Companies to stay bullish on campus hiring this year

The campus hiring process is a win-win situation for both the employer and the job seeker. While it helps organisations to get on-board fresh talent from top educational institutions, candidates also get a platform to showcase their skills. Young graduates will play a key role in the overall hiring scenario in 2014 too, say experts.

Hirers welcome fresh talent. According to Amit Das, president and chief human resource officer at Reliance Communications Ltd, "Campus hiring will continue to be very important for organisations in 2014 for building up their fresh talent pipeline that will be groomed from within to become future leaders. The economic slowdown will not have any direct impact on the intent of organisations to hire fresh talent from campuses."

Kamlesh Dangi, group chief people officer, Religare Enterprises Ltd, says, "Most of the regular campus recruiters will maintain their hiring numbers though finance firms have taken a cautious approach with a slight decrease in campus recruits. Tech companies have been doing well and they may hire more graduates as compared to previous years. The slowdown does raise concerns over future growth projections and organisations are being cautious while building capacity. There is some impact of the slowdown but campus hiring usually gets affected more from sector-based performance than as a macro-economic result."

Many institutions today are following a bouquet approach where students tend to take courses which interest them and match with their career aspirations rather than going for one academic stream. "As a recruiter, we like to focus on candidates who are cultural fits, who are open for different roles, are keen to build a career in the industry in which we operate and, therefore, have acquired a relatively good knowledge base for the role that is offered. Like all previous years, even though the number of MBA seats has increased significantly, we continue to see high quality intake coming through other streams too," says Dangi.

According to him, financial services and IT companies are expected to recruit larger numbers in the coming year and both marketing and finance batches are likely to attract most of the recruiters. "Salary for freshers is likely to remain range bound and we will not see much increase though companies may look at increasing the variable component," he says.

Candidates must acquaint themselves with organisational dynamics and build necessary skills to manage ambiguity and uncertainty in the business environment before they step into any organisation, advises Das.

"In addition to regular roles that are being offered at campuses, students should be open to various new roles which offer future growth opportunities such as analytics, social media, etc. as they may offer newer learning opportunities to them. Also, campus curriculum is just one of the sources of learning and students should use these years to explore many other sources of learning and not just restrict themselves to what is being taught," adds Dangi.

Experts believe that progressive organisations have always looked at campus hiring as a long-term measure to build talent and students must be prepared to work in different situations. "Campus hiring is an important indicator of growth and 2014 looks to be a year where organisations would be optimistic yet cautious.  In recent times, volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity have become a reality. Students should not to get intimidated by the environment and not to take a short-term decision where they may end up in roles or sectors that would not give them career fulfilment. The first career move is extremely crucial and hence, it is critical that students give this a lot of thought," says Ashutosh Telang, executive vice president and global head - HR, Marico.


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