Every year, lakhs of students complete their studies in various streams across India. Many of them aspire to join the best possible organizations in the country. In that process they are geared up to explore all the opportunities that come their way. But the mute question is: “Are they employable”? The general perception across the country is that the graduates coming out of colleges are not job-ready, and only about 20 per cent to 25 per cent are employable.
What are the factors that lead to this situation? Thought it is difficult to exactly pinpoint the reasons, there are certain issues that plague the student community at large. Do our educational institutes really teach about the nuances of the jobs, in tune with any industry vertical? Or they simply teach the subjects and leave everything to the students to get a foot hold in industry of their choice?
Overall, the level of education the students receive at their college level, irrespective of which stream they chose, is always not up to the mark. Barring a few institutions, majority of them fail to inculcate a sense of developing skills other than studying the subject. Worst, in many institutions they even lack teachers with good domain knowledge to teach the subjects. Also, for many students the letters of the degrees such as B.E, MCA after their name seems to be the main attraction rather than actually gaining the domain knowledge.
Students must realize that in today’s competitive scenario with a degree and 60 per cent aggregate marks will not help them to land in their dream jobs. With lakhs of students graduating every year, though adding additional qualifications to their CVs is a welcome move, the key to success lies in their attitude. Students should be trained well to stay mentally fit take on the demands of work.
According to a data, 88 percent of employers are looking for people who are culturally fit to work in their organization, rather than look a particular skill set that matches their demand. The vast majority of employers knew very well that they cannot expect the candidates to master or completely understand their system of operations. So, most of them are looking for few things such as: Are they keen to work in their organization, do they have the professionalism in them, Are they mentally ready for the challenges, Are they confident and self motivated/etc…
By and large the organizations are looking for people who have the potential to become an asset to the company. Unfortunately, one cannot expect these traits from the freshers straight from the college. These are the skills that one develops over a period of time. So, what can they do to ensure that they will be successful in today’s competitive job market?
The yardstick for the required skills differs from job to job and from organization to organization. These skills can be developed through learning and experience such as taking up a part-time job, an internship, volunteer work, campus activities and should also involve themselves in extra-curricular activities. This will increase their confidence and inculcate a sense of responsibility in them, besides providing an opportunity to meet people.
Students must also plan ahead. They should think about their career planning right from their college days. It is very important to judiciously plan their time accordingly in tune with their chosen career path. It is just not enough if they spend considerable time on obtaining their degree, but should also look forward to the scope of enhancing their knowledge in their domain. Besides, today there are out there many institutes which teach professional skills. It is time the students should focus on developing these professional skills, before they embark on their journey in shaping their career.
Further the students should also take note that the skill sets required for jobs are ever-changing in tune with the demands of the various industries. Also, the education institutes also consider various options that raise the bar of knowledge for the students and make them more worthy. It is time the institutions should analyze and understand the industry requirements and formulate methodologies to develop the skills through academic activities. They should think of bringing in the desired change in the curriculum that enhances the knowledge of the students. Besides, they should also try having frequent interactions with the industries and offer training according to their needs. Incorporating all these factors in the system, will surely result in improving the employability aspects of the students significantly.
- M D Sridharan