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New Delhi: The national career service (NCS), designed to be a government platform for job seekers, may soon become a de facto private-public partnership.

The labour ministry is ready with a plan to co-opt private job portals such as naukri.com and monster.com to support the NCS, launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 20 July.

The ministry believes that instead of competing with private portals, the NCS should collaborate with them to link potential employers and employees, two government officials said on condition of anonymity.

“There is no point competing. We have to evolve a model which is sustainable," said one of the two officials.

Job seekers will be brought to the NCS by the labour ministry, and it will be up to the private job portals to link them to potential employers.

NCS had 20 million job seekers on its platform before 20 July and in the last 12 days, the count has gone up by 250,000.

The first official said the online recruitment market was ready to leapfrog, but the government is not looking to make money out of the initiative.

“We will give free access to private players to our database and take their help in improving service," the official said.

The second official said that in the next two weeks, the labour ministry would be holding a series of meetings with industries and job portals.

Since the government will bring trained workers to the platform, both companies and recruitment platforms would be interested in the NCS, he said.

“The government’s aim is to link more people with jobs and it will do everything to achieve it," said the second official.

“If that entails private-partnership, then yes we are for it. We know without enough jobs, this platform will not be successful," the official added.

In the last 12 days, NCS has already attracted 43 placement agencies, the official said.

“Government is trying to become the market place and we see absolute merit in it. There are several areas where we can collaborate," said Sanjay Modi, managing director, Monster India. Monster.com can offer job feeds to the NCS, which means those enrolled on the portal can apply for jobs available on its website.

Shine.com, the jobs portal run by Mint’s publisher HT Media Ltd, would be happy to collaborate with the government in connecting job seekers to jobs, said Amit Garg, executive director, digital initiatives. A collaborative approach will boost the prospects of NCS, he said.

“I think, they are very clear about the private-public partnership model. As a leading staffing company, if we can take 10,000 jobs to NCS in next couple of years it will be a great achievement," said Pankaj Bansal, chief executive of staffing company PeopleStrong.

PeopleStrong is helping the government in establishing three model career centres (next generation employment exchanges) in Gurgaon, Mumbai and Chennai.

The online recruitment space is in its infancy in India, worth 700-800 crore a year, said Tarun Matta, founder of iimjobs.com, another jobs wesbsite.

Matta expects more competition and faster growth over the years.

Working with the government can be “hard", given that the government has a proprietary interest in the candidates, he explained.

“Candidates will come where they see value," Matta said.

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