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Preserving for the future CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? The power-full Hindujas He continues the focus on social amelioration Shanti and Sadhana through Music Parliament in paralysis... Contrarian cousins Paytm karo... New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… Put expensive assets created to use... Solar, solar everywhere … For whom the bell tolls? A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… TGS- The king storyteller Computation of GDP – conundrums continue ONGC at KG Basin Muffled voices for merit… Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik Waning interest in public discussions… L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… Medical costs hit the roof... CII projects higher growth… A yen for wastage… Another Indian music maestro at the UN The rise and rise of KCP Wanted: a second airport for Chennai No engine for this car Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... Protest masters... Return to king coal for urea... Discoms deserve better… A professional at the helm of IRDA... GNS - 100: our first subscriber Build close rapport with business leaders Boy, can you beat these? A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Funding the un-funded Gay abandon in pricing Welcome focus on core competence Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! Shipping woes of Chennai companies Why this malaise in medical education? Mersal magnified Banning booze... F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing This scant respect for Law Solar thermal shines… Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy Tribute The Gulf aviation boom Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna Alexa – Talking Wikipedia More heat than light Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL IAS invades NDDB... More tributes to GR WTO Meet: resolved to meet again S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal IPL - no surprise this scam A friendly business group An enemy’s enemy is a friend Shale gas and its shallow future Poor quality of university VCs Editor's Says The rise and fall of Annamalai University B H Kothari - a tribute Small units prefers to remain small... Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School Delhi is distant Tribute – UCAL Selvan… Five star activism stalls development activity Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research Quality silica from Neyveli An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... When online building permits work…. Which side are you, Montek? Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities More Shakthi to Das’ elbow Readers' Mail Multi-faceted Venkat Delhi Chalo... No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi A more liberated TN… Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... 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The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines Where a state respects its litterateurs… When nations steal growth from one another… Remembering Indira Sivasailam... Quality education through the PPP mode Rahman at CIC Airlines in India: cost and space There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! Demise of a media baron... Convulsions in The Hindu Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu Adharma of opposition politics Editor's Notes A glass full of corruption Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... Auto components surge… Haul over the coal Welcome GST Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! Come elections, come advertisements... Align crops to agro climate endowments… When Ratan Tata visited SRM Of course, Gujarat is vibrant EVM is tamper-proof Sri Lanka votes for change Streamlining mandatory third party cover Modi storms Silicon Valley Don’t seem to feel the pulse… Lalu’s envy, India’s pride Fortune 500 review Revving up the manufacturing sector Why land prices zoom in TN? …and of a popular trade leader The few handicaps... Wise Presidents Moily’s bold thrust An inexplicable neglect A rich pool of talent not utilised…. Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated London, London Narayan Fortune for Indian Airlines A proud Madrasi Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara Gas is the way forward A welcome initiative by the judiciary Tatas moving out of urea production... Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... Secularism and anti-Hinduism Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist More Shakti to resource mobilisation... Modi and the lady Fall in crude prices help in oil sector reform Music happens Pharma – overdose of copying When small is no larger beautiful.. Where is Rajaji? China invests in India Excel Generators provide the vital back-up Sweet news for TN sugar mills Road development slows down Tax agriculture The star of Spencers is no more The brown list of Venkitaramanan TELANGANA at last…BUT Polls and promises Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health Make standards certification mandatory... All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya Increasing non co-operation of state leaders Mu Sigma – is no more Sweeter prospects for sugar Making ‘my Amaravati’... Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Nuclear power at the nucleus Marketing expert Balagopal is no more No Maha Koottani in TN... Breaththrough in malaria control TIAM turns a full cycle Whistle-Stop Tour of Raghuram Rajan A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science Should we change the official year? The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model Maximising the micro pricing … Tatas moving out of urea production... The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more Telangana in top gear… For whom the MIDS bell tolls? SoA @ 80 The why of tax incentives Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai Kinetic Karnataka Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai The Jan Dhan bonanza Delhi is distant… The Swadeshi Trump Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... Towards speedy justice Plummeting profits of PSBs Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami Recognition to role of NBFCs.... The nuclear option How Air-India loses customs... Fuel for thought Poor representation for Kerala and TN in Cabinet Things happen by accident and not by design... Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked EEC at the National Media Centre Delhi returns to BJP TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector Valli, they are more marginalised The balancing act Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria Revive development banks... Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel GM Technology at last! When the President was rendered homeless… Kudos to NDTV... L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles IPL type auction for VCs? A think tank for Chennai He saved millions from starvation... MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways West Bengal: mindless malignancy Intellectual of rare qualities Kulandai was a giant TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital Vibrant Gujarat Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil?
 
Welcome focus on core competence

The logic of sticking to knitting seems to be impacting large public sector corporations. When such a project was set up in a green field site far removed from major cities, there was the need to provide a vast range of facilities and social infrastructure. For example, when the Rourkela Steel Plant was set up in the 1950s in Odisha, the area lacked basic amenities like housing, roads, power, schools, hospitals, markets, etc. Substantial portion of the initial capital had to be spent on creating these facilities. Over the years the administration had to cope with managing a vast range of activities that had been taking its attention away from the core activity of producing steel. It plunged several public sector corporations into losses. It also resulted in bloating the workforce to levels that became unmanageable.

Tata Steel at one time had a workforce of over 70,000. A large portion of these were engaged in activities that had little to do with the production of steel. eg: managing the township, providing water supply, electricity, maintenance of roads, running schools, hospitals, sports, museum, etc. A bold decision was taken to relieve the company of most of these non-core activities. Aided by the boom in the steel sector post-2000, the company effectively hived off many of these activities to separate institutions and offered liberal VRS packages. In quick time it reduced total workforce by half. Several other corporations followed suit and succeeded in improving productivity per employee and focused on their core activities.

This has become necessary in the context of stiff competition from across the globe. There is pressure to improve incremental capital output ratio and ensure higher productivity per unit of capital employed. This has been achieved by a few sectors like the automobile and auto component industry by taking recourse to a higher degree of automation, vendor development and improving supply chain management.

 

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