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India’s evolving job market: Hits and Misses

Viswanath Pudukkod, (MD & CEO) Randstad India Pvt. ltd.

Corporate Member , Indian Staffing Federation


As a leader in the world’s largest talent company, India’s evolving job market excites me tremendously. Over the years, we have seen a huge transformation in India’s employment scenario. Opening up of the Indian economy across sectors, emphasis on indigenous manufacturing, increase in capital expenditure, conducive policy framework towards ease of doing business have brought in new job opportunities.

With about 3,00,000 jobs created under the PLI scheme, and opportunities for 6,00,000+ expected from the recently launched National Green Hydrogen Mission, I find it heartening that employment continues to be a high priority for the government. And their supportive policies for the emerging sectors— semiconductors, AI, medtech and electric vehicles — will boost this further. Even more encouraging is how the government is enhancing the ease of doing business by consolidating 44 labor laws into 4 labor codes.

India Inc., too, is scoring hits by hiring in large numbers in Tier 2 cities, especially at the fresher and junior levels. Their willingness to hire for niche skills from these locations augurs extremely well for job growth and rise in living standards.

It is also very important to note that talent is gradually becoming scarce, especially with several countries dealing with an aging population. In that context, the demographics in India reflect a large and young working population that is set to dominate the job market, which is a very bright prospect for the Indian employment landscape.

Yet, there is much more to be done.

Even with the sharp focus on skilling, half of India’s youth still needs to be made employable. Plus, we cannot take pride in producing the largest number of female STEM graduates, if we rank 19th in employing them. The government must provide a more enabling framework, and the private sector must step up with better skilling initiatives, and partner better with academia to address these gaps.

And then, we have our hugely growing gig workforce, expected to touch ~23.5 million by 2029-30.With such a huge workforce entering the gig workforce, we must have better structured policies and clarity on regulations for gig workers.

Turnover rates are forecasted to be high in 2023. Organizations must make culture, purpose, environment-consciousness, and employee experience as brand motivators to attract and retain talent.

A recent CII report predicts that India could leapfrog its GDP to USD 9 trillion by 2030 and $40 trillion by 2047, if we created productive employment for our young talent force. We have miles to go, but I am optimistic that we will keep our promises.

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