Moumita Bakshi Chatterjee

New Delhi, Dec. 5

THE debate over Indian professionals taking over overseas jobs may lose some steam with indications of more and more foreign professionals seeking greener pastures in India.

It is learnt that a small, but growing number of senior foreign executives from Europe and South East Asia are putting their resumes in the headhunter basket for job opportunities beyond IT and BPO, in sectors such as healthcare, hospitality, and logistics.

"In the last six months, we have received close to 500-600 CVs from people who are seeking openings in India. Of this, about 150 are from professionals from Italy, Spain and France, and a chunk from second and third generation Indians and expatriate Indians," Ms Shailja Dutt, Managing Director of Steller Search and Selection Ltd, said.

According to her two to three such resumes come in every day from people keen on being employed here despite the fact that it could lead to shrunken pay packets.

"Even students from business schools across the world are evincing an interest in taking internships with multinationals and domestic companies in India in order to have an experience of a fast developing market," she pointed out.

Interestingly, the attention being generated regarding India is in the same sectors in which the country is witnessing a boom. According to an analyst, there is a need for top-level professionals in areas such as cutting edge Research and Development (R and D) and scientific work. Hence companies in India are looking to fill this vacuum with foreign experts.

"One attends conferences where India and China success stories are narrated. When people see India, they see its economic growth, rising salaries and rising exports. Hence a lot of foreign professionals are now making a beeline to become a part of the boom," said Mr Ravi Bhatia, Managing Director of Gilbert Tweed, which handles senior level placements.

According to him, the popular sectors with job hunters are BPOs, hospitality, aviation, and logistics. "Our Delhi office itself has been receiving 10-12 resumes from senior level professionals overseas who want to work in India. Many of them are Americans who have already worked in South East Asia and hence are well versed with the Asian culture," Mr Bhatia said.

The European nationals queuing up at the search firms are more inclined to work in high-scale design centres, he noted. "People from Italy and Germany are looking at senior management positions in India in this space," he said, adding that many aspirants came with a project management portfolio.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated December 6, 2005)
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