Source: Times of India, Dec 20, 2016
NEW DELHI: As some industries brace for slow hiring in the coming months, the Indian pharmaceutical sector‘s recruitment numbers are poised to continue growing in double digits next year as healthawareness improves and lifespans increase.
Drugmakers Novartis and Biocon and hospital chains Apollo Hospitals and Fortis Healthcare say the sector will see a surge in hiring across positions in areas such as diagnostics and administration, compounded by a growth in lifestyle and other non-communicable diseases.
Industry experts said with the increasing growth potential of the pharma sector, about 10% increase in jobs can be expected in the next year. According to placement company TeamLease Services, the planned goods and services tax regime will result in double-digit job creation in pharma, with a prevailing job growth rate of 14%. “With the positive outlook of the sector, there will be an increase in frontline sales and middle-management positions in medical and marketing functions in the industry,” said Sanjay Srivastava, director of HR at Boehringer Ingelheim India.
The growing collaboration between Indian and global pharma companies will help leverage innovation and scale, resulting in better use of human resources and reduced risk of layoffs, he added.
Apollo Hospitals Enterprise will require specialist talent in medical care, including doctors, nursing staff and allied health professionals. In the next two to three years, it plans to add close to 20,000 employees to its existing 70,000 staff strength, said Jacob Jacob, Apollo’s chief people officer.
Swiss drugmaker Novartis said there is likely to be a surge in hiring during the first half of 2017 as pharma organisations seek to consolidate and address pipeline needs.
There will be demand for personnel in areas such as market access, patient support and key account management, where the talent pool is limited. India will need to maintain its economic attractiveness for the virtuous cycle of employment to continue at Novartis. “The influx of cross-industry talent into a sector that is highly incestuous is critical to its success,” Savitha Shivsankar, country head, HR, Novartis India, told ET. For biopharmaceutical company Biocon, hiring at the senior-most levels will pertain to department heads. Many such positions are filled from within and a few are hired from outside. Amitava Saha, Biocon’s senior vice-president and head, HR, said production and quality jobs will see an increase as the company expands its capacity over the next couple of years.Srivastava of Boehringer Ingelheim India added that there is strong demand for medicine and other health products in India, which has helped the industry grow. Companies see this as an opportunity and have expanded their business in India, leading to an increase in creation of jobs in functions such as sales and marketing. The Indian pharmaceutical market expanded to $36.7 billion in 2016 from $6 billion in 2005 and is expected to reach $55 billion by 2020, according to India Brand Equity Foundation.
Fortis Healthcare will need senior leaders in the clinical and non-clinical space in the coming months. Bhavdeep Singh, chief executive officer of Fortis Healthcare, told ET that India faces a shortage of able specialists in the areas of surgery, gynaecology and paediatrics.
Healthcare workers will remain in demand in India, given the limited availability of medical staff here—there are only seven doctors and 17.1nurses for every 10,000 patients here against a global average of 13.9 and 28.6, respectively, said Jacob of Apollo.