More blue-collar jobs to be won as the economy opens up

India’s blue-collar and gray-collar labor markets recorded their strongest growth in February in more than a year as lower Covid infection numbers, lifting of restrictions and a pick-up in economic activity led to an increased demand for labour.

Data from QJobs, an online jobs platform part of recruitment services company Quess Corp, shows that February saw more than one million active job postings for blue-collar workers. These included 800,000 new jobs, the most new jobs posted in a month in more than a year, data exclusively shared with ET shows.

This is gaining importance at a time when agencies are reopening their offices, educational institutions are preparing to welcome students back and service activities are resuming amid the decline of the third wave of the pandemic.

“The outlook for blue/grey collar jobs is quite robust with growth in new clients posting jobs and existing clients increasing job postings,” said Sekhar Garisa, Head of Emerging Business and Business Development. companies at Quess Corp. “Overall, almost all of the organization will expand. Companies that had postponed their expansion plan have restarted them. Offices are opening and in all sectors, services are restarting. This, coupled with increasing attrition , leads to an increase in demand,” he added. “A wave of investment in startups and technology-driven companies is also contributing significantly to the creation of new jobs,” he added. added.

The top categories seeing the highest demand are Delivery & Driver, Data Entry/Back Office, BPO/Customer Service, Field Sales, Business Development, and Retail/Counter Sales .

Data shows that the emerging categories where demand is growing are security guards and administrators, which saw a 350% growth in January-February compared to the previous three months, and housekeeping and HR, which grew by 250%.

“Opening up the services business amid falling infection numbers, rapid removal of restrictions and relatively strong corporate and bank balance sheets will continue to bolster businesses’ ability to hire,” said Sachchidanand Shukla, chief economist of the Mahindra Group. Growing attrition is also an indicator of increasing job opportunities, he added.

Labor market experts said the emphasis on capital investment and job creation incentives in the recent union budget would further accelerate job creation in the blue-collar segment.

The push towards manufacturing through various production-related incentive programs and emphasis on infrastructure development will also lead to the creation of more jobs, Shukla said.

Sodexo, one of the largest providers of foodservice and facilities management and technical services, added more businesses this year and existing clients expanded the scope of work as part of office openings and educational institutions. “We have both new mandates and expansion of services with existing clients in all sectors, which has led to an increase in the hiring of employees,” said Pradeep Chavda, Director – HR – India at Sodexo . “Integrated facilities management is on the radar for most organizations as employee health and wellbeing has taken center stage and employers want to use it as an advantage to retain talent at the workplace. current era of high employee attrition,” he added.

Logistics solutions provider Ecom Express, which last year hired about 17,000 couriers, including on-demand workers, plans to hire nearly 30,000 this year. “Our hiring will be across the country, and we are seeing massive uptake from Tier III/IV cities and remote areas of the country,” HR Director Saurabh Deep Singla said.

TN Hari, Human Resources Manager at BigBasket, said, “For us, business has increased with continued demand for online shopping and we will continue to hire more people, including those at the blue-collar level.”

Elizabeth J. Harless