The L&D market in India is a very fragmented space with a number of service providers. The market can be segmented in various ways such as the pyramid model comprising players from the individual trainers to large service providers. Buyers have a spectrum of service providers to choose from and engage with depending on their particular requirements. It is not odd to see organizations in India work with both individuals as well as large global L&D service providers.
Owing to its highly fragmented nature, it is difficult to estimate the exact size of the L&D market in India. It is no secret, however, that the market has shrunk by at least 15-20 per cent compared to last year. Many factors contributed to this in the last 12 months including economic conditions, the changing nature of the workforce, and the slow adaptability of L&D service providers to the changing market dynamics. It is also important to note, however, that this year will see the revival of the L&D industry in India in a big way. This change will predominantly be driven by the new government coming to power. With a new government, the market sentiment attaches a “feel good” factor to it and Indian corporations will be more forthcoming about their spending on human capital development.
The L&D industry is comprised of four primary segments- the base market, mid-market, premium, and super premium. This segmentation is rooted on the amount of corporation spending as well as service price points. With the current economic conditions not sending too many positive signals, growth and spending in the upper-end of the Indian L&D market may continue to be slower. Companies will continue to look aggressively for options for development capabilities internally. That said, the market perspective looks positive in the five year horizon. The industry will see growth, solutions will evolve in terms of quality, and there will be a big opportunity for the market to scale up.
There is a remarkable shift in the way L&D service are being looked at by buyers & senior leaders in India. The market is slowly seeing a transition from stand-alone programs to “solutioning” to consulting. More and more buyers are looking at the impact of developmental interventions, rather than look at the L&D service space as a menu of “off-the-shelf solutions”. Impact and Quality will be the big differentiators in the coming times and the Indian market will continue to see the introduction of many world-class practices.
As told to People Matters