geek mind” is concerned with life, in all its different forms and facets. The geek mind wants to know about societal and financial issues, both abroad and at home. If a Fortune 500 decides to raise their minimum wage, or any high priority news, the geek mind wants to know. The geek mind wants to know the top teams in the National Football League, or who’s likely to win the NBA Finals this coming year. The geek mind wants to know who the hottest new models are, or whether the newest blockbuster movie is worth seeing. The geek mind wants to know. The geek mind wants—needs—knowledge.

Read more about The Geek Mind.