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As lay-offs in IT industry rise, creating new jobs in the digital era will call for a new education system

Source | Financial Express : By Uma Ganesh

There has been growing concern about job creation in the context of increase in automation and several roles becoming redundant as a result in every industry. The IT industry, the darling of the Indian economy, is in the midst of assessing the requirement of talent pool in the coming years which would mean upskilling for some and elimination of roles for several others. Several IT services firms are bracing up to the reality of technology shifts towards automation and from managing legacy systems to moving towards developing digital solutions, leading to the need to plan and execute business differently with new skills and less resources. According to a McKinsey report, nearly half of the workforce in the IT services companies will become ‘irrelevant’ in the next 3-4 years. Manufacturing, banking and hospitality industry have started experiencing change on account of deployment of robots and Internet of Things (IoT), as a result of which the calibre of resources and the size of talent pool required would no longer be the same as in the current scenario.

The reality of loss of jobs has become a global phenomenon and every country is grappling with the urgent need to find appropriate solutions. For India, it is of top most concern due to the size of population and the country having the largest pool of youth below 25 years. Even though the GDP growth was 54% in the period 2005-2012, the net job creation was only 3% with 15 million jobs having been added. By 2025 there will be 80 million job seekers but with over 93% of the jobs continuing to be in the informal sector, there is likely to be a gap of 50 million jobs. As per the recent report of People Strong, India will account for the maximum impact – a quarter of the job cuts due to automation globally by 2021. The current challenge is not just restricted to new job creation but is also centered around the loss of existing jobs. Hence the subject of job creation can no longer be focused around skill development alone but needs an urgent, comprehensive and multidimensional integrated approach that is capable of delivering transformational outcomes.

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