More than a decade after India seriously started getting down to doing something about improving the skill-sets of our growing young population so that they may find jobs of their choice, employability of our youth continues to remain one of the biggest challenges facing the country.
While there are several factors responsible for this scenario, I would like to focus on one aspect, today, which often doesn’t get mentioned to the extent it should when we do a deep-dive into issues that need improvement for boosting the employability index of young Indian job seekers. And, that, is the quality of our assessors (considering that there has been some progress made in recent times to address the quantity challenge on the assessment front).
Unfortunately, many of the current crop of assessors often don’t have much of a clue about the business for which youth are being trained at a designated vocational education and training facility.
Not just that. Several assessors also have an inadequate understanding of the things that a vocational training provider ought to have for providing training as per global standards in a specific domain – be it in terms of physical infrastructure requirements or the number and quality of faculty members – majorly focused as they are on simply box-ticking the items mentioned in their own standard checklist.
I have no doubt that the effectiveness of signature skill development initiatives such as the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), for example, in churning out employable youth would be vastly enhanced if we truly had world-class assessors who have a clear idea of how different businesses operate, as is the case in advanced countries which have a well-established vocational education and training framework.
I would thus urge authorities like the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE), Government of India, the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), and other departments and organizations at the central and state levels connected with skill development, to devote greater attention towards improving the quality of our assessors.
My suggestion in this regard would be that local assessors be periodically audited by independent global experts to determine their level of knowledge of the job and the areas they need to improve on. Such an exercise could go a long way in furthering the realisation of our common aspiration to make India the ‘Skills Capital’ of the world. Orane would be delighted to partner key stakeholders for this initiative.
(The author is Co-Founder & CEO of Orane International. Views expressed are personal).