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Demand for blue-collar jobs surged in April, May: Betterplace

Amid widespread reports of massive job losses due to the pandemic, blue-collar workforce management firm Betterplace Safety Solutions said demand for and onboarding of workers surged in April and May this year.

Betterplace Safety Solutions claims to be the country’s largest and the world’s sixth-largest tech platform for blue-collar workforce management.

According to the latest CMIE report, the country lost as much as 25.3 million jobs since January — 2.5 million in February, 0.1 million in March, 7.4 million in April, and 15.3 million in May — taking the unemployment rate to 11.9 percent in May.

The 30-day moving average unemployment rate as of June 6 was 13 percent and the labour participation rate that had fallen to 40 percent has declined further to 39.7 percent as of June 6. Last year, the job losses were reportedly at a whopping 75 million, as per the report.

Skill development

According to the Jungle Ventures and Unitus Ventures-backed Betterplace, which has already onboarded over 20 million on its platform since its inception in 2015, there are over 450 million blue-collar workers in the country.

Bengaluru-based Betterplace, also backed by 3one4 Capital and Venture Highway, supplies blue-collar workers to large companies like Amazon, Flipkart, Ola, Dunzo, Swiggy, L&T, Flipkart, JBM Auto, Randstad, Sodexo, LIC, Accenture, among 1,000 other companies.

Pravin Agarwala, Co-founder and Chief Executive of Betterplace, told PTI that while they have on-boarded 1.15 lakh workers each in April and May this year, the demand for jobs reached a whopping 14.2 lakh in May across the country.

Of the 14.2 lakh demand, 2.6 lakh came for sales executives, 1.6 lakh for delivery boys, over 88,000 for retail sales executives and over 45,000 for basic emergency medical technicians, among others.

Agarwala said the company, with an annual revenue run rate of around Rs 90 crore, will offer its services in more languages. Currently, its services are available in eight languages — Hindi, English, all the four Southern languages, Bengali, and Marathi and will soon offer in Oriya and Assamese too.

As part of its service, Betterplace also gives on-boarded credit facility and insurance cover.

Agarwala further said the firm will be entering Indonesia and the Philippines in the first quarter of 2022.

On asked about profitability, he said they have been profitable by gross margin based on unit economics, but not net profitable as they are still in the investment phase.

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