India’s job market is seeing an addition of over 12 million candidates every year. To add to that is the emergence of globally active work force from various countries who have been attracted by India’s growth story and want to stake a claim for success. Competition within the job market is bound to get higher and high-speed communications and digitization are commoditizing work processes; every day it is easier to ship work around the world, as has been seen in the past few years. India has been a beneficiary in the case when even technical work related skills that once commanded a premium is now often outsourced, off-shored or automated. This movement of work was partly due to India being on the other side of labour arbitrage as well as the compatibility of our work force to integrate with such companies. However, policies aimed solely at gaining jobs of such kind to tide of globalization are destined for failure. These jobs could very well be replaced to some other country that might offer a better profitability in future.

India must establish a competitive edge at the intersection of disciplines – for example, science and business, math and economics, cultural anthropology and marketing, or art and telecommunications. Educational institutions must continue to adapt to prepare India’s workforce with new skills as new industries and opportunities arise. We must recognize and embrace the multitude of opportunities created by the convergence of manufacturing and services. We must better link young job seekers with the needs of businesses and better understand the opportunities for high paying technically skilled jobs that cannot be easily off-shored. India has often seen the movement of creative and talented leave the shores of our country to seek opportunities abroad, India must focus to retain and engage them since they embody the spirit of entrepreneurship as well as innovation.


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© [2014] India Council on Competitiveness

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