Executives at head hunters Egon Zender, Heidrick & Struggles, Randstad and Vito India are suddenly on their toes in a dull hiring market as bank license aspirants such as RIL, L&T Finance Holdings, Religare, and the Aditya Birla Group throng them to snatch the industry’s talent cream.
Banking experts at these hiring companies are burning midnight oil to identify candidates, from prospective chief executives to compliance officers, to compile a list that would impress the regulator and brighten applicants’ chances. Different headhunting firms are advising clients on their different talent needs and no mandates have been awarded yet. “The new applicants are looking at hiring people with credible track record and who can build a strong operating model and who have a strong corporate, rural, retail and SME banking background,” says Puneet Singh, partner, financial services and head-North India at global executive search firm Heidrick and Struggles. Singh’s organisation is advising some of the prospective top applicants on their talent needs.
They are likely to short list candidates from many banks including HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, notwithstanding the sting operation, and Citigroup and State Bank of India. The candidates will be picked not just based on their years of experience, but will also need to have achieved success in building profitable businesses without compromising regulatory guidelines.
“They are interested in top guys from consulting firms who are into the banking and financial services sector, banks and financial services institutions,” says Aditya Narayan Mishra, president, India unit at the Dutch head-hunter Randstad Holding NV. There is a new buoyancy in the employment market and the Indian business community with the RBI spelling out guidelines for new bank licenses, ending a decade of false starts. Former Infosys chief financial officer Mohandas Pai, and L & T have thrown their hats into the ring. “It has been a long-held dream to start a bank,” said micro financier Ramesh Ramanathan, who plans to partner Pai in seeking a license. “The clock started to tick when the final guidelines came out.” Some of the publicly known aspirants for the new banking licences include Aditya Birla Financial Services, Reliance Industries, Reliance Capital, Shriram Transport, Piramal Enterprises, Mahindra Financial Services, Bajaj Finserv, L&T Finance, Tata Capital, Religare, Cholamandalam Finance, Edelweiss, Videocon and IDFC.
The financial services sector, which has been at the receiving end of the Indian slowdown, is seeing some recovery. Staffing company Manpower’s Employment Outlook Survey showed a 19 percentage point slump in companies that plan to hire in the second quarter of 2013 to 27%, down from 45% a year ago. State-run banks are hiring more than 55,000 candidates in the next few months. In fact, the employment market has been so bad that there were more than 17 lakh applications for just about 1,500 officer jobs at the State Bank of India. Even among the new banks, nonbanking finance companies such as L & T Finance and Shriram City Union, may be better placed with a substantial staff familiar with credit operations.
Source: Times of India