According to the HRD ministry, India has 6,214 engineering and technology institutions which are enrolling 2.9 million students. Around 1.5 million engineers are released into the job market every year. But the dismal state of higher education in India ensures that they simply do not have adequate skills to be employed.
If you are a fresher graduating from campus, you have it tougher than your seniors in getting a job through your placement office. As automation cuts jobs across industries and as start-ups find it difficult to get funding, the top recruiters will prefer to stay away from campuses. Big packages, mass hiring and offers will go down.
This is indeed a major issue affecting the IT industry in India. NASSCOM data shows that only about 25% of engineering graduates are employable. Even those employable are not readily deployable. IT Industry spends between 16-24 weeks in training to make the campus graduates deployable. NASSCOM data suggests that IT industry spends close to USD 0.75billion [INR 1062 Cr.] annually on training fresh campus graduates.
As words like 'cost cuts' and 'penny pinching' have turned into sound management strategy rather than one-off events in the IT industry, the demand for automation in monotonous tasks has grown. Indian tech firms are paying more attention to upgrading the skills of their existing employees to meet clients' demands for more specialised skill sets.
“As many as 97 per cent of graduating engineers want jobs either in software engineering or core engineering.
But, only 5 per cent have suitable skills to be employed in software or product market, and only 7 per cent can handle core engineering tasks.”
Factors working behind an engineer's employability:
- What is lacking in our system is proper training and development methodologies, which could be implemented right from the first year, when a student enters college. The principle applies to all (management, engineering, IT etc.)
- The ability to apply the concepts learnt to constantly develop innovative things and find solutions to complex problems are main factors working behind the employability of an engineer.
- Problems with English language along with issues in computer programming make these students ineligible for employment. The difference in English and cognitive skill modules may only be a function of the input quality of the students. There is a consistent trend that the maximum gap is in computer programming, followed by cognitive skills and English and least in other domain skills."
- Students must be given the space and scope to think and innovate, to question and come up with solutions.Indian students trained right from their primary education that they never learn to question or innovate. Rote learning instils in students a sort of complacency for more than 12 years of education and they are unable to make the shift from un-questioning learners to innovators in the job market.
- One of the major problems facing the fresh graduates is their insufficient understanding of basic concepts. The lack of in-depth understanding of technical information, lack of client-handling skills and insufficient knowledge across domains are the major skill gaps in the area
- The study attributes the lack of English communicative skills, which they found in 73.63 per cent of candidates, and low analytical and quantitative skills, which they discovered in 57.96 per cent of candidates to be other main reasons for unemployment. Aptitude tests are conducted to know your problem-solving skills, how efficiently you can work to solve a problem in the given time.
Recent Trends and Demanded Tech skills that students should adopt:
Specialisations which combine the use of data analytics, cloud computing and digital marketing are in demand. In the rapidly changing IT sector India's tech workers are learning new programming languages, cloud computing and big data analysis to enhance their job performance and move up in a company's value chain.
While cloud computing technologies remain the most popular picks for IT employees looking to add to their technical skills, business analytics and machine learning skills are also in high demand by employers
Some of the technologies and tools are,
Oracle, Capgemeni, Mphasis, Citi and Tech Mahindra are looking for people with proficiency in Spark - software which enables firms to sift through large amounts of data stored on the cloud. Engineers trained in this technology earn an average salary of 14.6 lakh per annum.
Amazon Web Services is the most demanded skill in 2017 with companies like Accenture, IBM, Wipro and Amazon Development Centre looking to hire AWS specialists. AWS refers to a suite of cloud computing services that make up an on-demand computing platform.
Accenture, Tech Mahindra, Barclays and Expedia are looking for engineers versed in DevOps which is used for automating software procedures.
Amazon Development Centre, Microsoft India R&D, Accenture, IBM, GE India and Harman are some of the companies looking for Machine learning engineers. This tech vertical refers to a type of artificial intelligence that provides computers with the ability to learn without being explicitly programmed.
Microsoft India R&D, Capgemeni, Ernst & Young, Dell and Honeywell are looking to manage their Azure cloud computing applications and services which run on Microsoft-operated data centres.
Ernst & Young, Accenture, Vodafone, Morgan & Stanley are some of the companies hiring specialists of this in-demand business intelligence software which helps companies to visualize large sets of data.
IBM, KPMG, Hewlett-Packard, SAP Labs are some of the tech majors looking for professionals with skills, technologies and practices to investigate past business performance to gain insight and drive business planning.
Atos, LinkedIn, Zscaler, Capgemeni and Accenture are looking Salesforce's cloud computing software is best known for its customer relations management applications
JPMorgan, Mphasis, Tech Mahindra, Oracle and Dell are some of the major tech companies which require people with knowledge of Selenium. This software is a portable testing framework for web applications.