The truth about India is this: there are millions of jobs to be had. And the internet is a potent medium to land one. Over the last 15 years or so, a generation of young Indians has come to understand the idea of filtering through vacancies listed by companies on a website, uploading a resume and repeatedly checking their inbox to see if they’ve been shortlisted for a call. The internet platform, in this case, has everything going for it—hits and millions of dollars to be made.

– From applicants, by selling them premium features and membership. For jobs in India or abroad. For elite IIM jobs or regular, managerial jobs.

– From recruiters, by selling them premium slots and customised hiring pages and taking over their entire recruitment function. From private sector to government agencies, in India and abroad.

– Selling e-learning courses to interested folks; selling ‘How to make a strong resume’ service.

– Selling a dedicated head-hunting service.      

– Selling ad space to anyone who’s interested.

In short, the jobs internet platform is a win-win place to be in. Buyers pay money because they are hoping to monetarily benefit from being on this medium. Sellers pay money because the internet is efficient. Advertisers pay money because they want those eyeballs. Put all of this together, and you can start to appreciate why Info Edge’s Naukri is the biggest business in town—with more than 46 million resumes and 61,000 unique customers in FY16. In the same year, Naukri, from its recruitment services, recorded a turnover of Rs 531 crore and operating EBITDA of Rs 284 crore.

Quikr wants to be like Naukri. Maybe, a shade better. All of which brings us to the subject of QuikrJobs.

“The play here is not too hard to guess,” says a former Quikr official who requested not to be named because he didn’t want to get into any trouble with the company. “Quikr will try to compete on the pricing front by moving away from the premium that the likes of Naukri charge for databases. Offer cheaper rates for more profiles. But what remains to be seen is the quality of the profiles they sell.”

To do that, it is throwing in some knowhow. “They have hired some executives from the bigger companies—Naukri and TimesJobs, and these are people who have spent a good amount of time building those companies,” added the person quoted above. This is an obvious reference to Amit Jain, head of Quikr’s jobs vertical. Jain was previously business head at TimesJobs, where he spent over two and a half years.

It will be fair to say that Jain has his task cut out.

AUTHOR

Venkat Ananth

Venkat is currently in his tenth year in journalism. Prior to The Ken, he was Deputy Content Editor at Mint as part of the newspaper’s digital team. He also wrote in-depth features on the business of sport for the newspaper. His earlier assignments include Yahoo! (as a columnist) and the Hindustan Times, where he began his career. Born in Mumbai, Venkat holds a Bachelor of Mass Media (Journalism) degree from SIES College of Arts, Science and Commerce, Mumbai and a Master of Arts degree in International Studies from Goldsmiths, University of London. He currently resides in New Delhi, where he moved nearly five years ago.

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