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Friday, 26 January 2018 12:17

Job creation - not a crisis for Modi government

It is true that utter lack of formal jobs is creating an upheaval in country which anyone can sense from the increasing demand for job reservations across the nation. Not enough jobs are created for engineers, MBAs, and other graduates, but one can’t really blame the Modi government for this.

Key reasons for job scarcity are –

  • It is a sad fact that most of the engineering and MBA students are not fit for a job in their fields, most of them end up working as a salesman. Several surveys have pointed out that less than 10% of the graduates are capable of meeting the needs of industry.
  • Mushrooming private colleges for higher technical education are big culprits. They lure gullible students and parents promising a good career, high salary, and comfortable lifestyle. Students who cannot read in English, have 50% marks in Maths are enrolled for B Tech/MBA!
  • The reason that just about 10% of MBAs and engineers are fit for a job is because nearly 80-90% is the excess capacity in private colleges. Since our poor countrymen are not able to understand the futility of studying in such private colleges, it was the job of government to prevent this excess capacity creation. But it is not being done because many of these colleges belong to politicians and the rest of the colleges are a source of bribe income for government regulatory institutions like AICTE.
  • It is mind-boggling to see that millions of people can be fooled for decades!!! Primary aim of education in a massively overpopulated and poor country like India should be job creation, not teaching organic chemistry, econometrics, or philosophy for the sake of it. The current crop of courses like BSc and BA etc are an unbelievable waste of resources at a gigantic scale. The sooner the government and citizens realize this, the better it would be for nation.
  • Last but not the least - overpopulation is the root cause of many of our problems. And this is the only government that has the capability to do something about that.

Where are the jobs?

There is little job growth for engineers, MBAs, doctors, and CAs. In future there would be strong demand for highly skilled people in AI, automation, cyber security, genomics etc. but only few in the top talent pool will get such jobs. The salary gap will be very large between high skill and low skill jobs.

Even though there is a slow growth in traditional jobs, a big wave of new jobs is coming. Some of these jobs are –

  • Photographers – earning as much as Rs 5-10k per session
  • Tailors – with revival in economy, garment industry is set to grow for decades, and it obviously needs tailors. The growth potential is huge, just like our population.
  • Plumbers/ carpenters/ electricians – high demand in urban areas
  • Maids/ drivers/ delivery boys – demand exceeding supply
  • Cooks/ chefs – expect rising demand for decades
  • Freelance programmers/ website/ graphics designers/ hackers
  • Content developers/ editors/ writers
  • Digital marketing/ SEO/ web analytics
  • Personal yoga/fitness/dance/music trainers
  • Event organizer/ music bands/ magicians/ performing artists
  • Online sellers/Amazon sellers
  • Beauticians/ Spa jobs/ weight control/ nutritionists

Most of these jobs are created by internet which is making it increasingly easier for anyone with a need to find the right person for solution. If a company needs some one-time modification in its website, it may easily find a freelancer. So, instead of employing someone, it will get the job done at the fraction of that cost. Now, for almost all your needs, you can instantly find a suitable solution provider nearby.

A crisp explanation from Nandan Nilekani on why India needs to focus on services and entrepreneurs

Why these new low skill jobs are cropping up?

  • Trickle-down effect: As income rises, a family’s needs rises - maid, cook, then driver, then personal fitness trainer etc. Plus, as some people get wealthy, they have more time for leisure, leading to demand for beautician, spa, entertainment etc.
  • Internet is creating new jobs – like digital salesman, online RM, online shop builder, security expert
  • Internet is facilitating freelancing – easy to match needs and solutions
  • Internet is creating awareness – that jobs are available in non-traditional fields like entertainment, fitness, personal health, content creation etc
  • Ecommerce – shifting of business from physical shops to online shops is creating jobs in logistics and for warehousing and delivery boys at lower end

Industries with big potential for low skill jobs creation

  • Retailing industry
  • Textile industry
  • Entertainment industry

This video shows labor need of textile industry –

What the government can do

  • An honest implementation of admission criteria will automatically kill the excess capacity in private higher education and save poor parents from wasting money
  • Instead of current degree system, implement a job oriented education system
  • Start subsidized/ sponsored vocational courses like tailoring etc.

What we can do

  • Debate on utility of college education system
  • Raise voice for honest admission implementation in private colleges
  • Make youngsters aware about which are the future job areas


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