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Since 1st March, 1999
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Sombre IIM job scene

Bangalore, Feb. 28: At IIM Bangalore, it’s placement time again but the global downturn may have pooped the party.

On Day Zero of recruitment yesterday, an air of uncertainty not seen before hung over the campus. Last year, a record 103 of 254 students had landed jobs in companies like McKinsey, Lehmann Brothers and Boston Consulting Group on the first day itself.

This year, the figures are not yet out but the mood is far from upbeat. “The mood is somewhat sombre this year,” a faculty member said.

“Until now, it was a high-demand economy. Now suddenly, the situation has changed.”

He said that for the first time faculty members had personally contacted recruiters in an effort to increase participation by companies.

Recruiters said the gloom was widespread. “There is a decrease in the number of offers,” said Vinod Nair, the managing director (India) of Diamond Management and Technology Consultants.

His firm has completed this year’s hiring process with visits to IIM Calcutta and Bangalore and the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad.

“Our hiring (pattern) is similar to last year’s,” Nair said, adding that salaries offered were higher compared with previous years.

At IIM Calcutta, the first round of placements ended earlier this week. About 207 of 265 students got offers from 74 firms, with at least two reported to have been offered salaries of above Rs 1 crore a year. The second phase is expected to begin next week.

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