New Delhi, The Indian youth, who have immense potential, should chase their dreams, while honing their skills under proper guidance and training, said Shronit Ladhani, founder of NASSCOM.
According to Mr Lodhani, if every young person is allowed and given support to work on their passions and interests, they will themselves ensure that they build the right skills for the job.
‘We just have to show them the way and cheer them on. If each person becomes skilled for careers that exist today and that will exist in the future, our country will be able to harness its demographic dividend to its full extent.
Mr Lodhani said,” unemployment is the state of being unemployed, but ‘unemployability’ is when an individual isn’t acceptable for employment by a job provider. That’s the problem that India is suffering from – unemployability.”
According to Mr Lodhani, roughly seven million youth graduate in India every year. However, only 47 per cent of the Indian graduates are employable. The World Bank reports that only 2.3 per cent of the Indian workforce has formal skills training, he added.
Even the government’s flagship initiatives like ‘Make in India’ suffer from the effects of unemployability, he noted.
The founder of Essel Group supported edu-media startup CareerNinja said the Indian graduates need to be equipped with employable skills that they currently lack, in order to rebuild and transform India’s manufacturing sector and create millions of new jobs.
Mr Lodhani said the failure to transform India’s manufacturing sector is one of the reasons why the current unemployment rate is at 6.23 per cent and an unprecedented number of projects and investments worth USD 117.35 billion (Rs 7.63 lakh crore) have been scrapped.
One of the major reasons cited by these investors is lack of skilled talent, he revealed. At CareerNinja, we provide content to students to first discover and zereo on a career goal that’s best for them. Then, we help them prepare for those by giving further guidance via content as well as via industry mentors.
Within a year, we have impacted more than 50,000 people and over next year, our aim is to take this number to one million.
India’s been undergoing a huge demographic transition and now has a huge population that’s of employable age – roughly 65 per cent of India’s population, according to a report by ADECCO group.
While this makes India possess one of the world’s largest workforce, it doesn’t effectively harness the benefits of this demographic dividend, said the expert.
For a workforce that grows by 12 million each year to make an impact, it needs to be productive, which in turn requires proper education and skills training for the jobs of the future, in addition to the creation of new jobs, he observed.
‘We are at a phase where a Fourth Industrial Revolution is advancing, leading to a demand for new skills, which further challenge India’s young people,’ said Mr Lodhani.
That’s because Indian students receive education that prepares them for the jobs of yesterday, he noted.
According to the Future of Jobs Report by the World Economic Forum, some of the most popular emerging job roles are in the fields of Big Data, Internet of Things (IoT), Data Science, and Machine Learning.The top skills that the job market is demanding are analytical thinking, critical thinking and analysis, leadership, reasoning, social influence and creativity, he said.
The biggest reason for unemployability in India is the shortage of good institutions providing quality education, training the future workforce, and equipping their students with skills and knowledge that match the demands of the job market, he added.
‘We need a complete solution. Firstly, with all my time working with the Indian youth, I have realised that nothing will work well until the intent in the student isn’t strong enough.”
‘We need to put the ownership of their future on the students. We should help them understand where their interests and abilities lie, to find what they are passionate about. ‘We must then inspire them to take action and guide them on how to prepare for a career they are passionate about.
‘Despite the numerous courses available online, only a tiny percentage of students take these up,’ he added.