New Delhi: Nasscom, the lobby group of India’s software and back office services industry, has asked its members not to disrupt the academic session in engineering colleges by hiring students early, a move recruitment specialists predicted may not gain much traction.
The National Association of Software and Service Companies, better known as Nasscom, has said hiring graduating students closer to when they are ready to graduate will allow companies to plan their manpower needs better in the uncertain climate of an economic slowdown such as the current one.
Companies in India’s nearly Rs2 trillion software and back office services industry, typically, hire students from the country’s thousands of engineering colleges from the sixth semester—sometimes as early as the fifth semester—in an eight-semester course.
“...companies have to make an estimate of their requirements almost 18-24 months prior to their need. This worked well in the past with some degree of certainty of growth, but is increasingly difficult during the current economic environment,” Nasscom president Som Mittal said in an email to member companies sent by him early afternoon on Friday. He confirmed the contents of the mail for Mint late evening, adding he had written to colleges too.
“In many cases, it has led to joining dates of students getting staggered and deferred, which benefits neither the company nor the student.”
Hundreds of students hired like this across India are being asked to defer joining dates.
Rishi Das, chief executive of CareerNet Consulting, a firm that helps 50 technology firms with on-campus hiring from 400 colleges, said of the engineering batches graduating this year: “Typically about 30-40% of whatever is offered on campus is getting delayed or dropped.” Half of these offers were made between January and June 2008, he said.
Other hiring experts said Nasscom could only play an advisory role in individual companies’ hiring decisions.
“I don’t know if it’s an attempt to clear the backlog (in engineering schools). If you don’t clear the 2008-09 batch, what is the point of making offers to the 2010-11 batch”, said E. Balaji, chief executive of Ma Foi Management Consultants, a staffing company which counts 15% to 18% of hires it places in the information technology sector.
Balaji said recruitment ultimately is a decision that every company takes individually.
“They will give a hearing to Nasscom. But final decision will be taken by individual companies,” he said.