ECommerce Sector will Witness Sharpest Salary Hikes This Year: Report


Salary Hikes

Reeling under heavy losses and relying largely upon fresh funds to go on with their operations and aggressive marketing strategies does not seem to deter e-commerce majors from giving unprecedented salary hikes to their best performing employees.

Almost all employees working with e-commerce companies can expect a 12.4% hike on their salaries this year while the top performers might get upto double that amount of increment. This is expected to be the healthiest and the best pay raise to employees anywhere in India.

Aon Hewitt’s Annual Salary Increase Survey in India has, after covering 580 companies across the length and breadth of the country, predicted a ‘cautious’ 10-6% raise across various sectors. The increment hike charts produced by the company show e-commerce sector on top, followed closely by infrastructure, life sciences and media.

The salary hikes, say experts, have been fuelled by changing sentiments. As the e-commerce sector in India, inspite of being in the umbilical stage, is bubbling with activity, the employee expectations have gone up too.

“The increment expected by the average employee of ecommerce sector is 26% more than what he got last year,” points out the report.

Anandorup Ghose, rewards consulting practice leader at Aon Hewitt India, who has been observing the trends across several vertical for a long period of time now, draws our attention to the steep hikes seen by the telecom sector in 2005. He says that ‘excess optimism or froth’ in any sector is followed by a period of stabilization.

Salary increase is happening in established and matured ecommerce players, he said.

The survey also helps highlight the fact that the salary hikes will be linked to performances and not rolled out to everyone working for the company. While the best performers in ecommerce sector will get an increment which is upto 2.3 times more than that of their other colleagues who just managed to ‘meet expectations’, the best performers in other industries will see a raise of 1.6 times more than their average counterparts.

At a time when these sectors are witnessing unprecedented growth, which is expected to interpolate into the future as well, no employer would want their best brains or most industrious performers to move on to join another platform. Worse still, a rival.

Keeping this in mind, mobile payments and ecommerce platform Paytm proposes a salary hike of upto 30% raise for its best employees while those who met their expectations or targets will get a hike of 15-20 percent, an increase over the 13-15 percent rolled out to them over the previous year.

“We need to retain the best because there are many who want to join ecommerce from other sectors but very few who have the skills that we need. We have to train them and therefore cannot lose (to competition),” said Amit Sinha, VP, people and business for Paytm.

Echoing the same sentiment, Ashu Malhotra, vice president and chief human resources officer (CHRO) at Jabong, also said that salary is one of the most important factors that helps in drawing and retaining the best talent.

The proposed salary hikes also come at a time when Indian employers have taken to doling out generous bonuses by way of all expenses paid foreign vacations, cars and, the most recent case, the highly desired iPhone 6 devices to reward those driving growth.

KPMG India partner Ashvin Vellody, who tracks ecommerce, attributes sharp rises in the rate of salary increments to the major players in the sector scaling up their operations in both B2B and B2C sector in the coming period, because of which it becomes imperative for them to attract the best brains while making sure that the ones already aboard the team do not quit as they see greener pastures elsewhere.

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