Even as the economy continues to grapple under the unprecedented impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, India Inc expects to start hiring blue-collar and entry-level workers with a spur in demand in hiring expected in Q3 2020, ahead of the festive season. These findings were released today by OLX People, India's leading tech-powered HR Platform as part of its first annual “Employer Sentiment Survey” conducted in June 2020.
The survey states that 85 percent of employers say there may be an increase in the recruitment of blue-collar and entry-level staff ahead of the festive season this year. Of these, 40 percent were confident of witnessing a significant hiring surge in this segment in their organizations. Around 12 percent of the organizations anticipated continuing the hiring freeze.
The survey confirms that the revival in hiring will be led by e-commerce and ITeS with logistics and companies in food tech following close behind. Over the years, the e-commerce sector has consistently witnessed a surge in hiring of blue-collar workers in the second half of the year owing to the preparation of their festive sales.
The experience of the pandemic has shifted what companies may have to provide in addition to salary to attract and retain blue-collar workers. The survey with employers suggests that the key determinant in a post-COVID world would be job security and health and social security benefits. Nearly 64 percent of employers say this would be the case while more than 50 percent of employers are considering including health and social security benefits for blue-collar and entry-level workers, and nearly 32 percent of employers confirmed providing health benefits to blue-collar workers.
With a surge in hiring expected in the next quarter of the year, employers did reveal being concerned about anticipated shortage but do not expect blue-collar worker wages to be any higher than before.
As per the survey, companies are optimistic about business recovery within this year itself. While nearly 53 percent of companies are confident of business recovery within the next 3 months, another 32 percent of companies are hopeful of business recovery within the next six months. Of the companies surveyed, nearly 40 percent have been semi operational being in essential services. All, 100 percent of the e-commerce and ITeS firms surveyed said they expect to resume their operations fully by the end of October this year.
“Companies are currently deliberating their recruitment strategies as a result of the current economic crisis. The impact of the lockdown on blue-collar gig workers has been adverse. While the delivery staff is still needed in essential services, many discretionary service companies have shut shop. Now as the nation is removing the lockdown in a phased manner, the demand for blue, grey-collar, and entry-level jobs is expected to increase. There is already a spurt in demand for pickers, packers, and delivery partners in urban India,” said Tarun Sinha, Head of OLX People (Horizontal Business Unit, OLX India).
“At OLX People, we are helping these workers be future-ready by providing them the resources to upskill that will enable them to be more digital-focused. With an advanced matchmaking algorithm and a vast pool of clients, we are also assisting workers find their prospective employers as well as helping clients find the right candidates,” added Tarun Sinha.