2 min read.Updated: 11 Jan 2022, 11:48 PM ISTJagadish Shettigar,Pooja Misra
Total employment in 9 sectors in Jul-Sept 2021 was 200,000 higher than that in April-June 2021, according to the Quarterly Employment Survey (QES). The proportion of female workers in the second round at 32.1% was higher than the 29.3% in the first round
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Total employment in 9 sectors in July-September 2021 was 200,000 higher than that in April-June 2021, according to the Quarterly Employment Survey (QES). The proportion of female workers in the second round at 32.1% was higher than the 29.3% in the first round
The QES, collated by the labour bureau, assesses the employment situation in organisations with 10 or more workers in nine sectors of India’s non-farm economy: manufacturing, construction, trade, transport, education, health, accommodation and restaurants, IT/BPO, and financial services. The survey provides information on key characteristics of employment such as gender-wise data, the nature of employment, the number of vacancies, etc. Considering that the nine sectors account for about 85% of the total employment in organisations with 10 or more workers, the sample is quite representative.
What is the survey’s relevance?
Job creation is a by-product and key indicator of economic growth. It is also a measure of how well policy initiatives may have worked or are working. To ensure availability of statistics and high quality data at regular intervals, the government conducts a QES over successive quarters. While the Periodic Labour Force Survey provides information on the supply side of the labour market, the demand side data is covered by the All India Quarterly Establishment-based Employment Survey of which the QES is a part. The two surveys help bridge data gaps around India’s employment situation.
What are the key findings of the second round?
Estimated total employment for July-September 2021 in the nine sectors was 31 million, 200,000 higher than April-June 2021. Manufacturing accounted for 39%, education 22%, and health and IT/BPO for nearly 11% each of the total employment. The number of female workers at 32.1% in the second round of the QES was higher than the 29.3% in the first round.
As much as 37% of the workers were graduates or above, followed by secondary but undergraduates at 30.9%. About 28.4% had reached the level of matric or below. Sector-wise data showed that IT/BPOs accounted for the highest number of graduates or above. This was followed by financial services. In the matric or below category, the highest constituent was manufacturing followed by accommodation and restaurants, and trade. It is heartening to see that 87% of the workers are regular employees.
What challenges do policymakers face?
The biggest challenge is the Omicron variant. Economic growth projections have been lowered from 9.5% to 9.2%, indicating a plausible adverse impact on employment. Measures initiated by states to contain the third wave would be crucial influencing factors. A few states have imposed partial curbs. However, one has to watch for measures relating to high employment oriented activities such as construction.
Jagadish Shettigar and Pooja Misra are faculty members at BIMTECH.
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