Hiring surpasses pre-COVID levels as India completes one year of Janata Curfew

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Hiring activity across various sectors in India, which recorded a continuous decline in the second quarter of last year due to the unprecedented lockdown measures, has been on a gradual growth trajectory since the third quarter of 2020 and surpassed the pre-Covid-19 levels in 2021, finds GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

An analysis of GlobalData’s Job Analytics Database reveals that hiring is much more pronounced in sectors such as technology, retail, consumer, auto and pharma in 2021.

Following the first nationwide lockdown announcement on 23 March 2020, India’s hiring activity took a strong hit. Jobs open for recruitment reduced significantly in Q2 2020 with strict restriction on movement and the subsequent extension of lockdown. However, as restrictions eased in a phased manner, hiring regained momentum since Q3 2020.

Ajay Thalluri, Business Fundamentals Analyst at GlobalData, says: “Majority of the Indian companies were quick to react and realign business strategies to adapt to work-from-home environment that possibly led to the decrease in hiring activity in the short-run. Additionally, the impact of the pandemic on business operations led many conglomerates and global MNCs to put a check on the recruitment costs.”

However, hiring regained pace with companies in the tech sector dominating job postings. Despite a significant drop in recruitment during Q2 2020, the technology sector continues to create most jobs in India.

Retail and consumer sectors were resilient with hiring remaining relatively even in 2020. Auto sector took a massive hit but started to recover in 2021. But, it is the pharma sector that saw incremental increase in hiring and more companies continue to add jobs in 2021.

Hiring landscape in India is dominated by Accenture PLC, Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp, Amazon.com Inc, Avenue Supermarts Ltd (DMart), Novartis AG, Cipla Ltd, PepsiCo Inc, Johnson Controls-Hitachi Air Conditioning India Limited, Bosch Ltd, and Marriott International Inc. The companies together contributed to about 20% of the total job postings between January 2020 and March 2021.

Thalluri concludes: “India’s hiring evolved positively since the first lockdown in March 2020 that led to layoffs, pay cuts and even terminations. The strong hiring sentiment also indicates improving economic activity that was ravaged in 2020. While technology sector is likely to generate most jobs, it is the pharma sector that is anticipated to grow and add jobs.”

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