India is poised to become the third-largest economy in the world. Let that sink in. Behind only the US and China, India is set on a meteoric path of economic development and job sector growth.
The government of India estimates there to be over 100 million people on the cusp of joining the workforce in the next 3 years alone. That’s right, over 100 million new employees are ready to get to work in India’s burgeoning tech industry.
At the same time, India is a largely traditional country. One where finding a job is still most often about who you know and how well you know them. Combine that with a huge discrepancy in technology use between the cities and rural areas, and recruiting on the subcontinent presents a unique set of conundrums.
This combination of high-tech and no-tech means that to craft a successful recruitment marketing campaign here, recruiters need to stay on their toes and know how to mix new school methods with tried-and-true traditional techniques. Keep in mind, social media penetration sits at just 24% for the region. With that in mind, here are our top five picks for recruitment channels in India.
1. Employee Referrals
Yep, topping the list is an old stand by, one that maintains it’s spot at the top of the recruiting hierarchy in many locations around the world, including India. Employee referrals represent a larger segment of found candidates than all of the social media outlets combined in this market, with 21% of new hires coming in via word of mouth.
That means setting up a robust referral incentive program can serve you and your talent acquisition needs well, remember that current employees are the best employer brand representatives you could ask for. When it comes to organically spread your Employer Branding far and wide, these are the people set to carry it with them back to their social circles and extended families. Give them the ammunition they need in the form of talking points about company culture, upcoming openings, and overall EVP.
Set up referral bonuses, and run contests to see who can bring in the most quality hires department by department with relevant prizes for the team that comes out on top. Don’t forget to give these new hires a short questionnaire upon onboarding so you can nail down precisely how they found out about the opening.
Coming in second we have the granddaddy of all social media channels. Facebook will always make our lists of top recruitment channels for one simple reason— with over 2 billion active accounts (that’s nearly ⅓ of the world population) you’ll find your target audience here.
India recently surpassed the US to become the #1 market for Facebook in the world with 21 million active monthly users. That’s a lot of eyeballs seeing your EB posts, interacting with your company presence, and reading about your open positions. Between your current employees using the site, who can get details about current openings to share with their friends, and other passive job seekers who may be looking to move companies; Facebook opens whole new possibilities for spreading your EB and reaching your target candidate where they’re spending their online free time.
No matter where in the world you’re hiring, LinkedIn is your best source for management and C-level candidates. India boasts 59 million active users of the platform, a large enough user base that LinkedIn has begun releasing India-specific tools and features. Things like LinkedIn Lite are making it easier for those with low-bandwidth connections or minimal data plans to still be able to use the service.
Recruitment best practices for LinkedIn in India are pretty much the same as elsewhere with a couple of exceptions. Post your job openings, interact with your followers, and remember to comment on what the thought leaders in your industry are saying. But don’t forget the traditional aspects of Indian culture, so speaking to your robust employee referral program and the aspects of your EVP that cater to those who respect those cultural aspects are great ways to stay relevant with a good cross-section of your target candidates.
The undisputed king of short-form social posts, Twitter sits at 7.7 million active users on the subcontinent. Compared to other regions, a fairly minimal representation, we admit. But remember, social media as a whole is relatively underrepresented in South Asia.
Users on the service here are mostly using it to keep up with their favorite pop culture stars and government officials (the most followed account in the country is the prime minister, Narendra Modi). With that more limited focus it will be up to your social media content team to tailor posts to ensure they resonate with your potential candidates. Posting information, links to job openings, and posts on other platforms such as your blog or Facebook will be your biggest performers.
5. Career Portal
Coming in at #5 is by no means the least important of channels, your on-site career portal. Think of this channel as the backbone of your recruitment marketing efforts since you’ll be directing people to it from every other channel you run campaigns on. Those tweets mentioned above? They should be directing people here. Employee referrals? Where else would you send them but here for details about each available position.
A whopping 20% of new hires in India report starting on the company’s career page, that’s more than all social media outlets combined, just like our #1 entry employee referrals. All this means that focusing significant resources on developing a strong, mobile-friendly career portal is crucial to talent acquisition success in this market. Indian connectivity is heavily weighted toward mobile devices, so making your career pages mobile-first wouldn’t be a bad tactic.
Though banned in India, the rise of TikTok has created a new way for employers to find potential employees. With 40% percent of Gen Z using the app, it's clear that in 2023 this platform will be one of your best options when looking at hiring someone - so get on board now!
The key thing about these videos is that the talent can either show off skills or tell friends what companies are doing well, while companies can run different challenges for recruiting and boosting their employer brand. TikTok
All told, successful recruitment in India is a matter of finding the right blend of old-school and new technology for your company and your target candidates. If you’re recruiting in the big cities, you can safely assume mobile connectivity, while if you’re focused in more rural, you might want to focus more on referral networks and word of mouth.
When you find the combination that works for you, you’ll be rewarded with a sizable talent pool to draw from, including some of the most talented tech workers in the world.