A spectacular initial burst — at least 15-20% more jobs, 10-20% higher average salaries and 30% increase in global offers — set the pace for this year's placement season at Indian Institutes of Technology which kicked off on Monday. Sources from eight campuses that ET spoke to said hiring and salaries will shoot up this year, after a relatively slow 3-4 years.
In the first twenty hours, online social networking giant Facebook ruled the roost with a Rs 1.55 crore ($250,000) salary offer including bonus and Esops for a US posting. This is the probably the highest ever offer across IITs in recent years.
Facebook made the offer for software engineer profiles based out of California to three students at IIT Kharagpur and to an unknown number at IIT Bombay, sources at the two institutes revealed. The company did not respond to an email sent by Overall, big-ticket offers were back with a bang as other top paymasters, according to campus sources, included Samsung $150,000 (Rs 93 lakh), Microsoft $129,000 (Rs 80 lakh), Oracle $125,000 plus Esops (Rs 78 lakh plus Esops), Google $125,000 (Rs 78 lakh) and Visa $140,000 (Rs 87 lakh).
At IIT-BHU, Varanasi, the top package from a multinational was Rs 77.5 lakh ($100,000 base salary, $15,000 sign-on bonus and $10,000 relocation and stock options), an over 19% jump over the top offer last year. At IIT-Kanpur, it went up over 36% from $110,000 last year to $150,000 this time.
"If this momentum continues, we will place 1,200 students in the first 20 days compared to 1,000 last year," a placement team member of IIT-Kharagpur said.
Across campuses, international offers saw a boom compared to last year. Oracle, for instance, said that it is hiring for 15 overseas roles this year, compared to 13 last time. Students will join the American multinational computer technology corporation in product development roles across its hardware, software or industry — specific based groups. Cisco Systems and Visa offered overseas roles for the first time.
International offers will shoot up by 30%, agreed a placement source at IIT Kanpur. More offers — from the likes of ServiceNow ($90,000) and Epic Systems ($90,000) — are in the offing, he said.
Other first day recruiters across the 16 IITs included the likes of Goldman Sachs, HUL, ITC, Credit Suisse, McKinsey & Co and BCG. IIT-Bombay, which on student demand, has moved up some core engineering companies to premium slots, had GE, Airbus and Qualcomm among others, vying with traditional first-day recruiters for the first time.
Tower Research with Rs 44 lakh for an international role and WorldQuant with Rs 42 lakh for a domestic profile were among prominent recruiters at campuses such as IIT-Kanpur, placement sources revealed. Goldman Sachs offered packages of Rs 26 lakh and Credit Suisse around Rs 15-18 lakh while Samsung offered the most for its Korea posting.
Final placements at the IITs start on December 1 and are completed in two phases. A majority of the recruiters come in the first few weeks of December while the subsequent phase starts in January. The highest-paying and most-in-demand companies are typically slotted for the first few days of placements.
At IIT-Kharagpur, Facebook has made the top offer while Google, Microsoft and Cisco also competed for the best talent. Oilfield services company Baker Hughes, ITC (Rs 18 lakh approx), Schlumberger, Cairn India, Shell were among those recruiting for domestic roles. Microsoft paid around Rs 20 lakh for the India profiles. Xerox, the global printer manufacturer picked up students for 'budding scientist' profiles, said placement sources.
"The placements have been very good so far and from midnight to 6 am on Monday (1st day slot), 49 offers were rolled out, out of which 8 were international. Around 31 companies are expected on the first day," Natesan Srinivasan, faculty in-charge, training & placement for IIT-Guwahati said. A statement from IIT-Madras said the highest offer was $129,500 while the highest domestic salary was Rs 30 lakh. Microsoft, Goldman Sachs, Samsung R&D and Xerox were among the companies who visited. The institute said it received 17 offers in the graveyard session (midnight to 6am) and another 64 in the forenoon one (6am to noon).
The placement season will continue till March-April, though a bulk of offers would roll out over the next three weeks.