Large corporate houses and hiring managers are often seen complaining about the unavailability of well-trained employable candidates in universities and colleges today. Hiring honchos have often said that a major educational degree does not guarantee employability in graduates today!
Entrepreneur India spoke to Santanu Paul, Co-Founder & CEO TalentSprint, an Indian youth career accelerator about challenges of making graduates employable today.
What is the biggest deficit of today’s youth that prevents them from getting employed?
The deficit is multidimensional. Our youth lack either hard skills, or soft skills, or both. Sometimes they do not have the ability to navigate even the aptitude and reasoning tests that are enforced by the companies as their first selection filter.
At a fundamental level, the biggest deficit is that their colleges have brought them up on a steady diet of lectures and exams, but they have never been exposed to problem solving or learning-by-doing of any kind. So they don't have the ability to define, research, design and implement the kind of solutions that their employers want them to, Paul said.
Inception of the TalentSpirit
From 2003-2008, when Paul was heading the Indian arm of a multinational software company, it became clear that the college education system was failing in its basic duty to equip youth with employable skills.
As a result, the company used to spend tons of money and lots of time trying to remediate the skill gaps of thousands of young engineers they recruited every year. It was an eye-opening and jaw-dropping experience and it sowed the seeds of TalentSprint in their minds.
Funded by Nexus Venture Partners and the National Skill Development Corporation, TalentSprint aims to empower over a million young job seekers to pursue careers in information technology, banking and financial services, and education. The platform delivers technology-enabled experiential learning through a mix of cloud, contact, and colleges. It leverages digital and social media for youth outreach and forward integrates with a high quality employer network.
Guidance provided to candidates to pursue the right career
“Obviously, candidates have their own views and preferences about the kind of careers they wish to pursue. They are understandably influenced by friends, family, and society, and they place a premium on careers that are lucrative and socially rewarding.
However, we put them through assessments and tests that are a true mirror of their actual skills, their natural comfort zones, and then follow up with professional counselling. Sometimes we are able to persuade them to follow the right kind of careers that suit their natural abilities. At other times, we are happy to be guided by them on what they want pursue,” Paul said
Job Trends of 2017
There are going to be a lot of opportunities in the information technology, banking, financial services, and education sectors. skills in digital marketing, product management, design, data science, internet of things, content development, augmented reality, artificial intelligence, digital payments, and cyber security will be in high demand, Paul adds.