White collar hiring in India fell 6% in August 2023, the first decline in eight months, as companies adopted a cautious stance amid rising inflation and geopolitical tensions. The decline was led by the IT and auto sectors, which saw hiring fall by 12% and 10%, respectively.
The Naukri JobSpeak Index, which tracks the demand for white collar jobs, showed that there were 2,666 job postings in August, compared to 2,828 job postings in the year-ago period. On a sequential basis, hiring went up by 4% in August 2023, compared to 2,573 job postings in July 2023.
The IT sector was the biggest laggard, with new job creation falling by 33% compared to the high base value in August last year. The auto sector was also hit hard, with hiring falling by 14%.
Other sectors that saw a decline in hiring included healthcare (12%), BPO (10%), and telecom (8%).
The decline in white collar hiring is a sign that the economic recovery in India is slowing down. The rising inflation and geopolitical tensions are also making companies cautious about hiring.
However, there are some sectors that are still hiring aggressively. The financial services sector saw hiring increase by 10% in August, and the consumer discretionary sector saw hiring increase by 8%.
The outlook for white collar hiring in the coming months is uncertain. The economic recovery is still fragile, and the geopolitical tensions could further dampen hiring. However, the strong demand for talent in some sectors could offset the headwinds.
Here are some other factors that could influence white collar hiring in the coming months:
- The pace of economic growth.
- The level of inflation.
- The outcome of the upcoming US midterm elections.
- The progress of the Russia-Ukraine war.
Overall, the outlook for white collar hiring in India in the near term is mixed. There are some positive signs, but there are also some risks that could dampen hiring. Companies are likely to remain cautious in their hiring decisions until the economic outlook becomes clearer.