A Report on Youth Unemployability in India

1 January 2017

Students have weak foundations because of which they are not picking up new skills. Picking up new skills can develop only when the people lose faith on conventional wisdom. This sentence may appear arbitrary in the beginning but there is a catch. The new skills can never be picked up unless we promise to unlearn old one. By unemployable, we refer to individuals who have to be trained by the industry in basic skills which they should have acquired through college and university education,” said by Manish Sabharwal, Chairman, TeamLease Services.

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Our institutions are misaligned with demand. We need a modular framework of courses covering a mix of knowledge, skill and work-attitude modules that fit people to high volume vocations and incentivise ‘edupreneurs,'” avers Visty Banaji, Executive Director, Godrej Industries. While problems of unemployment are not new, the rise in number of people who are unable to meet the industry’s needs due to the failure of institutions to impart career-oriented knowledge and skills-set is a pressing problem, as it can hamper India’s double digit growth.

The skill deficit hurts more than the infrastructure deficit because it sabotages equality of opportunity and amplifies inequality while poor infrastructure maintains inequality (it hits rich and poor equally),” A recent survey throws light on the problem, problems with the educated youth. They are mainly lacking three types of skills. 1. Communication skill 2. Analytical skill and problem solving 3. Domain. While in interview approximately 60% candidates are screened due to lack of communication skills. Rest 25% is screened for analytical skills and 5% for their lack of knowledge in their respective domain.

Hence 90% of educated youth are lacking in one of these three main skills required for job and employment. Only 10% of educated force of India is employable. Several companies have introduced strategies entwined with the college syllabus to equip students with the latest demands of the industry and thereby customize education accordingly. Information Technology major Infosys has the campus Connect initiative with engineering institutions in Mysore, Bangalore, Pune and other cities, through which workshops and seminars are held for students to provide them with industry-specific exposure.

Likewise, ICICI Bank is working in upgrading curriculum in areas like wealth management and credit relationship sales with institutes like MDI, NMIMS and so on. As a natural growth pattern, this strong base then needs to be given adequate options towards vocational training. The critical pillar in the strategy to tackle the employability challenge is thus the school education system. The next is vocational training.

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