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How Flipkart, Myntra, M&S, other retailers geared up for the first Covid-free festive season in three years  

How Flipkart, Myntra, M&S, other retailers geared up for the first Covid-free festive season in three years  

Retailers have been hiring delivery and warehousing personnel, in-shop demonstrators and customer support associates since July-August.

Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Meesho and Snapdeal are kicking off the festive shopping season Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Meesho and Snapdeal are kicking off the festive shopping season

Online and offline retail players are all geared up for the first Covid-free festive season in three years as major e-commerce players such as Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Meesho and Snapdeal are kicking off the festive shopping season with their annual big sales today.  

“This year, we will create over 50,000 additional direct seasonal jobs in our supply chain, taking the total workforce count to 2.5 lakh and also create lakhs of indirect jobs through our vendors and trucking partners, etc,” Flipkart’s Senior Vice President and Head of Supply Chain Hemant Badri told Business Today. Same time last year, the firm had said it had a 1.15 lakh-strong workforce. “Women hold 10,000 roles in the 2.5 lakh-strong workforce, Flipkart’s highest-ever representation of women in the supply chain,” Badri added. 

Online fashion retailer Myntra has said it is adding 16,000 seasonal jobs to cater to its estimated peak demand of 9,00,000 concurrent users and 13,000 orders per minute. Of this total number, 2,500-plus are women and 300-plus are differently-abled personnel, fulfilling roles across functions such as sorting, grading and packing across key major hubs, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata, the firm had said.  

“The last two pandemic years, e-commerce managed to do well, but retail was not flourishing. This time, the push is on retail. So, the consumer goods sector is seeing a lot of demand because people want to buy things for their homes. Plus, hospitality and tourism spaces have also opened up,” says Indian Staffing Federation’s Executive Director Suchita Dutta. She sees 15-20 per cent hiring increase in these sectors, but a 30 per cent hiring growth in the hospitality and tourism sectors because they were not hiring much for the past two years.  

The hiring began as early as the second quarter, especially in July itself, experts say. For instance, offline fashion retailer Marks & Spencer Reliance Retail hired an additional 10 per cent head count in the second quarter itself. The number is usually 5 per cent in an average year. “Our workforce is in place because we have a very rigorous training on products, customer proposition as well as store-level processes. We had paused all hiring after the pandemic hit. This year the business has to go back to normal because customers are raring to go to the stores. We have invested in about 200 people at the store level,” the firm’s Head – HR & Sustainability Mukta Nakra told Business Today on the sidelines of the Retailers Association of India’s Manning Modern Retail (MMR) 2022 event a few days ago.  

Job portal Monster’s July index showed the retail sector posting an impressive 10 per cent jump compared to the year-ago level, indicating that festive hiring was certainly on the rise. Consumer brands such as electronics and apparel companies are all launching new products and hiring temporary staffers, experts say.  

The roles in demand for e-commerce are delivery and warehousing personnel for packing, picking, loading, unloading, hub operations, managing information systems and customer support, while in-shop demonstrators and customer support are in demand in offline retail. Beauty and health advisors in personal care sectors also sought-after by companies this time, experts say. 

Also read: Amazon, Flipkart to start festive sale on Sept 23; check offers, discounts, products