Vipin V. Nair

Kochi, Feb. 6

TEAMLEASE Services Ltd, a company providing temporary staff to corporates, now plans to supply blue-collar employees such as factory workers, as there is growing demand for such a service in India.

"Now we are planning to get into that. The numbers (of blue-collar employees) are huge," said Mr Madhu Damodaran, Senior Vice-President of TeamLease.

The temporary staffing that now takes place in factories are largely unorganised, with local contractors providing workers. TeamLease is targeting this segment with its organised way of placing people.

However, TeamLease is waiting for more relaxation of the country's labour rules before it can embark on providing temporary blue-collar workers, Mr Damodaran said.

Currently, there are some restrictions on allowing temporary employees in core and critical areas of a company's operations, which is determined on a case-to-case basis by the authorities concerned.

TeamLease has sought certain relaxations in the Labour Act, such as issuing a single national licence for temporary staff providers instead of having to take multiple licences when they supply people in different locations, Mr Damodaran said.

Currently, the temporary staffing, or `temping' industry is growing rapidly in India on the back of explosive growth of sectors such as telecom, banking and financial services.

Temporary staffers, or `temps' work less than a year, typically about 4-6 months, in a company before they move to another. They will be on the rolls of the temping service provider.

TeamLease currently has 40,000 people working as temps for its clients. Its gross revenues in the current financial year would be around Rs 275 crore, Mr Damodaran said. (Gross revenue includes the salaries given to temps).

Temping companies such as TeamLease earn their money by charging their clients a premium on the cost-to-company salary of temps. Typically, the margins in the industry are 10-12 per cent.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated February 7, 2006)
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