India’s biggest challenge for growth is talent. It is, in fact, a dual challenge—that of providing skilled resources for organisations to succeed, while creating employment for the youth of the country. The government views this as a critical policy area and supports it by providing budgetary support of more than Rs 10,000 crore annually.
However, in spite of best efforts, the ratio of trained versus employed youth has been far from satisfactory. One key reason is lack of credible demand-side data. As a result, the government struggles to fully support industry needs.
Data and availability of credible information is critical to make any government programme successful. To make this happen, all stakeholders—including industry, policy-makers, sector skill councils and training providers—need to come together on a common platform and collaborate.
So, what really is the issue?
One of the key challenges of skill development has been to get a correct assessment of the exact need of skilled resources from the industry. This is important to calibrate all government policies accordingly. Now, how can industry help and collaborate in this?
Many organisations still struggle to draw a reasonably forward-looking talent forecasting plan. Few follow ad hoc recruitment procedures, as it helps reduce costs. However, this creates havoc with talent suppliers. The worst hit are vocational skill training institutes. Without recruitment forecast data, most of the providers continue to recruit, train and graduate resources, knowing very little of the need from the demand side. This, in turn, leads to an oversupply of talent, with many of them unable to find employment. Organisations can take the first step and share this information early on with sector skill councils which have been set up by the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) and are entrusted with the task of executing national-level skill initiatives.
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