Sectors of India Inc to See Rise in Hiring in 2021

According to professional recruitment services firm Michael Page India’s ‘Talent Trends 2021 Report’, the coronavirus pandemic badly affected economies across Asia-Pacific, including India, slashing hiring trends drastically (by 18%) in the last one year. However, the survey also found that optimism has started to show, with about 53% of companies in India looking to increase their headcounts in 2021.

For 2021, the country shows a bright viewpoint, with 60% of the employers surveyed planning to raise salaries, while 55% of the intending to pay bonus payments and 43% willing to pay over one month’s worth of bonus. Moreover, 53% of companies are ready to boost headcounts this year. The findings were drafted from a survey across 12 Asia-Pacific markets, including in India, among more than 5,500 companies and 21,000 workers, among whom over 3,500 are directors or CXOs.

According to Michael Page India Managing Director Nicolas Dumoulin, “Technology and healthcare sectors witnessed significant activity even during the lockdown phase given the sudden increase in demand for relevant talent across functions.  Hiring activities among internet-based businesses such as e-commerce and education technology remained relatively robust across India and is expected to maintain the momentum in 2021 as well.”

The report also revealed that the healthcare sector is likely to witness the largest share of rise in salary at an average increase of 8%, while next to follow will be fast-moving consumer goods (7.6%) and e-commerce or internet services (7.5%).

Report also suggests –

  • Technology advancement in India is most comprehensive in software-as-a-service (SaaS), health-tech, edutech and gaming sectors which created rising demand for skilled manpower in the Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning space.
  • Many businesses have leveraged the availability of Indian techies keen to return due to the pandemic.
  • More than 74% of tech-companies in the country anticipate a 14% increase in headcount and are also weighing the option of hiring talents that are remotely available, by offering flexibility to the suitable candidates in a hybrid work model.
  • Rise in demand is also witnessed in hiring at leadership roles in private equity, venture capital as well as other asset classes on buy-side like credit or distressed, hedge funds, public markets and impact funds. A trend that is likely to continue throughout the year.
  • Many non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) and fin-tech companies are expected to prioritize skill sets like analytics-driven risk, digital marketing, strategy-driven portfolio management collections, alliances, and partnerships.
  • More than 68% e-commerce businesses of the country expect a 12% increase in headcount in 2021. Escalation in the e-commerce sector has also increased the number of tech-enabled platforms in logistics and warehousing.
  • Industrial warehousing boosted demand in real estate. 44% of Indian property and construction companies are now expecting a 10% headcount rise in 2021.
  • Essential delivery and hyper-local start-ups saw growth in 2020, which raised demand for profit and loss heads and product management experts.
  • Indian Start-ups assessed their key businesses and remained focused on profitability in 2020. On the other hand big corporations increased their reach and established new lines of business- a trend likely to continue through 2021.

Indian IT firms lined up robust hiring plans for 2021-22

Also recent data and reports suggest that the IT firms of the country have lined up robust hiring plans for 2021-22. It is pertinent to note that Infosys won the largest deal ever in its history from German automotive major Daimler, estimated at $3.2 billion. Again, TCS bagged a large contract from Prudential Financial. Wipro clinched a big one with German retailer Metro. Wipro is anticipating a talent battle in the IT sector in the upcoming few months as companies are stepping up hiring.

The top four IT firms — TCS, Infosys, HCL Technologies and Wipro — collectively plan to hire 91,000 from campuses, a little higher than last year. Most of the ongoing financial year’s campus hiring would have been concluded before businesses were hit by the pandemic. Companies generally have honoured those offers, though some with a lag. Recently published media reports say that, TCS executive VP and global HR head Milind Lakkad feel the company is likely to hire the same number of freshers for the next year as it did this year (about 40,000). Experts say that the top five digital skills in demand are React JS Developer, Java Full Stack Developer, Azure, Android Developer, and Angular JS Developer.

IT Giants on hiring spree

Infosys is going to hire 24,000 college graduates in India in the next financial year, much more than 15,000 that it had planned for the current one. Again, HCL Technologies plans to hire 15,000 freshers in India and 1,500-2,000 people on-site in the 2022-ending fiscal

According to HCL Technologies chief HR officer Apparao V V, “We are doing 33% more than what we had targeted and we see a fair bit of acceleration in Q3 and Q4. The visa environment, compensation revisions and countries looking inward have put a cap in terms of the talent available in those countries. If customers scale up their engagement, they have to go where the skills are. Last year, 70% of our increase in manpower was in India and 30% outside India. This year, it was almost 90%-10%. We see huge ramp-ups in India.”

Experts say it is all about the demand and more the demand more are the opportunities. The demand is mostly infrastructure-related and India mindshare is on the rise. Also as the world looks at a post-pandemic recovery, businesses all over the country are speeding up digital programmes and investments. Many also feel that campus recruitment will be an effective tool to reinforce digital portfolios and delivery.

On-demand IT skills

In terms of salaries too, 2021 is likely to be a good year for people with skills like cyber security, blockchain, augmented reality, user interface and user experience. The current pay package for such professionals with 5-7 years of experience is now nearly Rs 20 lakh per annum. According to HR advisers it is likely to increase by 20-25.

Recently, Ernst and Young also said that to expand its digital capabilities the firm will induct nearly 9,000 new hires in India in diverse technology positions like in areas including artificial intelligence, machine learning, cyber security, analytics and other emerging technologies – across all member firms including the global delivery centres. These hires will be.

On the other hand work from home has increased speed in the digital transformation of companies and with rise in remote working environments, security of data and information gained unprecedented importance. This in turn will create a demand for cyber security professionals across industries. Blockchain being a secure system of maintaining ledgers and financial transactions, experts in the field will also see high demand. Another space that is fast catching the fancy of users is the e-gaming sector which will lead to more demand for people to build games and hence UI/UX skill is going to gain more importance in 2021.

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