New Delhi, March 16, 2022: Underlining the crushing impact of the pandemic on India’s manufacturing and exports ecosystem, a new survey by global B2B sourcing platform BuyHive has found that full-time job opportunities have shrunk for sourcing professionals during the pandemic. Sourcing and procurement professionals provide a vital link between exporters and global buyers and are typically employed by the latter for identifying and dealing with local manufacturers and suppliers. India is home to over two million sourcing professionals, according to BuyHive’s estimates.
84% of the sourcing and procurement professionals interviewed by BuyHive confirmed that job opportunities have declined across the board when compared to the pre-Covid era. Corresponding to trends seen in other functions and industries, the BuyHive survey revealed that availability of jobs was highest for junior or entry level professionals, whereas they were significantly lower for senior professionals.
“As Covid-19 impacted trade fairs, business events and travel, a significant proportion of sourcing professionals found themselves out of work. However, this survey points to a bleak outlook for full-time employment opportunities despite an imminent return to normalcy and the opening up of travel,” said Minesh Pore, CEO and co-founder of BuyHive.
BuyHive interviewed 124 senior-level sourcing professionals across India for this survey. All respondents had a minimum of 10 years of industry experience and several of them have worked for reputed global brands like Walmart, Tesco, Target, and The Home Depot, among others.
The survey also revealed that the majority of sourcing professionals are willing to take up independent and freelance sourcing projects, with 89% of sourcing professionals stating that freelance sourcing can be a rewarding and long-term career option for them. 76% of the respondents agreed or strongly agreed that international buyers will increasingly prefer working with independent sourcing professionals for most of their sourcing or procurement needs.
Among those who are willing to freelance with buyers, a whopping 95% said that it is very important for them to have a better control over their work-life balance, and to have the freedom to set their work timings as compared to a regular full-time job. A similar proportion of the respondents also affirmed that short-term sourcing projects or gigs added to their professional repertoire as they enabled them to work on varied projects with different clients.
The survey respondents however remain bullish on India’s export competitiveness. 63% respondents agreed that for large sourcing deals, Indian manufacturers or suppliers will continue to compete favorably with suppliers from other countries.