Recruiters flocked premier undergraduate colleges to woo fresh talent, despite a slowdown.
MUMBAI: Job offers poured in at the country’s leading undergraduate colleges from old and first-time recruiters with average salaries increasing up to 45%, despite a slowdown in the local economy and job market. Recruiters flocked institutions such as Lady Shri Ram College (LSR), Shri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) and St Stephen’s College in Delhi; and Loyola College in Chennai to woo fresh talent. Average salaries at LSR and SRCC increased to about Rs 10 lakh from about Rs 7.5 lakh per annum last year. At Loyola, the average salaries were around Rs 6.23 lakh a year compared with Rs 4.25 lakh last year. A final-year commerce student at LSR has bagged a salary offer of Rs 30 lakh for an entry-level role in India with a consulting company, while another commerce student at SRCC got an offer of Rs 31 lakh from EY-Parthenon. LEK Consulting made an offer of Rs 29.3 lakh to another student at the same institution. At Loyola, the highest offer was Rs 10.25 lakh by Federal Bank, a first-timer on its campus this year. Comparatively, the average pay for freshersat the leading Indian Institutes of Management at Ahmedabad, Bengaluru and Kolkata ranges from Rs 20 lakh to Rs 28 lakh per annum. At newer IIMs, it is between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 20 lakh. “We haven't seen an overall impact of the (economic) slowdown in placements,” said Kanika K Ahuja, an associate professor at the department of psychology and the placement in-charge at Lady Shri Ram College for Women. “The number of companies coming has more or less remained the same since last year, however the number of students that were made an offer to have increased,” she said, adding that there were companies that were expanding business and needed more talent. The placement season for colleges mostly commences around July-August and ends between March and May. Top recruiters included Gartner, Accenture, Samsung, Marico, PwC, Red-Seer Consulting, GEP Consulting, Deloitte USI, EY Global Delivery Services, Bain Capability Network and JPMorgan & Chase, among others. “Apart from the increase in the interest of top-tier firms in hiring talent from SRCC, the number of firms conducting a pooled campus drive between top undergraduate colleges of DU (Delhi University), namely SRCC, LSR and Stephens has increased,” said Vikram Nanda, the placement cell chief secretary at SRCC, which saw a host of first-time recruiters including Gartner, American Express, InMobi, Marico, RedSeer Consulting, among others. The last couple of years had seen an increasing trend of companies extending the search for talent beyond Bschools and IITs, as they have started accepting graduate colleges as a good source that can give them a diverse pool of talent coming from backgrounds such as economics, commerce, statistics and mathematics.