Banks beat IT cos in 2021 job growth, media sees biggest fall

Industries such as banking and financial services and insurance (BFSI), and production and manufacturing showed the highest growth in hiring activity in 2021, while media and construction segments showed the biggest declines, said India in its annual trends analysis.

The BFSI and the manufacturing sectors both saw hiring rise by 31%, while telecom witnessed an increase of 27% during the year.

Hiring in the automotive sector was higher by 25%, while IT Hardware and Software hiring activity was up 23%.

The increase in hiring in the financial sector can be tracked to the trillions of dollars being routed to banks and financial institutions by central banks across the world in the name of stimulating the economy in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis. The cheap supply of money has helped banks not only recruit top talent, but also invest in modernizing and digitizing their operations.

“The growth in BFSI could be accounted for by the Big Data Revolution and integration of digital banking, leading to higher demand for jobs in the sector, while the IT sector has sailed through with technology transformation and growing demand for professionals adept in new-age digital skills.

“Growth in Manufacturing, Telecom, and Automotive industries could be attributed to policy initiatives by the government such as the PLI schemes in Manufacturing, Auto, as well as Telecom reforms”, the India unit of — owned by Quess Corp — said.

While the above industries showed an optimistic outlook for recovery, several sectors such as Media & Entertainment (-15%), Engineering, Cement, Construction, Iron/Steel (-8%), Government/ PSU/ Defence (-7%), Education (-5%), and Advertising, Market Research, Public Relations (-2%) witnessed an annual decline in percentage point growth in 2021.

“Given the hammering impact of the second wave and consecutive lockdowns, the Indian Entertainment industry continues to struggle for revival, along with several others sectors. While these industries have witnessed slight monthly upticks in hiring intent, they have not yet caught up on a year-on-year basis.”, it explained.


Bangalore topped in terms of growth with a 42% jump in hiring in 2021, followed by Chennai (30%), Pune (29%), Hyderabad (24%), and Mumbai (20%).

The performance of Bangalore was boosted by higher demand in both the financial sector and the IT industry, said.

“It is interesting to note that Chennai witnessed an uptick for professionals in Advertising, Market Research, PR, as well as BFSI and Telecom industries. The spike in hiring in metros over the last year could be credited to positive hybrid workforce sentiments, which is bound to be further implemented given the rising Omicron cases in India,” it said.

On the losing side were cities such as Baroda (-15%), Kolkata (-14%), Jaipur (-8%), and Ahmedabad (-5%).

“This could be accounted to the increased adoption of hybrid workforce cultures, demanding employees to be present in Tier-1 cities or central office locations. However, Kochi (2%) saw a slight incline in hiring activity showcasing an optimistic outlook for the current year.”


In 2021, functions such as Senior Management (36%), Software, Hardware, Telecom (30%), HR & Admin (22%), Finance & Accounts (19%), and Hospitality & Travel (12%) saw the highest incline in hiring intent.

“Senior Management positions observed an upsurge in demand due to restructuring of company hierarchies and changes in top leadership, while HR & Admin roles saw an uptick to bridge the demand gap created over the first wave of the pandemic characterized by massive layouts for HR roles. Given the growth in Indian IT, roles in Software, Hardware and Telecom have witnessed an upswing, while HR & Admin functions saw growth with return to office trends.”

On the losing side were roles like customer service (-18%) healthcare (-10%), sales & business development (-9%), marketing & communications (-2%) and engineering and production (-2%).

As for experience levels, Top Management (>15 years) professionals witnessed maximum percentage point growth in 2021 at 55% as there was an increased need for revival of businesses, new policies, and implementation of the same across organizations.

“Leaders were an essential asset to chart courses and help companies adapt, evolve, and transform, and many of these openings are expected to result from the need to replace professionals who have transferred, exited, or retired from the labour force.

“Top management professionals were most in demand for IT, Telecom, and Sales & Business Development. Mid-Senior level (7-10 years) and Intermediate (4-6 years) professionals saw an uptick of 31% and 27% respectively. While Senior level (11-15 years) professions indicated an 18% growth, demand for Entry-level/Freshers (0-3 years) showed 12% percentage growth in the past year,” said.