Bangalore: About a dozen potential recruiters, including global consulting and financial services firms, turned up at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore (IIM-B) on Day Zero, the first day of final placements for the 260-strong class of 2010.
The school expects to close placements in a week’s time against the 10 days taken last year, when the recruiting season at India’s B-schools was stretched and salary offers dropped in the aftermath of the global financial crisis that forced many companies to freeze or slow hiring.
India’s accelerating economic growth and the emergence of the US from recession is seen to have brightened the outlook for placements this year.
“Students have had a much better year this year,” said Jai Sinha, partner at consultancy Booz and Co., who made one offer at IIM-B on Thursday. “Last year placements happened when people were most pessimistic.”
Consultancies including Bain and Co., McKinsey and Co., and AT Kearney Inc., banks such as Bank of America-Merrill Lynch and brokerage houses Nomura Securities and Kotak Securities visited IIM-B on Thursday.
Still, the number of banks visiting the campus on Thursday was much like last year and fewer than previous years, said Ravi Srivastava, partner at Boston Consulting Group, who made five offers on Day Zero, apart from four pre-placement offers.
Students and faculty at IIM-B declined to talk to the media until the end of the placement process.
At IIM Ahmedabad (IIM-A), India’s most prestigious B-school, three clusters of recruiters have visited the campus as part of a spread-out placement process that started on 13 February.
In the first cluster, three banks, six consultancies and a couple of private equity firms recruited students. The school has not released any consolidated numbers so far—of offers made or the direction in which salaries are moving. In the second cluster, TAS, formerly known as the Tata Administrative Service, made offers to six students.
“Last year we hired 40, which include in-house applicants. That was the largest ever TAS batch recruited,” said Rahul Krishna, head of TAS, which grooms managers for the Tata group.
TAS said it already has 22 hires from schools, including Delhi’s Faculty of Management Studies and Mumbai’s S.P. Jain Institute of Management, and might hit the same number as last year.
IIM Calcutta (IIM-C), which will start its placement process on 6 March, has confirmed participation by over 100 companies, up 20% from last year. “As such, I am confident that placements would be much better than last year,” said Prafulla Agnihotri, chairman of placements at IIM-C.
As the world battled the financial crisis last year, IIMs reached out to several first-time recruiters, including startups and public sector undertakings (PSUs).
Aveek Datta in Kolkata contributed to this story.