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India shines in hiring, but not enough

If you are looking for a job, don’t expect the mood to turn bright until July. India is shining as a hiring destination compared with other nations, but only just. The outlook is bleak for two more quarters, because those who want to recruit are feeling hazy, says a survey by global human resource firm Manpower Inc.

business Updated: Mar 11, 2009 00:34 IST
HT Correspondent

If you are looking for a job, don’t expect the mood to turn bright until July.

India is shining as a hiring destination compared with other nations, but only just. The outlook is bleak for two more quarters, because those who want to recruit are feeling hazy, says a survey by global human resource firm Manpower Inc.

A majority of Indian employers remain undecided about their hiring or firing plans for the April-June quarter. The consolation is that the job market in India looking marginally better than the gloomy last quarter and is certainly better than its global counterparts.

"Globally, India is the strongest and is still a promising land for those seeking jobs. However, employers are in a wait-and-watch mode,” Naresh Malhan, managing director, Manpower India, told HT. India with a Net Employment Outlook of 25 % has emerged as the most optimistic market in job opportunities amongst 33 countries.

The Net Employment Outlook only indicates an employers' intention to hire and is measured by subtracting the percentage of surveyed employers anticipating downsizing from the number of those indicating an increase in headcount.

The Net Employment Outlook improved marginally from the last quarter when it hit a four-year low of 19 per cent. However, it is down 17 per cent from the same period last year.

The US and China have indicated an NEO of 1 per cent and 4 per cent respectively. However, about 64 per cent Indian employers that participated in the survey have indicated no change in their recruitment plans, reflecting a mood of uncertainty in the job market.

Sectors such as transportation and utilities, wholesale and retail trade, finance, insurance and real estate, manufacturing, public administration and education and services have indicated a positive hiring outlook. However, mining and construction sectors might see some lay-offs during the upcoming quarter.

"The declining trend has been arrested," Malhan said. "Whether there will be an upward trend will become clearer only after June quarter."

Within India, the Eastern region which has so far not seen as much growth in telecommunications and retail industries compared with other zones is likely to offer maximum job opportunities, Manpower said.