'Hiring landscape is constantly evolving'

Professional-Service Diverse work culture and diversity hiring will be key game changers (Representational image)

As a growing economy, the country is seeing steady job creation across the board

Sandeep-Kohli-EY-HJ16 Sandeep Kohli, National Director, Human Resources, Ernst & Young

In today’s volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world, the hiring landscape is constantly evolving as organisations compete to recruit and retain the best talent. Some factors that I believe will drive the recruitment processes for the year 2016 are the increasing use of social, digital and mobile applications; enhanced focus on diversity hiring; tapping passive talent and targeting campus hires with entrepreneurial abilities.

Social networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are non-conventional, but effective methods of sourcing talent. The internet and social media have made it much easier for recruiters to find and research potential candidates—especially elusive talent that may not be actively looking for a job. Even though this trend of using online social networks for hiring started a few years ago, the role of technology is more crucial than before and therefore, the reliance on social media to source talent is on the upswing and will continue in the times to come.

As workplaces become more global and organisations increasingly realise how imperative a diverse work culture is, diversity hiring will prove to be a key game changer for 2016. In fact, at EY, diversity and inclusiveness are considered vital in today’s interconnected world where clients expect to be served by a truly global firm, bringing the relevant mix of perspectives and skills. They also expect us to lead inclusively to take advantage of the diversity within our teams and organisation to bring in different viewpoints. Therefore, we draw on strengths of everyone in our global organisations and capitalise on their difference.


There is a noticeably steep rise in the number of PIOs (person of Indian origin) returning to the country, owing to a change in the political and economic scenario overseas. This rich talent pool comprises of both working professionals and students with foreign degrees, who after gaining global exposure and experience are returning to the country. Tapping into PIOs is another trend that is fast bringing about a paradigm shift in the job market.

Lastly, Gen Z is embracing the ‘Make in India’ mind-set whole heartedly, as the interest in entrepreneurial ventures is on the rise. College graduates are now more focused on the growth and work opportunities a company presents in addition to the brand name. There is a lot of interest and keenness towards joining start-ups and organisations that have a young and vibrant culture that is seen as an incubator for entrepreneurship.

As a growing economy, the country is seeing steady job creation across the board, though in broad terms the hot jobs in the management consulting industry lie primarily in the following areas:

•Business Intelligence/Analytics—Data management is at the forefront of IT. And as the need to analyse the pool of data increases, organisations are on a lookout for professionals who can assist in tapping the power of Big Data.

•Digital—this is an upcoming space, especially for the leaders in professional services. There is a need to hire professionals who not only deliver on the project owing to their expertise but also bring in business through their network.

•Smart Cities—Government of India’s vision of developing 100 smart cities as satellite towns of larger cities and by modernising the existing mid-sized cities. This evolving sector is another focus area for professional service providers.

•Cyber/Info security—Cyber experts are a coveted group of professionals, especially now when social media, e-commerce, e-banking and e-governance have been established in the online space. There is thus, a greater need for cyber security professionals to support this expanding internet economy.

In addition to job-specific skills, I believe that in today’s dynamic professional environment, in order to stay ahead of the curve, one needs to have learning agility, imbibe inclusiveness and be innovative. Employees need to be able to demonstrate learning agility by proactively developing new capabilities and learning and unlearning with equal rigour. Also, with organisations increasingly becoming globally integrated, employees should be able to embrace diversity of thought and perspectives—they need to be able to collaborate, capitalise on differences, and work effectively with people who are different from them. Lastly, to survive in this ever evolving job scenario, people must be able to innovate on an ongoing basis. They need to have the vision to try something different, offer fresh insights and challenge status quo to create value.

With an increasingly dynamic and challenging business environment, business paradigms are becoming obsolete by the hour. The year 2016 will only see more of it. Professionals who demonstrate learning agility, are open to new ideas and experiences and are ready to learn and unlearn will be the game changers. This year will be the year of globalisation and changing workforce demographics, innovation, enhanced entrepreneurial activity and driving a strategic focus on building a robust gender balance leadership pipeline.

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