2013 was lackluster year for those seeking jobs. While the business outlook fared better, hiring was subdued as companies did not anticipate an increase in demand in the near future. From a sector perspective, retail and FMCG, pharma and healthcare, and financial services were largely the growth drivers in 2013. Though 2013 marked a year of disappointment on the hiring front, 2014 seems promising. The upcoming national elections coupled with the improvement in the global economic conditions are expected to pull the market out of the guessing phase. In fact, as the year progresses, corporates are expected to come out and invest again automatically leading to talent search.
Fresher graduates however, would still have a difficult time to get their dream jobs. The market is still not a job seeker’s delight and will be unable to accommodate the pool of fresh graduates that is available. Mid level and senior candidates can continue to expect as low growth period; however, niche skills and specialised experience would stand them in good stead. Professionals need to keep in mind that it is important to continue networking and focus on productivity. Apart from this a continued focus on team management and morale will help in better growth.
While last year was the year of single digit increments, 2014 would need to have better hikes, purely to drive and motivate super performers. There would be a sharp difference between the high and low performers, with regards to both financial and non financial awards like bonus, incentives, stock options, promotions and roles etc. The traditional sectors would see higher increments while service sectors are likely to take a hit on increments given the low performing and high attrition in the segment.
Sectorally, FMCG, consumer durables, telecom, retail and hospitality are expected to drive the employment growth. Driven by the consumer demand and spending, the retail and FMCG sector is expected to witness a six per cent increase in its hiring. Pharma and healthcare is also expected to contribute to the buoyancy. The sector is expected to grow by at least 14 per cent and create multiple jobs to add to current strength of over 450,000. The infrastructure industry also is expected to witness an upward trend in hiring once the national elections are over. Meanwhile, IT and IT enabled Services (ITeS) industry; manufacturing and engineering may spoil the party in 2014. In fact, as the IT and ITeS sector restructure themselves, the industry is moving away from being a mass hirer of technical talent to more a need based hirer further bringing down the employment rate. Hiring a ‘productive workforce’ will be another trend that would be witnessed in 2014.
This may put a strain on campus hiring. Though talent is not short, quality is still a challenge. In fact, the year may not be so great for mid and senior level candidates either.
However, professionals with niche skills and specialised experience will witness a steady growth. With regard to compensation, while last year compensation processes were largely linked to performance and growth, this year companies are expected to revise and explore a more motivational approach. Although, most of the sectors will witness stability, hospitality, telecom and banks are likely to be hit by attrition.
-The author is a senior vice president and co-founder TeamLease Services