Author: Bhaskar Majumdar
Continuous learning has become indispensable to stay competitive in the job market, given the changes brought about by technological advancements and other socio-economic factors. The learning contrast in India has also undergone myriad shifts off late. There was a time, when we were talking about the demand and skill gap industries face, while the country leaves no stones unturned in providing the best-in-class theoretical education. Practical life skills were more or less ignored. Industries struggled to hire industry ready employable professionals. Many large enterprises started in-house academic training centres to make people employment ready or partnered with different academia.
With the current scenario, online courses have got a major push and many professionals are opting for online or virtual courses to upgrade their profile as well as to utilize the time in hand during the lockdown. All good educational institutes are offering multiple online courses as the demand is on the rise. As the COVID 19 pandemic and the lockdown to contain its spread has kept us within the confines of our homes, many are taking advantage of their available time at hand, away from their otherwise busy schedules, to hone and nurture new skill sets and come out of the quarantine as better and more equipped professionals.
As per a report by the World Economic Forum, more than half of all workforce in India will require upskilling and reskilling to meet the talent demands of the near future. This skill up-gradation will be required not only in understanding and utilizing the emerging technologies such as AI, AR, VR and the like, but also in terms of learning soft skills such as effective and meaningful communication, meticulous attention to detailing and listening skills. At a time when business landscapes and industry ecosystems are going through major shifts, primarily driven by technological developments and innovation, remaining relevant and staying ahead of the curve has become indispensable. Recognizing this trend, many top tier academic institutions are offering online courses to help professionals harness their existing skillsets and learn new ones.
With intelligent mechanization and AI set to soar, many are devoting a significant amount of time in honing their skills. As businesses undergo changes in approach and outcomes, spearheaded by technology, employees who are skilled right can lead to organizational growth and success in the right manner. Many job aspirants are also looking for organizations that provide on the job training and career support for their professional growth and this trend is driving enterprises to use such an arrangement as a branding opportunity.
Traditional learning methods and the skill sets that worked out fine just a few years ago for one to build a successful career are now redundant. To manage this dichotomy, companies across verticals and industries are either forming alliances with top educational institutions to offer online courses to aspiring professionals or are hiring consultants and sanctioning capital corpus to invest in organizational Learning & Development. In a dynamically changing business landscape, consistent, and continuous upskilling is inevitable for thriving and growing. Any interested individual can register for such courses from a known institute, for a nominal fee, learn from the confines of their homes, prepare for exams and earn certificates.
Technological innovation has introduced several learning courses online and most of the time they are freely available on the internet. MOOCs offer a variety of personalized courses that one can leverage upon to upskill themselves, comfortably and easily. Many firms have come up with relevant training modules by allying with academic institutions of repute, not only to impart training on advanced skill sets but also to certify participants for all their career requirements of the future.
Employers today take into cognizance online degrees as much as a degree from attending a brick and mortar school. With the current technological improvements, many employees are opting for their education and training online. Because hiring managers prioritize this aspect, having the right courses and programs in the academic section of your resume will depict that you are not only ambitious but you are also interested in improving on your regular professional front.
Choosing such courses also open up future job opportunities in other organizations. These online learning avenues also deploy artificial intelligence and predictive analysis to gauge and interpret skills demand in the industry. It also allows them to suggest courses that are personalized for each applicant.
As per a McKinsey Global Institute report, 800 million global workers will be jobless by 2030 and will be replaced by robotic automation. Therefore, organizations will need employees ammunition with new skills in domains such as marketing, operations, banking, agriculture, chemistry, data mining, cloud computing, finance, stocks, and healthcare, etc. The new world will also look for skills such as creativity, analytical thinking, adaptability, dexterous thinking, leadership and the ability to collaborate seamlessly. No MBA school can teach individuals in all these areas.
About the Author
Bhaskar Majumdar is the Head – Corporate Affairs, Communication & Digital media of Egis India.
Bhaskar has over 23 years of communication consulting experience in the field of Corporate Affairs, Strategic Communications, Digital Outreach, Crisis Communication & Strategic Brand Building. Prior to joining Egis India, Bhaskar has worked with Reliance Industries as General Manager, Corporate Communications and ESPN Star Sports as Manager Corporate Communication. He has also worked with reputed agencies like Adfactors PR, Genesis PR, Vaishnavi Advisory and APCO Worldwide.