Call Us Now

+91 9606900005 / 04

For Enquiry

State of Working India 2023 Report: Analyzing the Indian Workforce


Azim Premji University’s Centre for Sustainable Employment has published the “State of Working India 2023” report, providing insights into the Indian workforce. The report analyzes unemployment rates, women’s participation, intergenerational mobility, and caste-based workforce dynamics. Data from sources like the National Statistical Office’s surveys, including Employment-Unemployment Surveys and Periodic Labour Force Surveys, as well as the India Working Survey, were used in the report.


GS III: Indian Economy

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Changing Workforce Dynamics
  2. Intergenerational Mobility and Caste Dynamics
  3. Challenges in Job Creation and Salaried Employment

Changing Workforce Dynamics

Shift Towards Regular Wage Jobs

  • Share of regular wage or salaried workers increased from 18% to 25% for men and 10% to 25% for women between 2004 and 2019.
  • Creation of around 5 million regular wage jobs annually between 2017 and 2019.

Gender Pay Gap

  • In 2004, salaried women earned 70% of what men earned.
  • By 2017, the gap reduced to women earning 76% of men’s earnings.
  • Gap remained constant from 2017 to 2021-22.

Unemployment Rates

  • Overall unemployment rate decreased to 6.6% in 2021-22 from 8.7% in 2017-18.
  • Graduates under 25 had a high unemployment rate of 42.3%.
  • Higher secondary graduates had a lower unemployment rate of 21.4%.

Post-Pandemic Workforce

  • 60% of women were self-employed post-Covid, compared to 50% before.
  • Increase in workforce participation was accompanied by reduced self-employment earnings.

Intergenerational Mobility and Caste Dynamics

Upward Mobility

  • Intergenerational upward mobility increased, indicating socio-economic progress.
  • Weaker trend for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes compared to general castes.
  • Sons of SC/ST casual wage workers shifted to other employment, including informal regular wage work.

Caste-wise Workforce

  • Share of SC workers in casual wage work reduced, more pronounced in the general caste category.
  • In 2021, 40% of SC workers in casual employment vs. 13% of general caste workers.
  • Around 22% of SC workers in regular wage work vs. 32% of general caste workers.

Challenges in Job Creation and Salaried Employment

Job Creation

  • Economic growth doesn’t proportionately create jobs; job-generating capacity decreases with GDP growth.
  • Transition from agriculture to other sectors doesn’t guarantee salaried employment.

Informal Salaried Jobs

  • Majority of salaried work is informal, lacking contracts and benefits.
  • Quality salaried jobs with proper benefits becoming less common.

Graduate Unemployment

  • High aspirations and wage demands may contribute to graduate unemployment.
  • Graduates from well-off households might choose unemployment due to economic security.

-Source: Indian Express

December 2023