Demystifying the Love of Pedigree of Indian Corporates

Everyone has a favorite that they want to go back to whenever the need arises. Be it getting milk from the grocery shop to clothes to fancy cars, everyone has a favorite brand. Such singular love for a brand is developed across time through multiple reasons but tends to stay long. When it comes to recruitment, the Indian corporate sector exhibits similar brand fetish for one such pedigree.

Hiring graduates from pedigrees like IITs and IIMs have been a trend in big giants of Indian corporate sector. When it comes to filling a top position in the company, hiring managers inevitably resort to these pedigrees and there are tangible reasons for that –

  1. Candidates with high aptitude – Pedigree students are often expected to have the higher aptitude, and better logical as well as problem-solving skills when compared to their peers from other institutes.

  2. Ability to work hard – It takes a lot of hard work and perseverance to crack JEE/CAT. So, it is expected that students from pedigrees are more hard-working than their counterparts in other institutes.

  3. Proven excellence – Even if IIT/IIM graduates do not have a relevant experience, they are more likely to learn and perform better than the ones from non-pedigrees, owing to the fact that they are more intelligent and have excelled in the most difficult exams to crack.

  1. Alma Mater bias – At times, hiring managers are alumni of these colleges and so they prefer candidates from their alma mater with a natural inclination of building a notion that they are a better lot.

  2. The urgency to fill a position – Even though this is a rare happenstance, but sometimes hiring managers are required to fill a position on short notice. In such situations, they inevitably resort to pedigrees as it saves their time and promises outcome.

  3. Brand tag – Hiring from pedigrees is more like a brand purchasing behavior. Companies often take pride in having individuals from these institutes in the workforce. It also helps to create a good impression in front of a client who also shares the same belief.


This kind of hiring pattern for higher positions is often observed in MNCs like EY, Deloitte, Cognizant & Boston Consulting Group, Accenture, and A.T Kearney.

More so, consultancies are not only targeting candidates from IIMs, they even prefer the most established institutes like those in Ahmedabad, Bangalore, and Kolkata and consider the rest of them to be in a rung lower than these three.


Contemporary corporate is comprised of jobs that demand street smartness along with academic eminence. Such soft skills can be found in competent candidates from other big institutes too. Corporate giants need to change this hiring pattern and look beyond the pedigrees to gather diverse and better workforce in their organizations.


According to an economic times report, some organizations like Hindustan Unilever Limited, Adobe India and Google India have ventured out of this hiring pattern. They are avoiding the official channel to recruit from the top engineering colleges.

Adobe is expected to adopt off-campus hiring method from this year, while Google has partially moved to off-campus recruitment. Google visited only IIT Bombay for the official final placement.

HUL is not picking candidates from the final placement but is picking up interns.


In an era wherein companies are inculcating new hiring strategies like blind hiring to enhance diversity in their workforce, the trend of hiring from pedigrees is beating the purpose.

Off-campus hiring can lead to a much diverse workforce and at the same time employers would be able to explore talents on a larger pool.


It’s a preconceived notion that hiring from pedigrees ensures better chances of successful recruitment. However, it also has following cons that organizations need to consider –

  • It is not cost effective as candidates from pedigrees demand higher package.

  • It takes a lot of time to hire through the official channel of campus recruitment.

  • Companies fail to create a diverse workplace of individuals with different perspectives.

  • It is observed that candidates from these colleges are more self-development oriented and tend to jump jobs quickly.

With some prominent companies adopting the unconventional means of recruitment and prevalence of the concept of blind hiring, we can hope that there will soon be a shift in the thought process and Indian Corporate giants will start looking beyond pedigrees and create a more efficient hiring pattern to attract diverse talent.