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IT hirings rising in telecom & healthcare sectors

Telecom and healthcare sectors are continuing to recruit IT professionals in significant numbers, reveals Sanju Ballurkar, President at Experis IT, ManpowerGroup India, in an exclusive interaction with Express Computer

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What has been the impact of Covid-19, on IT hirings, not only for the IT industry but IT positions across sectors?
As we see it, the impact has been across all sectors but BFSI, healthcare and telecom sectors have escaped from getting the full brunt. Furthermore, the IT services companies have seen a much more impact than the GICs operating out of India.

Any interesting trends you have observed regarding IT recruitments since March this year?
Since March, which is when the lockdown initiated in India, the hiring has been slow but we see clearly a rising trend in AMJ quarter.

Can you share with us the challenges of virtual hiring and how have you set the processes in place as a leading staffing organisation?
Fortunately, we have been ahead of the curve as far as virtual hiring and virtual onboarding is concerned. 95 per cent of all our onboardings in April, May and June have been virtually done. However, a nationwide lockdown does have its own rippling effects. Some of the key challenges include movement of resources across cities, arranging computers and other necessary IT infrastructure for resources, convincing customers for WFH strategies for contract workers, arranging documentation as well as conducting background checks are but some of the challenges that we had to overcome.

Which industries are witnessing IT recruitments, and why? Also, for which positions?
We notice that telecom and healthcare sectors are continuing to hire in significant numbers. For the telecom and healthcare sectors the reasons could be that the long term nature of their projects need sustained hiring. Furthermore, there is certainly a possibility of spur in demand for telecom sector due to worldwide WFH wave. Similarly, the healthcare sector is witnessing high activity during the Covid-19 emergency.

Which IT skills remain the most in demand? Has the pandemic and the lockdown driven the demand for hiring people with particular skill sets?
While there are no major technology related swings that can be specifically be attributed to the pandemic, but we continue to see substantial demand for data scientists, all underlying technologies in AI/ML and digital transformation, cloud and infrastructure, cyber security, etc.

With news of retrenchments, how do you foresee the demand vs supply panning out for IT hirings in the next six months?
We are already noticing a linearly upward trend in hiring from April to June. We have strong indications that the hiring would continue to rise through the next two quarters including the OND quarter which usually sees a dip in hiring.

Are you witnessing any impact on IT salaries?
Well, many companies have put their annual salary appraisals on hold. Some have even decided to implement a temporary cut in salaries. But that is as far as it goes. There is enough churn in the industry and employers are completely aware of the need to retain the best talent because the Covid-19 related business impact is not permanent. There are clear signs of recovery and growth around the corner.

How will the pandemic and it’s aftermath work out for the gig economy?
The pandemic will only accelerate what was anyway a trend that had caught-up as far as the gig economy is concerned. The breakdown of work itself and how it is delivered will take a major shift towards use of gig workforces.

Is there any other important factor related to IT hirings, you wish to highlight?
Another major trend that is being witnessed is the large scale acceptance of Work From Home models. There will be high level of interest in evolving the WFH as a mainstay for many organisations. This will also mean the geographic boundaries will have diminished significance as far as hiring is concerned.

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