Shocking Reasons Why Engineers of India are Struggling to Find Work

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One of the most popular courses of Indian parents and students in engineering. Getting admission into a reputed B.Tech course requires a lot of effort. But, the effort does not end there. The effort is required for clearing the undergraduate course with the highest marks possible. Unfortunately, this phase of student life will seem easy when an engineer is faced with unemployment as he or she enters the job market.

The main reason for rising employment of engineers

A shocking rise in employment rate has risen from 5.9% in February of 2018 to 7.2% in February 2020 by the Indian think tank CMIE is just the first indication of the difficulties that new engineers will face when they enter the job market. There are many reasons for these and here we the most important one: lack of the required skillsets in Indian graduates.

It is estimated that nearly 1.5 million students graduate as engineers in India every year. It is both shocking as well as shameful for the Indian education system is that only a small fraction of these new engineers (an estimated 20%) have the required skill sets to take on challenges of a working environment. Though the technological advancement has opened up a diverse array of roles and activities that require a greater application of analytical knowledge, human creativity, and intuition, Indian colleges and universities are slow to adopt the rapid changes.

Becoming an engineer is prestigious

One highly overlooked reason is the pressure under which most students take up engineering, seen as a degree with a guaranteed job. This leads to a high number of engineering graduates passing out each year, who may be meritorious and talented in more than one way but are unable to make the best of this field.

Jobs are many, but skills need to be built

Underlining the advantages of automation, Gartner’s latest report cited that AI will generate more jobs compared to what it eliminates by 2020.  However, the market can expect a constructive impact in tech-space employability only when it is supported by a holistic approach towards training and skill development. It is a sad day when a fresh graduate is unable to create simple codes during a job interview or in his or her working environment. The obvious solution is acquiring expertise through practical experience. Some universities are shifting to this approach when designing their B. Tech engineering programs.

But, announcing a comprehensive B.Tech syllabus is not enough! Colleges and universities need to set up labs and training facilities in conjunction with companies where students can gain practical knowledge and build on their expertise in real-life situations.

Forgetting the importance of updating skills fuels the growth of unemployment

Adding to the growth of unemployment is experienced engineers in the existing workforce with skills that have become obsolete in the current market. This deepens the crisis faced by engineers in India. With an approximate of 1.5 million engineers graduating every year, 80% remain unemployed and only about 20% find employment.

The skill gap affecting the Indian engineers exists because there is an absence of experience in the domain of relevant skills necessary for emerging tech jobs. The Developer Skills report suggests a strong mismatch between what the students are learning in the classroom and the framework that the corporate world now needs.

The way forward A deep impact and professional tech talent can only emerge when we take inspiration from the best models of learning to exist in this field. The deep experiential learning should be acquired on live or live simulated environments which deal with real deliverables that matter. The engineering programs should include the Do-It-Yourself and Hands-On approach to develop the confidence of students in dealing with practical problems. Lastly, one should consider hiring industry experts as mentors to guide the students in understanding the real-time situation and developments in engineering.