India tops a list of nations likely to keep a steady pace of hiring in the April-June quarter of 2009 with one in every four Indian companies surveyed saying it plans to recruit.
South Africa came second in the 33-country study that featured 3,600 Indian companies and 72,000 employers worldwide, according to HR consulting firm Manpower.
The survey's benchmark net employment outlook (NEO) for India improved from 19% in the previous quarter to 25% in April-June, said the firm's India MD Naresh Malhan. NEO is arrived at subtracting the percentage of employers expecting to see a decrease in employment at their location in the next quarter from those anticipating total employment to increase.
India had registered a NEO of 42% for Q2 2008, which has now dipped to 25%, indicating the impact of the global slowdown. The relatively slow pace of hiring in the second quarter can be attributed to the employers' focus on maintaining their workforce at current levels. Also, hiring intentions across all industry sectors have softened, as organisations review their requirements at the beginning of the fiscal year," Mr Malhan said.
Employers in all the seven industry sectors surveyed said they expected the headcount to grow in the next quarter. The services sector was the most optimistic with a strong net outlook of 29%.
Sectors such as transportation & utilities, (23%) manufacturing (22%), public administration & education (22%), insurance, finance and real estate (21%) are all likely to see robust hiring in the next quarter.
Also, employers in all four regions across the country predict a strong labour market for April-June, 2009. "The most optimistic forecast is from the eastern region, where the net employment outlook stands at 27%, followed by south, west and north at 24%, 23% and 22%, respectively," the survey said.
South Africa had a NEO of 14% while China registered 4%, and the US just 1%.