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Social services sector hires most in 2011

Piyali Mandal  |  New Delhi 

Hiring activities in the non-governmental organisation (NGO) sector have increased over 60 per cent in 2011 compared to 2010, even as they have come under the government scanner for pushing alien agendas in the country.

Overall hiring activities in the social sector, which includes NGOs, sustainability arm of big corporates and micro finance companies, increased by 30-40 per cent in 2011. The addition of manpower in the sector happened, even as the overall hiring activities in some of the corporate verticals like transport, media and government had gone down last year.

The Monster Employment Index India said that 21 of the 27 sectors that it monitors had registered expansion in recruitment activity between January 2011 and January 2012 by only 6 per cent. Of all the sectors, NGOs/social services sector hiring exhibited the highest annual growth, according to the data from job search firm Monster India.

A dipstick survey of around 1,000 firms, including non-profit organisations, by MyHiringClub, shows that the sector had added 11,459 workers in 2011, compared to 6,459 in 2010. In case of NGOs, MFIs and other non-profit organisations, hiring in 2011 was 4,984 compared to 2,968 in 2010.

“It has been observed that hiring in social sector is an ongoing process as the sector (to a large extent) is not affected by Sensex movements, unlike other sectors. The main aim of firms in this sector is not to make profits but to deploy funds in the right places and projects. During the beginning of the year, funds are allocated to social firms which they have to deploy in defined time lines. For example, two years, three years or five years, and hence the immediate variations in the economy do not have instant adverse affect on hiring in the social sector,” Sunil Goel, director of executive search firm, Globalhunt, said.

The corporate responsibility initiatives of have also triggered social sector hiring. For instance, in the Vedanta Group, the number of employees working on community programmes has increased by around 12 per cent from 2010 till now. The increase from 2005 till the current year is close to 70 per cent.

“The Vedanta Group has been involved in various community initiatives for several years now. We continue to add more projects and geographies and have therefore been hiring people who are trained in community development, environment, health and sustainability. We work very closely with over 160 partner organisations, including 82 NGOs,” a Vedanta spokesperson said.

Even for like auto giant, Maruti, and beer maker, SabMiller, which have very small corporate social responsibility (CSR) teams, the tie-ups with NGOs and other social activities have gone up considerably. Other firms, which have ramped up hiring in 2011 include Janalaxmi Financial Services (MFI), Sahayata MFI, CRY, Smile Foundation, Tata Steel (CSR Division), Hindalco (CSR Division) and Hindustan Zinc (CSR Division) among others.

“A higher number of are hiring social sector professionals, thanks to increased corporate philanthropy, higher CSR activities, focus on rural consumers and more partnerships with government. There has been an average increase of 30 to 40 per cent every year in social sector hiring activity. Hiring in social sector is mostly in tier II and III cities. This year also we are expecting a 25 per cent increase in hiring activity in this sector,” Rajesh Kumar, CEO, and said.

First Published: Thu, March 01 2012. 00:04 IST