eCommerce firms queue-up at top Engg. Institutes

Picture1NEW DELHI : India’s rapidly growing e-commerce companies and startups are planning to recruit aggressively from the top engineering institutes this year as demand for talent soars. Flipkart, Snapdeal, Quikr, Urban Ladder, PepperTap, CultureAlley and others are readying lucrative offers to woo students at IITs, NITs and other institutes.

Flipkart, India’s biggest online retailer, plans to double the headcount of its technology team to 2,400 engineers. Online marketplace Snapdeal is also looking to double the strength of its tech team to about 2,000 this year. About 10% of IIT students had joined such companies last year, according to ET estimates. The proportion may grow substantially this time round, placement teams at some of the IITs said.

Bengaluru-based Flipkart is planning to roll out attractive compensation and benefits for the new campus hires. “We are not limiting ourselves to any fixed number for campus hiring. We are rearing to go and will be aggressive at the tech, B-school and logistics campuses,” said Dalbir Singh, senior director, human resources at Flipkart. “We will attract talent by selling them the opportunity to work with an e-commerce leader that will impact a larger audience.”

Delhi-based Snapdeal plans to visit more campuses this year than it did last time round. “We will rely heavily on the campuses for fresh talent as this will help widen our base of tech team,” said Saurabh Nigam, vice president — HR.

Rajiv Srivatsa, COO and co-founder of Urban Ladder, Bengaluru based curate online furniture seller, said the startup plans to visit campuses earlier this year than it did last time round.
Other startups such as Quikr and CultureAlley are also planning to reach campuses ahead of the others, with new strategies in place to get the best catch. Usually, companies head to the campuses around October every year.

“Technology is where the rubber meets the road and ideas become reality. As technology is so integral to us, this year we will try to be ahead of others in tapping the top campus talent,” said Dhruv Dubey, vice president — HR at Quikr. The Mumbai based online and mobile classifieds portal is organizing hackathons at campuses this year. Also eyeing participation in guest lectures and leadership series sessions.

IITs in Delhi and Mumbai, in particular, are expecting many more e-commerce firms including startups to visit the campuses this year. A student in charge of placement at IIT Bombay said, “The interest level among students to join startups is growing at IIT Bombay and the type of roles and work atmosphere offered by the startups is getting more compelling for students to join.” The student, who did not wish to be identified, said the roles offered by startups to fresh engineers span software, operations, business analysis and marketing.

Online grocer PepperTap’s  CEO Navneet Singh said he is planning to visit campuses himself to pitch for talent on behalf of the company. “I will go to the top IITs and talk about the company and the culture that boosts fun and flexibility,” he said. PepperTap is looking to add about 60 engineers this year.

At the NIT, Tiruchirappalli, startups are evincing greater interest than ever in recruiting students while the students too are looking at such offers favorably, said director Srinivasan Sundarrajan. “Through the alumni and Face book route, the startups are engaging with our students. We see many more students joining the e-commerce space this year. Startups have become the flavour of the season,” he said.

Snapdeal as well as Jaipur-based Culture Alley, which is also sticking to top-tier institutes for fresh talent, are eyeing the summer internship to fill the talent pool. “We are looking to hire summer interns and convert as many as possible into fulltime employees,” said Saurabh Nigam of Snapdeal. Also planning to organize competitions and case study sessions to engage with students before going in for final campus placements. “Our focus is to secure the first slots on campuses to hire top talent,” said Nigam.

Engaging students at an early stage is fast becoming the norm at e-commerce companies. Urban Ladder, like many others, is also set to introduce engagement activities such as live case studies and on-site projects. In addition, Urban Ladder plans to visit a few international campuses this year to attract talent in the design domain. Pepperfry, on the other hand, plans to hire young designers graduating from Indian and overseas institutes. “We are looking both within the country and outside to add to our pool of designers,” said Ashish Shah, COO and founder of the Mumbai-based furniture and home online marketplace.

Source : TOI

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