Diploma projects were the way forward for start-ups, brands scouting for talent at the placement fair which began this week at the National Institute of Design(NID) for students of Ahmedabad, Gandhinagar and Bengaluru campuses. As per NID’s curriculum, all final semester students of UG and PG are required to undertake a diploma project with a client organisation.
Firms offered both full time positions alongwith internship opportunities to young designers on day two of the job fair that witnessed 55 firms participate which consisted of 30 per cent start-ups companies and design studios. “We are scouting for interaction designers and visual designers for our web and app domains. We are also hiring students with diploma projects and based on their performance during the internship will hire them full time later. Students with diploma projects will also be made to work on live projects and they face the same pressures and grind that a normal employee would. This becomes a good training ground for these freshers and hiring interns thereby is advantageous to both the company and the student,” said Mahalaxmi Nadar, Assistant Manager of HR at Bookymyshow.
Sources added that Walt Disney which came for placements interviewed close to 60 people and were looking to recruit only interns or students with diploma projects at the job fair. “We are interviewing students from apparel, textile design disciplines and hoping to pick up an intern and freshers for two full-time positions after scouring through 15 candidates. The job profiles would include in introducing a new pret apparel line, while the diploma students would requite to come up with a new range of textiles and scour for new age fabrics that involve work of traditional artisans and craftsmen. To a full timer we are offering a pay between Rs 7.2 -11 lakhs, while we will be giving Rs 30,000 as stipend to a diploma student,” said Lajjoo Chothani, MD of Lajjoo C Clothing.
The acceptance of design in making successful digital products has made UI/UX (User interface/experience design) domain very popular in the last 5 years and the same was witnessed at the job fair at NID. “We are offering in a range of between Rs 14- 22 lakhs pay package to full time positions in UI/UX to be filled in by mostly PG students with previous work experience, while the pay band for interns is around Rs 50,000 to interns. We have been coming to NID for the past 4-5 years and last year had also hired a motion designer to work on our new Apps,” said Rinchan Gupta, Head of Design at Internet company – InfoEdge (India) Ltd.
Farah Ahmad, an animation design UG student who was looking to bag a diploma project with a firm said “Since there were fewer animation studios in the fair, I have given interviews with Walt Disney, Bombay Design House, Paperboat Animation Studios, Ubisoft Entertainment India Pvt Ltd- a gaming company which need animation designers. If the project is really good with a firm I like then I will even let go having a great stipend and even work for free.”
A number of NID alumni who headed design teams across different companies were also on campus to recruit fresh talent like NID alumnus Saad Akhtar,Senior Manager – Interaction Design at Naukri.com. He said, “While we interviewed 30 students and are looking at recruiting 3 students for full time positions and looking at offering 4 diploma projects. We do not treat diploma project students on internships any different from our other employees and give them a lot of mentoring so that if we like their work we can take them on board after their internship period is over. We also make them work on new projects. Our past history of taking on diploma project students from NID has been good, in fact in the past we have launched several successfully ideas brought on board by diploma students from NID.”
Around 9 alumni led start-ups were also part of the fair and among the first time recruiters also included Axis Bank which scouted for full time digital and user experience (UI/UX) designers for an upcoming Centre of Excellence for Design which the bank plans to flag off in Mumbai soon. A first time recruiter at the fair, Chandigarh based The Ideas Factory spoke to students from graphic and exhibition design. Pallav Agarwal, HR at the firm said, “As our firm is into advertising and events and have a small team, we are looking at hiring one full time person and students doing diploma projects with a stipend of anywhere between Rs 15000-Rs 35000.”
Among some of the noted firms at the fair included NIIT Limited, Bombay Design House, BookMyShow, Adobe Systems, Axis Bank Ltd, Honda R&D (India) Pvt Ltd, Microsoft, Quikr India Pvt. Ltd, Godrej & Boyce, Titan, Walt Disney Company (India) Pvt. Ltd.and Godrej Consumer Products Ltd,among others.