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2020 wrap-up: Cautious optimism in jobs sector as year comes to a close

Several Indian professionals lost their jobs from April 2020 onwards due to the COVID-19 and allied lockdown impact on the economy. The employment market is crawling back to normalcy, but with caution.

December 29, 2020 / 08:08 AM IST

The coronavirus outbreak had the biggest impact on the jobs sector in the country. Close to 10 million jobs were lost across small, medium and large firms with sectors like travel, hospitality, e-commerce and real estate among the worst hit.

However, ever since the lockdown restrictions eased from July 2020 onwards, there has been a slow revival across sectors. The educational services sector has gained the most with e-learning becoming the new favourite across households.

But, while hiring intent has improved, companies are taking a cautious approach, hiring aggressively only for select roles and limiting numbers for generic roles like sales, marketing and administration.

These are some trends in the sector
- Hiring has gone completely virtual across companies
- Educational services sector is hiring in large numbers while the traditional sector is going slow

- Mass hiring by IT, consulting firms has hit a pause due to COVID-19

Hiring final 12042020

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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Infographics by Ritesh Presswala
M Saraswathy is a business journalist with 10 years of reporting experience. Based in Mumbai, she covers consumer durables, insurance, education and human resources beat for Moneycontrol.
first published: Dec 28, 2020 05:49 pm

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