Economic Times


Students choosier during tough times

Our Bureau

The lower intake in campus recruitment in 2008 would lead one to believe that students would temper expectations and grab the first offer letter they get. Ironically, the demands have become more region and discipline specific, according to early data from a survey by HR Services firm AssessPeople.

The survey, conducted during the September – October 2008 period, among 5300 students, is proof that companies would have to work overtime to woo employees in tough times. “Sourcing talent does not become easier in the current environment because companies are always competing for good talent. So, future work force expectations will be kept in mind”, said Mr R Kannan, CEO, AssessPeople.

In terms of company profile, students in Tier – I engineering colleges closely look at the management profile, management graduates of premier institutes value the learning culture but for non-engineering students, job security and industry type are more important than compensation. “Non – engineering students always face the threat of being replaced by an engineering or a management graduate. So, they are willing to settle for a lower compensation in return for job security,” said Dr Arup Varma, director, AssessPeople.

Demography-wise, while students in the northern and southern part of India stress on a company’s image, company management is important for students in eastern India and compensation is key for students form the West. The preferred work locations include Bangalore, the National Capital Region and Mumbai and the popular industry segments are telecom, IT and financial services.

Even the preferred mode of assessment is different for students from various regions. “It’s a cultural issue that recruiters need to take note of. South India prefers aptitude and personality tests. East prefers group discussions, North and West prefer tests on subject knowledge,” Mr Varma added. Irrespective of region or college, 80% of students prefer being assessed online, an indicator of the high levels of internet penetration among these students.