Thursday, 26 July 2012

Weak IT hiring to hit low-tier colleges, cities

Weak results and the persistent challenging conditions in the dominant markets of the US and Europe are likely to dent the Indian IT industry's hiring this year, says experts. The most affected would be tier-2 institutions and small town colleges. With requirements going down, hiring is expected to be completed at fewer centres.

"Fewer campuses will be covered this time. Also, a lot of hiring will happen in locations closer to company offices where projects are being executed. This may leave out smaller locations," said S Murlidhar, CEO of Merit-Trac , a skills assessment firm that works closely with many IT companies in designing and administering tests. "Tier-2 institutions are likely to suffer big time."

Hiring wasn't strong last year too and the trend will continue this year, said Murlidhar . "Last year was one of correction. With respect to top 10% of our clients, which include most of the large IT majors, hiring was down 30% last year based on our testing data. No rebound can be expected this year either," he said.

However, an official from a top IT firm disagreed. "I don't think there was any correction in hiring last year. Also, I don't expect the number of campuses covered to come down, especially when we are talking about large tier-1 firms. If we take the last reference point of 2009 when hiring was weak, large firms still covered all the campuses they used to go to," said the official.

On the issue of increasing number of people on the bench and the deferred joining dates, Nasscom president Som Mittal said that around 1,10,000 students have already been inducted and he expects all the remaining to join the workforce by March next year. "It will be done in a staggered fashion as per business requirements ," he said. He was speaking on the sidelines of the Nasscom-HR summit held in Chennai. "Larger firms will be the major players in on-campus hiring while smaller firms will go for off-campus hiring ," he said.

In the years when the going was good, IT companies - mainly the small ones - used to go to campuses for hiring earlier than September-October. This year, many companies are holding on and are likely to begin hiring only in September. Nasscom has suggested to the companies that campus hiring should begin in September. Larger firms are also waiting for their financial results before they decide on the amount of hiring they intend to do.

Source : TOI


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