Friday, April 25, 2008

Jobs in India- Companies to change hiring tactics!

It is interesting to note how different companies react –to stay ahead and be perhaps immune to the US recession/ subprime crisis-and how that has an impact on the job scene in India.
-A recent survey by Teamlease predicts that the infrastructure and telecom sectors will grow-while the IT and ITES companies have a lesser growth than last year. However, the well grounded India story would also see a robust hiring in the FMCG, retail and insurance sectors.
-the hiring trend in the tier II & tier III cities and rural areas is increasing while the same isn’t a favourable situation in the metros –forcing companies to adopt innovative ways of attracting talent..including a mobile bus to make it easier for call centre employees to explore options.. or “bus- drop ins" interviews!!
-With a scuttled optimism, one often relates reduced hiring means to lesser jobs!! The reality is that the numbers are still quite large...it is just that it is lesser than last year! Just three among the top 5 biggies in India - TCS (30000 to 35000) ,Infosys (25000), and Satyam (15000 account to hiring plans of about 75000 professionals-while some of the IT MNCs still want to hire 40000!!
-A point of concern..is India's share of recruiting coming down? While Accenture will hire 13000 in India, their world wide plans are to hire 60,000- there is a definite opportunity loss for some of us!
- The intention to hire across all managerial levels is gradually on the rise as companies looks to move up the value chain of outsourced IT services and deliver “value” not “price” to its clients. For eg Infosys predicts their fresher: lateral ratio changes from the current levels of 66: 34!
- While most IT firms are trying to reduce their dependence on the US markets, and focus more in Europe, some companies look to hire a different mix of employees – and reward them differently!! The Indian market expects an annual hike of 11-13% while abroad –the general trend is only 4-6%!
Personally, I feel that the increased pressure on margins would ensure companies relook at their hiring processes:

-certain companies are increasingly resorting to the RPO (recruitment process outsourcing) model and focus their management attention to retention and talent management!

-some companies have adopted and upgraded some of their recruitment consultants as partners-rather than, often 'dozens of vendors' as earlier- to manage the entire supply chain of talent.

Jobs in India- Companies to change hiring tactics!

It is interesting to note how different companies react –to stay ahead and be perhaps immune to the US recession/ subprime crisis-and how that has an impact on the job scene in India.

-A recent survey by Teamlease predicts that the infrastructure and telecom sectors will grow-while the IT and ITES companies have a lesser growth than last year. However, the well grounded India story would also see a robust hiring in the FMCG, retail and insurance sectors.

-the hiring trend in the tier II & tier III cities and rural areas is increasing while the same isn’t a favourable situation in the metros –forcing companies to adopt innovative ways of attracting talent..including a mobile bus to make it easier for call centre employees to explore options.. or “bus- drop ins" interviews!!

-With a scuttled optimism, one often relates reduced hiring means to lesser jobs!! The reality is that the numbers are still quite large...it is just that it is lesser than last year! Just three among the top 5 biggies in India - TCS (30000 to 35000) ,Infosys (25000), and Satyam (15000 account to hiring plans of about 75000 professionals-while some of the IT MNCs still want to hire 40000!!

-A point of concern..is India's share of recruiting coming down? While Accenture will hire 13000 in India, their world wide plans are to hire 60,000- there is a definite opportunity loss for some of us!

- The intention to hire across all managerial levels is gradually on the rise as companies looks to move up the value chain of outsourced IT services and deliver “value” not “price” to its clients. For eg Infosys predicts their fresher: lateral ratio changes from the current levels of 66: 34!

- While most IT firms are trying to reduce their dependence on the US markets, and focus more in Europe, some companies look to hire a different mix of employees – and reward them differently!! The Indian market expects an annual hike of 11-13% while abroad –the general trend is only 4-6%!
Personally, I feel that the increased pressure on margins would ensure companies relook at their hiring processes:
-certain companies are increasingly resorting to the RPO (recruitment process outsourcing) model and focus their management attention to retention and talent management!
-some companies have adopted and upgraded some of their recruitment consultants as partners-rather than, often 'dozens of vendors' as earlier- to manage the entire supply chain of talent.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Project Management openings in Brisbane-Subtransmission

It was by a mistake that I posted the earlier job here instead of the usual blog for jobs !!

Here is one international job-the first one I got thru my Australian affiliate!

Her client is one of Australia's fastest growing organisation with close to 4000 employees, 6.6billion total assets -and providing electricity since 80 years to close to 3million people in Queensland!

There are Project management positions in line with the growth in major engineering projects
Salaries are in the range of 90-100 K Australian dollars -and so engineers with a strong proven track record in large HV electrical projects including planning, estimating,design,procurement, construction, manufacturing, network operations, testing and commissioning for voltages up to 132KV would be preferred.

Should you know anyone desirous of relocating to Australia-and working in a semi-government environment, please feel free to reach [email protected] and I shall be glad to provide more inputs!

General Manager- Contracts- Hydel power plant

One of my clients- with projects of close to 5000MW capacity of Hydro power plants, is looking for senior management professionals with contracts experience.
The ideal person would have above 20 years of experience- and those with experience in civil construction of hydel plants would be preferred.
The place of posting is in Gurgaon/

Jobs in India for expats-a raincheck

Oh yes, last week, a pal of mine Ishani -had reached out to me to check if I had anything to a story she was doing on expats in India! Well, specifically, she sought

1. Are there any numbers available on the people coming to India on employment visas and business visas? Has there been a huge increase in these numbers? If so, which are the sectors that are seeing the largest number of expats coming to work in India?

2. In terms of getting visas processed, do any sectors or people from any particular country face difficulties and red tape? Generally, how smooth or difficult is the process of getting work permits, including renewals after expiry or moving to other jobs in India?

Here are the thoughts I penned;

The kind of numbers I work on -is really marginal-and so I really cant give u any facts-as much as trends!! One can be sure they are significantly increased in the last 12 months.

I can tell u there are some mandates I am working on..

1. A Singaporean infra company building an expressway in Bangalore..is looking for white skin- to head VP operations and maintenance role!

2. Some Malaysian construction cos are having projects in India..across diff regions-industrial, residential, commercial etc, and they too prefer expats of their /Singaporean nationality for senior management roles. They are all for specific projects though..and come on business visa

3. Of course, I know one expat American personally- who came in about 5-6 yrs back to India, invited by Reliance group to set up the telecom business- he was on an employment visa for about 2 yrs..after which he was to make himself dispensable by hiring his successors etc. He did his job..but lost his heart to India..and has since stayed back ..taking up some smaller assignments..I can imagine isn't easy to get long term contracts

4. Have noticed a monthly bash of Britishers in Bangalore a couple of months back in a five star hotel.

5. yes, there are a lot of European companies also seconding senior executives to kick start Indian ops..and they come on 2 yrs packages..expats salaries-can assure u they are obscene numbers compared to their quality of managerial exp,:-)!

6/sectors are mostly infra, retail, telecom, hi tech, bio tech.Most of my clients arrange for the visa-and so the transfers at the end of projects have been pretty smooth. I guess isn't rampant poaching as in Indian companies..where people leave half way..there is definitely some ethics and integrity displayed ..

I am awaiting Ishani to complete her story and see it online next week..

Should you be knowing of something specific, please let me know. I can forward it to her asap

Network orchestration..truly!!

It is exactly a week since the Nashville conference is over-and so I am back at office-after a very eventful trip.

It was an absolutely new experience for me-being a part of a 200 plus group-in a new country-with not a single person I had earlier met!! But by the end of the 5 day event, it was indeed difficult to tear one away from the place-as one had forged quite a few relationships-not knowing if one would meet any of them again in the near future!! The pals I made were spread across Argentina, Australia, Canada, Hongkong, Korea, Phillipines, North America, and Taiwan!!

Carrying on from my last week's hope, in the 'flat world'-I feel success is less about what a company can do-and more about what it can connect to!!And if one were to look at the kind of opportunities that have opened up in my last ten days of connections, you will see what I mean:

-Investment Research Directors in Asia/Middle East/former Soviet Union

-Marketing Head -India for telecom and wireless MNC player

-Project Manager at Mumbai for an ethernet business domain MNC

-There is an opportunity that we are exploring -for an Indian major company setting up 3 ODCs, this year in different continents. The Global HR head would feel comfortable not having to deal with a dozen consultants-whom he has to orient about the culture and nitty gritty-across 3 different countries. Can we at Options front end the client here-with my affiliates in Canada, and Phillipines can be adding the (g)local touch?
- An affiliate in Houston Texas has now more opportunities for Oil & Gas professionals in Saudi and Qatar that he has all across the US!
- A specialist headhunter in US-who has been focussing on the process industry, has a bunch of mandates for Indian professionals..especially Chemical Engineers from IIT -and already in the US!!
Some of the other takeaways-have been the best practices some of the BIG BILLERS. Personally it was a very self assuring thought for me-that we at Options have been toying with most of the benchmarks- though obviously -not at all of them together and consistently ;-)!

I shall try and list out some of the learnings on a later post.

Meanwhile, do let me know if any of you can let me know how recruitment firms, across different parts of the world, with independent niches, can probably come up with a fluid, ever changing network -that can help clients and candidates alike- to conceptualise, design, execute and deliver favourable solutions in the virtual world!!
PS-A close pal of mine-is an investment banker in NY and is expanding his team this year in London and Singapore- and wants some specialist commodity traders. A month ago, I may not even have thought of being part of a solution.
Now, I am dreaming....how soon can I connect the loose dots....The Music city of Nashville may well have put us on the way to CHA-CHING!!

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Global Talent Acquisition-Network Orchestration!!

Tomorrow I am off for the NPA international conference at Nashville, USA- hoping to meet as many international recruiting partners as I can-from among over 200 associates across the 6 continents-who will be attending the event.


Just to recap- I had become a member of this global recruiting network about 3 months ago-and suddenly a plethora of options has been opened up. The idea of working in a network of similar minded independent premier recruiting firms -was soon short lived as I had three false starts. An American partner wanted me to source a software professional for Russia. Another offered to place infrastructure professionals ( of a specific nationality) with his international client in India-and my client's foray into a South East Asian country got delayed due to some political event. So, in order to understand my partners better, I thought I shall attend this international conference so that I could explain 'the value propositions' I bring to the table.


The last fortnight or so, have been very enlightening for me-as I went about taking stock of the environment- preparing a story to present " Discover India- a global talent hub"-in order to help others understand where I come from!


And so, it was serendipity that I chanced upon a podcast today. Inspired by MrThomas Friedman's masterpiece,Victor and William Fung, group chairman and managing director of Hong Kong-based Li & Fung, and Yoram (Jerry) Wind, a professor of marketing at Wharton, deal with this issue in their new book, Competing in a Flat World: Building Enterprises for a Borderless World, spoke with [email protected].


Well, the transcription gives a very good insight for us to learn and benchmark against the best practices of manufacturing - eg fast response & dispersed production units, servicing of pockets of niche markets, cooperative relationships,..all for providing better customer value proposition!


The speakers point out:




  • the world is getting flatter in the sense that it is now easier to communicate and for parts and materials to go from one country to another for processing. Our ability to use the best factories, at the best locations, to manufacture any order, is becoming a reality.


  • the needs of the market are changing very rapidly. The need for flexibility makes it imperative for a network of suppliers instead of a single monolithic, sort of hardwired, vertically integrated manufacturer in the first place. The need to keep providing all of the options needed by the market is obviously always a challenge.


  • there are needs for networks to customize a custom supply chain that is the best in delivering the right product, at the right price, at the right time, based on the right specifications of the consumers.

What are my learning's? We could be on the right path!! I am part of three separate networks. Each of them loosely knit and yet, non-exclusive. While each one does allow us to stretch and rise to the standards required, each leaves us enough space to learn from better techniques and best practices as we keep transacting with each other.


Over the last 7-8 years, I have had several informal associations with recruiters in India-some of them with complementary skills across the country (specialists in IT hiring, pharma hiring, process industry, financial services etc). Essentially we flanked each other -with the reach to specific candidates ( Options & returning Indians) -and relationships my associates had with their clients-across the 10 major cities in India. While we exactly haven't had coffers filling, we have all become great pals- with a tremendous respect for each other's abilities


About 4 yrs ago, we became part of ERA which has agencies of varying sizes- and business models (selection, staffing and search)- in a growing fraternity that embodies ethics and best practices in the Indian subcontinent. We have been having spurts of collaborative efforts in special interest groups focussed on retail /insurance industry for example.


During the last 10 days my NPA network has been testing waters!! A Thailand based associate has given us a mandate for their Singaporean client to hire an expat with infrastructure experience for a project based in Bangalore. We are at the brink of identifying some one interested!!


A KPO client of mine-an Indian MNC- is exploring opportunities to set up offshore development centres in Canada, Philippines, and Hungary this year to help improve their customer offerings. And would Options become an orchestrator- leveraging on my NPA members in the above regions-so that my clients can benefit from our network?


Time will tell...


One thing is for sure. In the threat of a possible US recession-it is imperative for companies to come up with innovative processes and solutions to improve their value propositions..and help companies excel. Wasn't it Darwin who said..isn't the biggest or the strongest-but those who can respond fastest to the changing world!!


Can someone help me put the jigsaw pieces together-and see the larger picture? I shall be glad to hear from those well wishers reaching me offline -invariably have been helping me think through the maze.


Yes, communication, internet -and globalisation has been a great catalyst. As I embark for a promising get-together - it does not bother me that I am yet to physically meet any of them!!