Top Indian Recruiters: Hiring for start-ups is probably much easier today, says redBus recruitment head

rupali-sharmaWith the present government’s focus on ‘Make In India’, start-ups are here to stay and it is very good for the economy at large. At the same time, it is definitely keeping the HR function and the reporting managers on their toes because it brings with it a lot of opportunities for everybody.

Today, youngsters want their slice of the start-up pie, either by being part of an early stage start-up or by starting up on their own (sometimes they spend time in a start-up to learn the trick of the trade). Hiring for start-ups today is probably much easier than it used to be.

Back then, one needed to sell the company and the concept of start-ups. Families always wanted a “Safe & Secure” job and that would mean top companies in the country or abroad. Start-ups were not considered safe because a lot of times, employees had to take a pay cut, something unheard of back then. Today, the younger generation is clear on what they want to do and they have no qualms of taking a pay cut if the role is challenging enough. At the same time, today’s start-up jobs also pay well; so it is a win-win situation for everybody.


The entry of a large numbers of start-ups has made significant changes to the overall hiring dynamics in Indian markets, especially in cities where start-ups are concentrated viz. Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi etc. A few of the most staggering trends are as follows:

  • Most e-Commerce startups came with a significant amount of funding. They need to show a strong team on-board to attract the next batch of investors and also to attract strong candidates to move from existing stable roles to a start-up environment meant “going all out” in terms of making the job offers “attractive”. Hence, salaries being offered to candidates went up many fold, creating a mad rush in the market where candidates were seen moving from one start-up to another purely due to compensation. While this trend has started streamlining with many start-ups closing business, salaries provided by e-Commerce companies continue to be 20-30 percentile higher that offered in the services sector and 15-20 percent higher than other product environment.

  • Another positive change has been higher use of social media and technology especially among start-ups and e-Commerce firms and this trend will continue in the next few years and will be and has been imbibed by companies from other sectors too. Start-ups and e-Commerce firms made an increasing amount of use of technology such as video interviews, online assessments tools etc. resulting in speeding up the interview process and improving the quality of hire.

Lastly, most start-ups are focusing on hiring technology and business folks to strengthen the core team. In most cases, these companies do not have an in-house hiring team which resulted in the staffing effort being outsourced to hiring agencies. This has further resulted in the mushrooming of many sourcing agencies catering to hiring for e-Commerce companies only. 

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