|WNS (HOLDINGS) LTD filed this Form 6-K on 08/06/2018|
Wage increases may prevent us from sustaining our competitive advantage and may reduce our profit margin.
Salaries and related benefits of our operations staff and other employees in countries where we have delivery centers, in particular India, are among our most significant costs. Wage costs in India have historically been significantly lower than wage costs in the US and Europe for comparably skilled professionals, which has been one of our competitive advantages. However, rapid economic growth in India, increased demand for business process management outsourcing to India, increased competition for skilled employees in India, and regulatory developments resulting in wage increases in India may reduce this competitive advantage. For example, the Government of India has proposed the Code on Wages Bill, 2017, which, if passed, would replace four central labor laws, including the Minimum Wages Act, 1948, the Payment of Wages Act, 1936, the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965, and the Equal Remuneration Act, 1976, and would introduce a national minimum wage for all employees to be administered by the central government. As a result, our wage costs in India may increase. In addition, if the US dollar or the pound sterling declines in value against the Indian rupee, wages in the US or the UK will further decrease relative to wages in India, which may further reduce our competitive advantage. We may need to increase our levels of employee compensation more rapidly than in the past to remain competitive in attracting the quantity and quality of employees that our business requires. Wage increases may reduce our profit margins and have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and cash flows.
Further, following the establishment of our delivery centers in the US in 2014, our operations in the US have expanded and our wage costs for employees located in the UK and the US now represent a larger proportion of our total wage costs. Wage increases in the UK and the US may therefore also reduce our profit margins and have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and cash flows.
Our operating results may differ from period to period, which may make it difficult for us to prepare accurate internal financial forecasts and respond in a timely manner to offset such period to period fluctuations.
Our operating results may differ significantly from period to period due to factors such as client losses, variations in the volume of business from clients resulting from changes in our clients operations, the business decisions of our clients regarding the use of our services, delays or difficulties in expanding our operational facilities and infrastructure, changes to our pricing structure or that of our competitors, inaccurate estimates of resources and time required to complete ongoing projects, currency fluctuations and seasonal changes in the operations of our clients. For example, our clients in the travel and leisure industry experience seasonal changes in their operations in connection with the US summer holiday season, as well as episodic factors such as adverse weather conditions. Transaction volumes can be impacted by market conditions affecting the travel and insurance industries, including natural disasters, outbreak of infectious diseases or other serious public health concerns in Asia or elsewhere (such as the outbreak of the Influenza A (H7N9) virus in various parts of the world) and terrorist attacks. In addition, our contracts do not generally commit our clients to provide us with a specific volume of business.
In addition, the long sales cycle for our services, which typically ranges from three to 12 months, and the internal budget and approval processes of our prospective clients make it difficult to predict the timing of new client engagements. Commencement of work and ramping up of volume of work with certain new and existing clients have in the past been slower than we had expected and may in the future be slower than we expect. Revenue is recognized upon actual provision of services and when the criteria for recognition are achieved. Accordingly, the financial benefit of gaining a new client may be delayed due to delays in the implementation of our services. These factors may make it difficult for us to prepare accurate internal financial forecasts or replace anticipated revenue that we do not receive as a result of those delays. Due to the above factors, it is possible that in some future quarters our operating results may be significantly below the expectations of the public market, analysts and investors.
If our pricing structures do not accurately anticipate the cost and complexity of performing our work, our profitability may be negatively affected.
The terms of our client contracts typically range from three to five years. In many of our contracts, we commit to long-term pricing with our clients, and we negotiate pricing terms with our clients utilizing a range of pricing structures and conditions. Depending on the particular contract, these include input-based pricing (such as full-time equivalent-based pricing arrangements), fixed-price arrangements, output-based pricing (such as transaction-based pricing), outcome-based pricing, and contracts with features of all these pricing models. Our pricing is highly dependent on our internal forecasts and predictions about our projects and the marketplace, which are largely based on limited data and could turn out to be inaccurate. If we do not accurately estimate the costs and timing for completing projects, our contracts could prove unprofitable for us or yield lower profit margins than anticipated. Some of our client contracts do not allow us to terminate the contracts except in the case of non-payment by our client. If any contract turns out to be economically non-viable for us, we may still be liable to continue to provide services under the contract.