China and India have a huge talent pool, numerous prestigious universities graduate thousands of engineers ever year, their skills in maths and science remain unmatched in the world and their hard work and dedication to excel make each one a winner. Yet of late, seeking experience in fields we have little knowledge of, and which yet are growing exponentially, Indian and Chinese conglomerates are sourcing foreign talent.
Beijing Automotive Group (BAIC), the state-owned carmaker, held its first German recruitment fair in Stuttgart, Munich and Aachen – to hire engineers. In the same month, Dongfeng Motor, another large Chinese carmaker, went to Munich looking for talent, following in the steps of state-owned car manufacturers such as SAIC Motor Corp and ambitious private carmakers such as Geely. India holds the same story, too Reliance Retail, the retail subsidiary of India’s largest private company recently named Rob Cissell, former chief operating officer of Walmart China, as CEO and Shawn Gray, vice-president in-charge of store operations of the same company as COO.
While quite a few Indian and Chinese professionals have risen through the ranks internationally to claim high profile jobs in western conglomerates, many large companies in India and China are facing a top level talent crunch. The biggest reason to hire foreign talent say analysts is their experience, not just of the particular industry which is in its infancy in China and / or India, but also for their international vision to take the company global.
However, it’s not just foreign talent that Chinese and Indian companies are seeking, we are also looking at sourcing professionals from each others countries. Recently four Chinese finance firms knocked on IIM Kolkata’s door seeking top graduates for plump postings in Chinese financial companies. Similarly, Indian software engineers are welcomed with a red carpet in China, as are Chinese manufacturing and infrastructure, experts in India. Until now, the model works well – if you can’t do it yourself, import the talent, learn from them and perfect the skill. Yet with immigration laws becoming difficult, companies will need to find alternatives.