What are core and non-core companies?

‘Core profile’, ‘non-core companies’, etc., are terms that you are very likely to encounter even during your early days at IIT Madras. But, what exactly do these terms mean? Let’s simplify all the jargon surrounding these terms.

These terms have significant relevance in the context of internships and placements. The distinction between core and non-core companies (or profiles) is often made to categorize companies based on their relevance to specific engineering disciplines.

Core companies (or profiles) are those related to the core engineering disciplines, such as electrical, mechanical, civil, chemical, and so on. Core companies often recruit engineers from specific branches of engineering, matching their expertise with the company’s needs. For instance, the Mechanical Engineering department collaborates with several core engineering companies such as Hindustan Unilever, ITC Limited, and P&G, among others; these companies also provide abundant internship opportunities. Students interested in their respective core engineering disciplines are inclined to sit for these companies. Most core roles are only open to students from the relevant departments.

Non-core companies may not directly be related to core engineering disciplines but would still require expertise in a specific domain. Companies that work in sectors such as IT, finance, consulting, software development, etc., are often classified as non-core companies. For instance, companies like Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, and Morgan Stanley recruit for roles related to investment banking. Such roles are usually open to students from a wide range of departments (if not all).

In short, core companies are more sought after by students from core engineering branches for jobs related to their field of study. In contrast, non-core companies offer a broader range of opportunities that may appeal to students from various academic backgrounds.