Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Thursday, Apr 08, 2004
Industry & Economy
It's raining jobs in small towns
Bangalore, April 7
THERE is big action in small towns. And no, this is not a hackneyed India Shining statement. It's not even the BPO factor that's bringing new age jobs to Salem, Madurai, Dharwar, Ludhiana or Jamnagar.
It's the IT, banking, telecom, finance, insurance and FMCGs that are together creating a rural recruitment blitzkrieg. Industry experts say that at any point of time, over a 100 new jobs are beckoning the job seeker in any small town in the country.
According to Ms Nirupama V.G., Executive Vice-President, TeamLease Services (P) Ltd, there's a huge demand for network administrators and data entry operators. "These are for IT companies who are servicing banking or FMCG clients," she explains.
Credit card and finance companies, having suddenly stumbled upon high net worth individuals in places such as Tirunelveli, Indore, Mandya or Ludhiana, are strengthening their sales team in all these locations.
Ms Nirupama says that the main criteria for recruiting sales agents in these industries are integrity, referencability and a minimal aptitude. "The agent's networking skills and ability to talk in the local language are crucial to this job," she says.
Most FMCGs are opting for leasing assignments (contractual employment) in smaller towns because they are testing new waters. They're first checking out if the rural foray will work.
That the BPO industry is cultivating the hinterland for its people resources is well known. Chennai-based recruitment company Ma Foi is opening offices in 29 new locations such as Mangalore, Mysore, Vijayawada, Pondicherry, Cochin, Thiruvananthapuram, Nasik and Nagpur.
Mr K. Pandiarajan, Chairman and Managing Director, Ma Foi, says the company is recruiting about 150-200 people from each of these towns for HSBC alone. "Very soon, we will have offices in all the eight State capitals in the North East."
Mr Kris Lakshmikanth, CEO and Managing Director, Headhunters India (P) Ltd, says that the magnet for employment in the country is taking a different turn. "The trend of people moving from rural areas to bigger cities in search of employment is witnessing a change. Many a times, now you have city-bred professionals taking up assignments in smaller towns." And that's why you have even a Chinese food vendor in Rajapalayam or Salem, he adds.
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