Mumbai: A mood of caution will prevail on hiring front over the next six months as recruitment in some sectors is off-set by headcount freeze or retrenchment in others, according to a survey by a job search portal.
"A mood of caution amongst employers sets the tone for recruitment in the coming six months with hiring in some industries being offset by a headcount freeze or even retrenchment in others," HeadHonchos.Com has said.
The outlook is even more subdued in the case of senior positions, raising concerns around investment in greenfield projects and future growth plans of India Inc, it said in 'Management Hiring Perspective Report 2012' released on Tuesday.
Of the 51 percent 'optimist employers' - those who anticipate an increase in head count in their organisations - 87 percent expect to grow the total employee strength by 6-20 percent, the report said.
However these gains are offset to an extent by stagnant headcount or active downsizing in the remaining 49 percent of employers.
Against an overall projected increase in headcount of 5-5.5 percent across all levels, a weak 2 percent growth is expected at senior levels.
Prospects for mid-management hiring also look bleak, with a mere 3.4 percent projected increase in headcount.
This trend is corroborated by mid-management and senior professionals across the country, based on ground realities in their industries.
As per the survey, an equivalent 51 percent of professionals foresee active hiring in their organisations, with 38 percent expecting stagnant headcounts.
Interestingly, the report said only 11 percent of professionals surveyed expect downsizing in their organisation as opposed to 26 percent of employers.
Speaking about the findings, HeadHonchos.Com CEO Uday Sodhi said, "Weaker hiring plans for mid-management and senior positions signal a cautious approach amongst corporates, especially when supported by the opinion of professionals. An interesting development as we ride out the economic cycle, is a proactive approach by corporates and senior professionals to effectively counter the environment."
He said HeadHonchos.Com is closely watching the hiring trends and sentiments in this crucial segment as they reflect business confidence and map the intent of corporate India.
About 28 percent of senior telecom professionals believe there will be downsizing in the industry, indicating hard times ahead.
Other industries in which professionals could witness downsizing are - entertainment and media (19 percent), BFSI (15 percent) and real estate (13 percent).
Professionals from the pharma and FMCG industries have strong confidence in their respective industries, with majority of them expecting positive growth in these sectors.
Compared to the larger metros, professionals in the smaller towns as well as Kolkata are more bullish on industry hiring and growth rates.
About 58 percent of respondents in the tier II and tier III cities expect active hiring as compared to 51 percent across India and 49 percent in the three cities of Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru, according to the survey.
This could be attributed to higher degree of insulation from corporate offices, which are more likely to be located in the metros, it said.
First Published: Tuesday, October 30, 2012, 20:41