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Data: Share of Women employees in the select nine sectors increases as per the latest Quarterly Employment Survey


The second-quarter report of the Quarterly Employment Survey (QES) for the period July to September 2021 was recently released. The report states that the total employment in these nine sectors increased by around 2 lakhs compared to the first quarter. The share of women employees increased to 32.1%.

Recently, the Ministry of Labour & Employment released the report of the second quarter of Quarterly Employment Survey (QES) for the period July to September 2021. This report is part of the ‘All-India Quarterly Establishment-based Employment Survey (AQEES)’. This is the second in the series, the first publication of which, covering the first quarter of 2021-22, was published in September 2021. The AQEES, conducted by the Labour Bureau, has been taken up to provide quarterly updates about employment vacancies, training, and other related parameters for selected nine (9) sectors of the non-farm economy over successive quarters. These nine (9) sectors, viz; Manufacturing, Construction, Trade, Transport, Education, Health, Accommodation & Restaurants, Information Technology (IT) & Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), and Financial Services, account for a substantial share of the total employment in the non-farm establishments in the country. 

9 sectors accounting for 85% of total employment in units with 10 or more workers have been chosen

The selected nine sectors account for around 85% of the total employment in units with 10 or more workers as per the 6th Economic Census. For this survey, around 12,000 units were targeted to be covered among those establishments employing 10 or more workers in the organised sector from these 9 sectors. These were selected as given in the Directory of Establishments in the Sixth Economic Census

Information has been collected from 11,503 units across the nine selected sectors all over the country in the second round of QES, as compared to 10,867 units covered in the first round. The sector-wise number of units covered in each quarter is in the following table. Among the sectors covered, the highest number of sample establishments were from the manufacturing sector, followed by Trade, Education, and Accommodation & Restaurants.

A schedule which contains information on identification, establishment particulars, employment with the breakup of characteristics such as gender, type, and nature along with vacancy details, skill development program conducted, on-the-job training provided by establishments, etc. has been used for the survey. Detailed information on the methodology and limitations of the survey was published by Factly earlier. 

The type of ownership of most establishments was proprietary

The percentage distribution of establishments by their type of ownership for the 9 selected sectors is demonstrated in the following chart. The share of Proprietary establishments accounted for the highest with 30.2%, followed by Private Limited Company accounting for 21.6% and Government/PSU with 20.3%. Non-profit institutions account for 11.7% while the share of other types of ownership such as partnerships, cooperatives, and others are below 10% each. 

Employment in the 9 sectors has gone up by 2 lakhs in the second quarter

Data indicates that ‘Private Limited Companies’ were most prominent in the IT/BPOs sector with 83.1% of the establishments in the sector followed by the Construction sector with 47%. The estimated establishments which are ‘Private Limited Companies’ in the construction sector have come down from 56.3% in Q1 to 47% in Q2. 

Within Government/PSU ownership, the highest number of estimated units were reported in the financial services sector (40.6%), followed by Education (43%) as compared to 54.2% and 42.7% respectively in the previous quarter. The share of ‘non-profit institutions’ type of establishments was high for Education (31.5%) and Health (15.7%) sectors while there were no such establishments in Construction, IT/BPOs, and Transport sectors. This is understandable as mainstream education establishments still operate through non-profit societies in most places. 61.7% of the establishments in Accommodation & Restaurants, 50.8% in Trade, and 43.2% in Manufacturing had Proprietary ownership.

The estimated total employment in the nine selected sectors in the second quarter of 2021-22 was 3.10 crore approximately, which is 2 lakhs more than the estimated employment in the first quarter which was 3.08 crore. Furthermore, the total employment for these 9 sectors was reported as 2.37 crore in the Sixth Economic Census (2013-14).

The manufacturing sector alone accounted for 39.1% of the total employment estimated in the select 9 sectors, followed by Education with 22%. The health sector accounted for 10.8% while IT/BPO accounted for 10.7% in Q2, up from 6.7% in Q1. The trade sector accounted for 5.3% of the employment in Q2, down from 6.6% in Q1. 

The share of female employees has increased in Q2

The overall share of female workers in these nine (9) sectors has improved to reach 32.1% in the second quarter, up from 29% in the first quarter. In the first quarter, the share of female workers was lower than that recorded in the Sixth Economic Census (31%). 

Moreover, of the 3.1 crores estimated employment in the second quarter, 98.1% were employees and only 1.9% were self-employed. Among the self-employed, Financial Services is the only sector in which there were more females than males whereas there were no self-employed females in the IT/BPOs sector. Among the employed, the share of females was higher than that of their male counterparts in the health sector with 50.7%. The share of female employees was also substantial in the sectors of Education (44.6%), IT/BPOs (37.6%), and Financial Services (31.1%).

87% of workers were regular workers

In the QES, employees have been categorized into 5 groups based on the terms of employment. These are self-employed, regular employees, contractual employees, fixed-term employees, and casual employees. As per data for the second quarter, 87% of the workers were regular employees, 8.3% were contractual employees, 2% were self-employed, 2.1% were casual employees, and only 0.6% were fixed-term employees. Compared to the previous quarter’s survey, the share of contractual employees, and self-employed has increased marginally.  

Further, the share of self-employed was higher in Financial Services (8.5%) and Accommodation & Restaurants sector (7.5%) while it was the lowest in the IT/BPOs sector with only 0.1%. In the previous quarter, only 1% of the employees in Financial Services, 3.9% in Accommodation & Restaurants, and 1% in IT/BPO sector were self-employed.

IT/BPOs sector had 97.7% regular employees, the most for any sector. All the sectors, except Construction, had more than 80% regular employees. In the construction sector, only 71.6% were regular employees. In the second quarter, 20% were contractual employees and 6.4% were casual employees in the Construction sector while the same was 17.6% and 12.5% respectively in the first quarter. 

In the manufacturing sector, 11.5% were contractual employees in Q2, up from 10.4% in the previous quarter.  Fixed-term employees have a very low share in all the sectors with the education sector having the highest share (1%). Even in the previous quarter, the share of fixed-term employees was below 1% in all sectors except manufacturing (1.6%).

91.6% of the employees in the IT/BPO sector and 59.8% in Financial Services were at least graduates

The education qualification of workers revealed that 28.4% of those working in seven sectors, excluding Education and Health, were matriculated or less educated, while another 37% were graduates or had higher qualifications. Only 18.8% of the non-Clinical workers were matriculated/secondary or less educated in the health sector while this is 26.4% of the non-Teaching staff in the Education sector. In the previous quarter, the share was 22% and 15% respectively. 

Those with graduate-level and higher educational qualifications constituted 91.6% of the employees in the IT/BPO sector and 59.8% in Financial Services, up from 70% and 59% respectively, in the previous quarter. More than 40% of the employees in both Health and Education sectors were at least graduates while the same was below 35% in the previous quarter. 

Improvement in employment and opportunities post-second wave is evident

Almost 90% of the establishments had less than 100 workers as compared to 91% in the first quarter. This share in the IT/BPO sector dropped to 30% in the second quarter, down from 34.8% in the first quarter. 12% of the IT/BPO establishments engaged 500 workers or more.

In the Health sector, 18% of the establishments in the first quarter had 100 or more workers which increased to 19% in the second quarter. In the case of the transport sector, 14% of the total estimated establishments were operating with 100 or more workers.

The increase of nearly 2 lakhs in employment in the second quarter could be due to the relaxation of curbs and drop in COVID-19 cases in the second quarter following the second wave in the first quarter of 2021-22. Furthermore, the survey highlighted that an estimated 5.6% of the establishments had vacancies in positions and the estimated number of total vacancies was 4.3 lakhs. About 65.8% of such vacancies were not due to retirement or resignation of the employees meaning that there is an improvement in the availability of job opportunities in these sectors. 

The QES for the second quarter revealed that the proportion of women workers has increased. However, only a small proportion was self-employed. The Minister of Labour and Employment recently said that in addition to the higher participation of women in the workforce, more women should be in positions of decision-making. 

QES captures a small part of the employment scenario

The data on new EPF subscribers is an indicator of the creation of new jobs and the addition of formal employment. Data from EPFO indicates that the number of new EPF subscribers was 9.76 lakhs in July 2021, 9.8 lakhs in August 2021, and 9.49 lakhs in September 2021. About 58% of them were in the 18 to 25 years age group. The net payroll between July & September 2021 as per EPF data is around 38 lakhs. In other words, the QES seems to be capturing a small part of the formal employment market. 

Featured Image: Quarterly Employment Survey


About Author

A bachelor’s degree in mathematics and master’s in social science, she is driven by ardent desire to work with this unique combination to create her own path instead of following the herd. Having served a stint as the college union chairperson, she is a strategist who is also passionate about nature conservation, art and loves solving Sudoku.

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