It has been three months since LinkedIn opened its strategic office in Bengaluru and the India team is already in action with a new announcement. The team announced three strategic initiatives aimed at delivering value to broader segments of students, professionals and companies by democratising access to economic opportunity in India.
Specific to India, these initiatives are: LinkedIn
Placements, LinkedIn Lite and LinkedIn Starter Pack.
LinkedIn Lite empowers you to stay connected anytime, anywhere, even in areas where connectivity signals are not ideal.
This initiative is in tune with what Akshay Kothari, Country Manager and Head of Product, LinkedIn India, had announced in June. The team had focussed on ensuring that everyone has access to LinkedIn, even in low network areas.
The team calls LinkedIn Lite the platform's first, stripped-down mobile-website that is also data-efficient. According to the company, Lite loads four times faster, regardless of the mobile device and the network it is connected to.
Creating a level playing field for all
LinkedIn Placements, too, is aligned with the company's plans for the country. Jeff Weiner, CEO, LinkedIn says:
“The Placements is in to help students from every part of the country get placed in jobs that they deserve. There are 20 million jobs that can be digitally accessed via LinkedIn.”
Research by the LinkedIn team has shown that India's challenge would be to make its graduates employable. In fact, over 80 percent of the engineering graduates are not only unemployed but are unemployable according to the corporates as they do not have the right skillset.
Thus, LinkedIn Placements aims to provide a level playing field for every student, irrespective of where they are based.
Students can log onto the site to take an online assessment test, which gives them direct access to thousands of openings in 35 top corporates in India. LinkedIn has partnered with Wheebox, Aspiring Minds, CoCubes and HackerRank for assessment tests. The platform can be accessed at linkedin.com/placements or placements.com.
The Indian talent pool is not restricted to metro cities or the bigger colleges. In our visit to Tier II and Tier III cities, we realised that the real talent is hidden deep in these pockets and they need a level and fair playing field.
Working with startups
In its third initiative, LinkedIn Starter Pack is a platform designed specifically for startups and SMEs. The platform essentially puts all of LinkedIn's premium hiring, learning and marketing solutions into an easy-to-use package at a special rate of Rs 99,000.
More known as LinkedIn in a Box, it is a package live now at linkedin.com/starterpack and open for applications. The package is in its initial pilot launch on a first-come-first-serve basis.
India is our second largest market. And has over 37 million members in India. It is a very powerful and vital market for us. We believe India will be an important driver in our vision of creating economic opportunity to the world.
LinkedIn so far
Today, after 14 years, LinkedIn has a market cap of $18.23 billion. Microsoft also acquired LinkedIn for $196 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at $26.2 billion in June this year.
We are very bullish about the India market. From building this 22,000-sqft space in Bengaluru to building products that are purely India-specific, India is a big market for us.